Should your passion be your career?

posted 3 years ago in Career
Post # 2
Member
544 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2014

My passion is working in the medical field, and I am studying to be a medical assistant. I figure you only get to live your life once, so don’t live it with regrets! If he isn’t happy with the amount of effort or money he makes, then he really should quit before he does end up regretting it!

Post # 3
Member
2474 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

I think the answer to this really depends on the person. There’s a girl I went to high school with and we shared AP Studio Art class. I loved her style, she loved to draw, and was positive she wanted to make a career of it. After a year and a half of a teacher telling her what kind of projects to do, she dropped out of class and took something else. Now, some 10 years later, she still draws almost every single day and loves it. I guarantee you that if she’d tried to do it for a living, she would absolutely hate her life. She is REALLY thankful she stopped when she did. 

As for me, I kept up with art and got a degree in animation. I do it, now, in my daily job. I love it. I love getting paid to do something I like (and it’s not bad pay, either). I don’t know if I’ll do it forever, but I do know that I can quit and do something else, anytime I want to. Same goes for your husband. 🙂 Now, I don’t draw anymore, and that makes me a little sad, but I get to at least work in a place that I worked towards my whole life. 

Post # 4
Member
413 posts
Helper bee

What else does he enjoy? It doesn’t need to be a specific field per se, but does he enjoy working with people? Making things more efficient? Where you live, what is there a need for, and is there any role he could see himself in? 

I would assume that he doesn’t have post-secondary schooling that isn’t specific to cooking, if that’s what he’s always wanted to do, so he may need to go back for a degree/diploma/trade, but I think it would be worth it.

Life isn’t just about following your “passion”, it’s about building a life that works for you in all aspects. This includes work/life balance, scheduling, family time, purchasing power (ie. home ownership, vacations), etc. He might love cooking, but he might be happier doing it on weekends and working a 9-5 he just enjoys (where he feels challenged, has good coworkers, and feels rewarded for his efforts), while still being able to put his (future) kids to bed at night, rather than doing what he loves, but feeling like he’s always stuck on a hamster wheel career-wise.

For example, one friend, her passion is horses. She has two of them, competed when she was little, rides them after work some days, and then every weekend. But she knew that she would never be able to fund the type of life she wanted without a different job. She didn’t want to be working all hours of the day, and having to look after other people’s horses, and she’s a great communicator, so she runs social media/events for a big company, and is very happy with her work-life balance.

Friend two, is also passionate about cooking. Not as much as your husband, because she never considered cooking school, but LOVES it. She does marketing/promotions/design for a restaurant group, and then hosts massive themed dinner parties a few times a year. She also hosts Sunday sessions once or twice a month for a smaller group of us where she cooks a TON of food for those of us who are less gifted in the kitchen: the grocery list gets divided between us, we drink beer/wine while she cooks, and then we have a big dinner, and get to go home with tons of leftovers and freezer food (she cooks multiple meals – it’s more than just leftovers from dinner). I kind of think we’re getting the better end of the deal, but she LOVES it, and always has a new recipe she wants to try on us (although she happily takes requests too).

Post # 5
Member
1750 posts
Buzzing bee

It depends on the person and the situation. 

It may be necessary for someone to put their passion on the back burner for a bit in order to free up time, funds, and space for other jobs. They can still work on it, practice, and enjoy it, but not so much that other important areas of life go by the wayside. 

That’s what a lot of people have to do; artists, authors, musicians, etc. They do something else to take care of bills and take care of needs, and then they work on whatever is they love to do in their free-time. They do what they need to do to get better and eventually turn their passion into a career. 

I don’t know how many avenues he’s tried in order to get his career where he wants it to be, but maybe he needs to go back to the drawing board. You know, try to look for a different route to get where he wants to be. Sometimes the best thing to do is take a break, reevaluate, and go about meeting the goal in a different way.  

Post # 6
Member
3344 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: April 2013 - Rhode Island

I think it’s great (probably ideal) if your career happens to also be your passion.  Who doesn’t want to be paid to do what they love?  But it definitely doesn’t always work out that way.  My passion is still a hobby.  I WISH I could make enough money with it to make it my career, but that’s just not the way the world works.

