Careers: An Essential Mindset

 

How many of us go through life being told “do what you love and you will never work a day in your life?” ? I know that growing up that is all I heard. I was fortunate to be surrounded by a large family and friends that supported any endeavor I set my mind to. “Do what you love and you will never work a day in your life.” What does this mean? What do I love? What do you love or better yet- what do we love enough to pursue with our entire lives?

At the young age of 13 I started training as a classical vocalist and carried this training through high school. I was always involved in anything musical and even ran the music department my senior year. When looking to start college and choose a career that I would love and never have to work a day in- I chose music. I completed four years of undergrad and received my BM in Vocal Music Education. I loved every minute of it and as every young college graduate is – I was thrown into the real world in the blink of an eye to embark on doing what I love.

Then why couldn’t I make myself apply for jobs?  I loved my music.

All of sudden I was faced with the grim reality that while I loved my music and the experiences I had gathered over the years-  I didn’t love it enough to pursue it with my entire life. I spent hours thinking about what my goals in life were and I came to the conclusion that I had spent four years of schooling convincing myself that I was chasing my goals- but I had my goals all wrong.

What if doing what you love, even though it doesn’t feel like work each day, doesn’t provide the path necessary to achieve the ultimate goals and dreams you have for life? What if my ultimate goal wasn’t to “never work a day in my life”- but rather to do whatever it takes to achieve more?

I made a decision. I had to make a completely 180 degree change.

Through a few rounds of networking- I entered a corporate office and met the VP of one of the most successful divisions. I had every interview question answer practiced and perfected and I was ready to make the best impression I knew how. Then the question came, “what do you want in life?”.  OH MAN?! Really?  This question again? I wracked my brain for the perfect answer, opened my mouth ..and… nothing. I was done lying to myself. I sat back in my chair, loosened up my blazer, crossed my legs and let out a whole bout of honesty.

“I want to change things. I want to change my situation- I want financial freedom, I want to pay for my children to go to college, I want to pay off my student loans, I want to buy a house, I don’t want to live pay check to pay check, I want to help others, I want my family to have security, I want more than what I was set up with. I want to achieve more.”

The VP’s response was this: “Good. We only hire people who are hungry. Your career should be a bridge to the type of life you want to live.”

And it hit me. “Do what you love and you’ll never work a day in your life, but be willing to do what it takes and understand that each day at work is building a bridge to the type of life you will love to live.”

So my challenge to you all is this: what are your goals? What do you love enough to pursue with your entire life each and every day?  My goals are simply this: to change the world around me, reach my every aspiration, own a home, put my children through college, and live a financially stable life. I love my family enough to work each and every day in life. I may not love the work day in and day out. But I do love that each day builds that bridge and brings us one step closer.

-xoxo Essentially Me.

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