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Being Passionate about Work – Dr. Michelle Cleere

I once had a friend tell me that I shouldn’t turn my hobby, my passion into my work. She went on to say that it would ruin the love and enjoyment I got from it. She also said that work is work. It’s not meant to be fun or enjoyable. It’s a means to an end. While I understand what my friend was saying, I disagree. I am passionate about what I do. I love and gain so much from it. It’s what keeps me engaged. It keeps me wanting to learn and grow. Being passionate about what I do helps me continue to expand on my work and give everything I have, to every client. 

Work and passion

My friend’s theory of work is not that far off from most people’s. There is a myth that work must be hard and include long hours. It shouldn’t be enjoyable. Ironically, when people attend college, they look for professions that they are passionate about but somewhere that passion turns to other things, like money and prestige. We lose sight of the reason we wanted to do that work in the first place. 

I’ve been doing this work for 20 years now. There have been times where money and prestige started to take priority. I’d lose my desire for what I was doing. When I realized this was happening and turned my focus back on the reasons I love and enjoy the work I do, once again, things started to flourish. The passion flowed. 

Passion doesn’t mean that it’s easy

Hard work and passion can go hand in hand. Just because you are passionate about what you do doesn’t mean you lose sight of getting the actual work done. And just because you enjoy what do doesn’t mean it’s not work. 

I’m passionate about my work but that doesn’t mean it’s easy and there aren’t challenges. It’s not easy and every day there are real-life obstacles. Being passionate about what I do is what helps me get through these moments. I work from a place of curiosity versus frustration.

For those of you who think that hard work and passion can’t go together, you’d be wrong. You’ve either lost sight of why you do what you do, aren’t in touch with the love you have for what you do, or haven’t infused your work with passion. 

How to find passion in your work

There are some simple steps you can take to find passion in your work. It’s not easy to be excited about work when the hours are long, someone above you is telling you what to do and you need to meet deadlines. See if one of the following paths to finding passion in work resonates with you. 

  1. Get back in touch with why you are doing the work you are doing. Why did you choose it? 
  2. Find the love and/or enjoyment of what you do. What do you love or find enjoyable about it? 
  3. Infuse some passion into your work. Come from a place of curiosity versus a place of frustration or boredom. What can you do differently?

Start small. Check-in with yourself. Every day make sure you engage in some aspect of your work that you love. For example, I love having the ability to help clients develop what they never knew needed developing so they can flourish at what they do. I’ll bet there is something you are still passionate about. You just have to find it! 

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