Post # 7
Member
8426 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: April 2013

Depends on the person and the passion.  My passion is a hobby (crafts, art, etc), so I probably wouldn’t be making very much.  I have friend that is passionate about sales, so it works out well for him.  Luckily, I don’t have to work so I get to enjoy my passion; but if I was depending on it to make ends meet, I probably wouldn’t be very satisfied/happy.

Post # 8
Member
559 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2014

I think it depends on the person.  My job is not my passion – all my passions are currently hobbies, but could eventually become jobs (researching our prison system is my current passion).  

That said, I don’t define myself based on my day job.  However, FI’s job is very important to him.  He DOES define himself and part of his worth based on the jobs he has.  I guess it’s nice that we are opposites in this way.

Post # 9
Member
2132 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: July 2014

Absolutely yes.  Speaking from someone who grew up with 2 very hard working parents who decided not to do their passions for a career so they could earn more money, and I always knew I always wanted to follow mine.  Yes, I agree that it is frustrating not making nearly as much money for how hard you work and your skill (I’m also in a very low paying field which I’m passionate about), but you would even be more exhausted, and frustrated working at something you don’t have a passion for.  The older my parents get, the more and more it gets to them.  They are so unbelievably exhausted from trying to put forth all their energy towards jobs they don’t have a passion for that they don’t have energy nor time to even have their passion as hobbies and haven’t in over 20 years.    

Post # 10
Member
3735 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: September 2014

Sometimes “passions” are also known as “hobbies.” Perhaps he needs to seek a different route or come to terms with making less money than is desired.

Does your husband have a culinary degree? If not, that might help not only fuel his passion but also boost his pay check.

Post # 11
Member
559 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2013

I’ll join the chorus of Bees saying “it depends.” My husband and I are a good example.

My passion is immigrants’ rights. I was able to make a career out of it. I am an immigration attorney. Upsides: I get to do what is most important to me, every day. When people ask me what I do for a living I can say it’s something I’m passionate about.  I don’t worry about the what-if’s in my career. I’m doing what I’m meant to do and that’s that. Downsides: sometimes I don’t enjoy my work because, well, it’s a job and jobs can suck. Even though it’s important to me, the daily slog just gets to me. Also, I don’t make much money (think low teachers salary). Most attorneys make 3-4X what I make.

My husband’s passion is ultimate frisbee (it’s like a mix between soccer and American football with with a frisbee). He’s good at it but he’s not a pro athlete. It would be foolish for him to pursue it as a career. So his full time job is as my business manager/paralegal and in his free time he manages and plays in a local ultimate frisbee league. Most of his friends and travels come from the frisbee scene. 

I don’t necessarily believe “do what you love and the money will follow.” Not everything is lucrative, even if you’re great at it. It really just depends.

For your husband, it’s just gonna be a matter of seeing where his threshold is. We all have a point at which it’s no longer worth it. It’s different for everyone. He’ll figure it out.

Post # 12
Member
38 posts
Newbee

You have to find a work/life balance.  One of my friends is an amazing vocalist and majored in music in college.  She gave serious thought to trying to make it as a professional musician, but she ultimately decided that the risks outweighed the benefits.  Now she works as a banker.  She is well paid and has a generous vacation and benefit package.  In her spare time she sings in several local groups, performs at friend’s weddings, and travels to NY to see broadway shows every chance she gets.  She is really happy with her decision.  Everyone is different, but that’s the option that worked for her.  If your husband can find a job that gives him the flexibility to pursue cooking on the side, then that might be the best of both worlds.

Post # 13
Member
284 posts
Helper bee

My passion is horses, and I’m studying large livestock management, but hope to be more focused on farm animals and animals bred for food and the scienece related to it rather than just on horses.

I’m currently a working student under a brilliant trainer who is an exceptional guy, and I hate it.

I’ve burned myself out over my passion, and I regret that. I love it still, but I struggle to enjoy it at all.

Post # 14
Member
5204 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: April 2013

FutureMrsB123:  I think you should make your passion your career if it affords you a way to get your financial needs met.  Many people’s passions do not.  Sometimes that means finding the right take on comercalizing your pasion – for example, cmoputerized graphic design for video games instead of oil paintings.

It sounds like in your DH’s case he’s not getting burnt out on the cooking, but more on the lack of pay and politics.  I would think that being a headchef is just as much about business/people management skills than it is about cooking skills.  Maybe this area of the business is not of interest to him?  Maybe he just need to find that restaurant with the right cultural fit?  Maybe he needs to start his own business?

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