We’ve all heard, “Do what you love, and you’ll never work a day in your life,” but how many of us actually follow through on it? The sad truth is that many of us settle; we simply work to pay the bills, work as a means to an end. We ignore our inner voice telling us to aim and reach higher.
Instead of feeling unfulfilled and unhappy at work, imagine feeling intellectually stimulated and going to work having a profound sense of purpose and meaning. If you want to stop living on autopilot and start doing what you really want to do, here are three questions to ask yourself:
3 Questions You Need To Ask Yourself
- Are you chasing money instead of chasing your passion?
Many people get sucked in by a high paying job and lose sight of what they really want to do. If your job isn’t in alignment with your core values, it will only lead to frustration and unhappiness. To see if you’re on the right track, ask yourself:
- Would I do … even if I wasn’t getting paid for it?
- Do I lose track of time when I’m doing …?
- Do I feel fulfilled while I’m doing …?
Discovering what you love to do and what you’re passionate about tends to have a positive ripple effect on your entire life. Don’t you notice that when you’re doing what you love, everything else seems to fall into place?
“Honest self-examination illuminates ego-driven motives, socially conditioned desires, feelings of greed, of wanting ‘more’ and fears of change and impermanence,” according to Psychologist Dr Douglas LaBier.
In other words, gaining a deeper sense of self-awareness is the key to making good career choices.
- What are your expectations for work-life balance?
It’s unrealistic to expect our lives will be in perfect balance for long periods of time. Picture a scale with one side labeled “Work” and the other “Life.” On any given day the scales are rarely even; one side will always be heavier than the other. Our goal is to tip the scales over time in the direction that gives joy and meaning to our lives as often as possible. In the long run, we want to look back and see that we were able to live our life with meaning and purpose – the kind of life that fills our heart.
- What steps can I take to move me in the right direction?
Approach your goal with an action-oriented plan that creates steps to achieve it: “I intend to _ by _.” An example would be, “I intend to find a job I love by applying to at least 5 new job postings each day.”
The act of doing something every day toward a particular goal brings the goal into your consciousness. Through that constant repetition, you’re reinforcing that goal and making it part of your reality.
“Your inner life illuminates what to go after – or let pass by – in your outer life,” LaBier says. “It pulls you to expand your sense of who you are, beyond the narrow, constricted identity conditioned by family life and cultural norms. When grounded in your inner life you automatically narrow the gap between who you are inside, and how you behave on the outside. And that can truly redefine success.”