It’s Not All About The Money: Love What You Do

By Jesse Jurgenson, certified financial counselor
The Village Family Service Center

Have you found your true calling in life? How did you know when you found it? Was there a moment that sticks out, or was it a process?

The best way to increase your income is to be employed for a long period of time, in similar professions, with increasing responsibilities and results. Can you do all of that if you are miserable all day?

I’ve met many people who are in a job for the money. They tell me “I hate it every day but payday.” I’ve been there and I truly feel sorry for these people. But I do not judge them because we all have responsibilities to meet and battles to fight. Sometimes staying at a job we hate seems like the only way to win the battle.

Staying in a job you hate in order to meet your responsibilities may be a good short-term solution. But, to be truly successful at making money and making a good life, you must have your heart in it.

If you are dissatisfied, angry or resentful of your work, it will show. You may think you are hiding it–I promise you that you are not. Can anyone put on a happy face every day for 40 years when they are screaming inside? None of us want to live with, or work with, an unhappy person. Or even worse, a person who is obviously faking happiness.

It’s not always about the money. I have had the pleasure of meeting with a few people who made the decision to leave a high-paying job for something they are passionate about–even though it pays less. 

These people tell me they took the stress and unhappiness they experienced for 8 hours home with them, and it started to affect their family relationships.

Ideally, a career is about happiness, pride, and goals you want for yourself. Sure, you have to make a living and a large paycheck is nice–but in the end, it’s not all about the money. Loving what you do at work every day can make up for a lot of unearned income. (And the real secret is…if you love what you do it will show in your attitude and productivity, and it will probably result in increased your income.)

If you have found your professional passion in life, what advice would you offer to those who are still looking? I’d love to hear from you.