Passion Pays Off
For most of us, if we're asked why we work, the answer is depressingly predictable - for the money.
After all, until you can make mortgage repayments with fresh air and shops will take buttons in exchange for goods, you've got to make a dollar. But there are people who are so committed and passionate about their jobs that they work for love, not money - and happily accept the modest salaries that go with it.
Life strategist Ian Hutchinson says choosing a job or career just because you can earn lots of money is generally a mistake. "I reckon anyone who is just chasing the almighty dollar doesn't really know what they want in life," says Hutchinson.
"Some people think the measure of the game is how much money they earn but I would like to spend some time with those people and find out whether they really know what they want, because my guess is that they probably don't.
"Money can give more satisfaction but lack of money doesn't necessarily give more dissatisfaction."
Mike Creagan, an author, trainer, and careers consultant, agrees there is more to a successful career than a big salary.
"If we do that job that we are best suited to and enjoy the most then we all win," says Creagan. "The person wins, their colleagues win because they have a nice person to work with and, if they work for a business, the business wins because it's good to have someone who thoroughly enjoys their job."
And, ironically, says Creagan, those who follow their passion rather than their bank balance often come out on top. "The people who work because they really love it tend to keep working, keep loving it and keep upgrading their skills - and the money keeps chasing them," he says.
"A lot of people who choose a job or career solely based on money are usually the people with a greater probability of unemployment or of not being as happy in their job as they might otherwise be."
And Hutchinson says it is now more acceptable for people to enjoy their work.
Of course, financial responsibilities such as families and mortgage, mean many people can't toss in their job. But Hutchinson says everybody can consider small changes to make their jobs more interesting. "The key is to take a little time out to work out what will make your job a little more fulfilling," he says.
Creagan is even more straightforward when asked what people should do if they are trapped in a job they hate but can't afford to change. "How can they afford not to?" he says.
Source: SMH - 19 June 2002 By Nick Galvin
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