recently i was at an eddie vedder [aka: lead singer pearl jam] concert watching a man who is truly passionate about what he does for a living. you could see, hear and feel this. not only when he was singing but when he was simply changing instruments on stage. his overwhelming joy for performing was intoxicating. my friend said to me “now that’s someone who is passionate about his job”. but can we all be rock stars...? can we all feel that passion within our careers and is it really that important to our life?

lately this topic of passion and happiness in our careers has been a consistent conversation with my friends. i come from a family where your career doesn’t define your happiness or who you are. we were taught to do the best possible work at a job that you were happy enough to do every day for as long as necessary. if you happen to love it and be passionate about it, then that is a bonus. i was also brought up to believe that life is more about enjoying the time you have outside of your employment, and what you do with it and who you do it with. i would have to say that my career doesn't make or break my happiness. i do “like” what i do, and from time to time i’m passionate about it. my dream job still eludes me and honestly, finding it isn’t important to me. i have over the past years started to make time for things i’m passionate about. like photography, doing this blog and renovating/decorating mine and friends places. 

i was curious to hear what my friends thought about dream jobs and if it effected their day to day general happiness. out of those who responded, no one was doing their dream job. most were still unsure as to what they really wanted to do. interestingly my friends who were parents have didn't feel that not doing their dream job was effecting their day to day happiness.
somehow they have managed to create that dream into their daily life as work for them was to pay the bills and passion was what you created within your life. i loved that one friend wanted to own a gourmet delicatessen but considered it a dream and to live this dream daily has created a gourmet delicatessen in her own pantry. my brother, like most beach loving males, would love to be a paid free surfer but as this is but a dream he has a job that allows him plenty of time to enjoy his passion.

those friends who were childfree (through choice or circumstance), generally believed that their career was an important factor to their overall happiness. these friends also dreamed of careers that somehow benefit those in need but finding time and finance to do this stopped them pursuing this further. by no means am i implying that if you have children you are generally happier in life, just that your passion for a career isn't as an important factor to life's overall happiness. this is something for us who are constantly questioning our career paths and searching for passion should think about.

in the grand scheme of life, we all want happiness, love, passion, family connections and to help others. our dream job is for 95% of us, a dream and when we leave this world our life is remembered by those who we have loved and who have loved us back. its very unlikely that your memorial will note “passionate about their job”, not even if you are a rock star...  


PHOTO © christine mcdonald | state of joy 2014