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Doing What You Love is a Privilege, Not a Right

  June 1

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Doing what you love doesn't come easily, or without a lot of trial and error, but make not mistake: It's not a right, it's a privilege!I’ve talked extensively to people who are in jobs they don’t like. Honestly, it seems like most people don’t like their jobs, and boy do they love to complain about how much they hate them.

However, being all entrepreneurial and “ra ra” I’ve tried to help so many of these people I’ve talked to – sending them new job leads, texting them reminders about job applications, and editing their cover letters, etc.

I honestly and genuinely want people to be happy and succeed in life. And I truly just don’t get why very few people ever do anything about their situations.

Most people just sit in jobs they don’t like counting the days to retirement, and I really can’t even fathom why. Life, as we all know, is too short for all that.

On top of that, friends who I’ve tried to help find work in the past have actually been resentful and rude, like the time I mentioned a new writing job I got to a friend and she responded with, “Don’t you have enough jobs by now, Cat?”

This friend, mind you, has a marketing degree and is very capable of working online, yet never once pursued a lead or any work I sent her way. And there were dozens and dozens of opportunities I sent her before I just gave up.

Why? Why I ask you? If you are reading this right now and are in a job you hate, please tell me why you won’t go out and try another one?

Many people are scared they won’t be able to get another job, an unfounded belief since you did, in fact, get the job you currently have.

Look, you can probably think of a thousand reasons why you shouldn’t try to improve your situation, mostly because it’s probably the easiest thing in the world to just continue on as you are, but I’d like to encourage everyone to at least go looking for what they want!

I truly believe everyone has the ability to do a job they love but not everyone has the right to a job they love especially if they haven’t earned it.

The Dream Job

And, let’s talk about this dream job for a second. The truth is, finding a job you love is a very, very elusive feat. Many people build up this idea in their heads that once they find that “dream job” they will finally be happy and everything will be gravy.

This just isn’t true.

It’s kind of like how friends of mine have this super long list of everything they want in a man and they keep passing up perfectly nice guys because they don’t have abs or they don’t have a college degree or they didn’t do some random thing right. The perfect guy does not exist. The perfect girl does not exist. Nor does the perfect kid or the perfect house or the perfect job.

Life just isn’t perfect, but if you believe in yourself and really push yourself to do great things, you can at least try to squeeze some awesome sauce out of it.

Not Even My Job is Dreamy

I’ll be honest with you; I actually made up my job myself and it is not a total dream despite what it may look like. Literally, everything I do every day for pay is of my own creation. I am my own boss. I decide the work I do. I decide the clients to take. I decide the posts to write. And yet, there are some days when I just plain don’t like it.

There are some days when I just don’t feel like talking on the phone to someone. There are some days when I realize I’m a month behind on my accounting and dread the three hour long process it will take to catch up. Not every aspect of my job is fun and sometimes I have to remind myself that I’m actually in control, especially when I find myself completing a project that I absolutely hated and can’t for the life of me imagine why I took it on.

Change It Up!

But do you know what happens when I find myself in that situation? I change it! I work on a new project. I give back to others. I hop on a video chat with another blogger to get me all excited and sparkly again. I’m honest with myself. I seek out new opportunities. I buy new classes. I stay on my toes.

Because of this, I do what I love most of the time and so I am pretty content. The catch is that I don’t believe I was born implicitly with the right to enjoy my work or even the right to even have a job at all. Rather I believe I have earned the privilege after consistently putting in the work. And I believe each and every one of you can earn the privilege too.

So, if you’re in a job you hate, please do something about it because we’re tired of hearing about it. Kick some ass and find a new one. Or even better, make one up yourself.

Doing what you love doesn't come easily, or without a lot of trial and error, but make not mistake: It's not a right, it's a privilege!

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21 responses to “Doing What You Love is a Privilege, Not a Right

  1. It’s so important to realize loving our jobs is not something we’re entitled to. It seems like many people graduate from college expecting a dream job with a dream paycheck and are too easily discouraged when they don’t get this immediately. It can also be hard to read blogs about people in successful, happy job situations or early retirement and think you’re doing something wrong for sticking it out at your current, pretty good job. It’s not wrong! If you hate it I agree it’s time to start looking, as my husband was last year–and he did find a job he really likes. But it’s also okay to choose to stay in a decent job that you can live with if it’s not the right time to move on.

    1. Glad your hubby switched to a different job — and yes this post was more for people who hate their jobs. If you semi-like it and its working for you, awesome. I personally really want to LOVE what I do but as I said in the post it doesn’t happen every day. Gotta do what’s best for you and your fam. 🙂

  2. Great advice Cat. Its what I offer to others when I hear them complaining, go do something about it or tell someone who has the ability to change it for you. If you just whine to your peers all day about things in the office what good is that going to do. Also when raising issue to a supervisor or manager offer solutions to the issue too, just don’t bring the problems and expect them to fix it all.

  3. “So, if you’re in a job you hate, please do something about it…” –> I JUST quit my job on Thursday! I hated being a lawyer. I’m going to work at a financial firm where I’ll get my CFP. From there I will do more entrepreneurial things with my blog, writing, and speaking. I’m so excited!

  4. It’s a good reminder that no job is dreamy and wonderful 100% of the time. There is good and not so good with everything!

  5. I’m working in a less than ideal job right now. I wouldn’t say I hate it, but it’s not as awesome as it was when I first started. As I’ve started to look for new income generating avenues, I’ve realized that when I quit my current job, I want to be excited to switch TO something instead of just running AWAY from the job.

    To that end, I’ve started a few income generating businesses that I started in the last 1.5 years (food blog, site design, and personal shopping), but each one of these has been a bust. Not because I failed to make money, but because I didn’t like the nuts and bolts enough to want to stick with the plan long enough to see it become a cash cow. As I’m looking for new career opportunities, I’m realizing that is okay, and even good to try out and fail at a lot of things, so that I can refine my search.

    1. It’s definitely okay to try and fail at a few things. The whole point is to keep searching and keep that curiosity because eventually something will click. My advice is to do something that helps others. Usually that is the extra boost and feel good-awesomeness that makes things click.

  6. I can honestly say 20 years in my line of work has made me jaded! I have this experience but I am at a point where I HATE my industry. So I don’t want to stay in it. But this is where all my experience lies, who will hire me to do something new (no college degree bc I have been doing this since I was 16)? Oh and this 20 years has me want my next job to be devoid of any human contact! Maybe just sort of. I am just tired of talking to people everyday…lol

    Problem is my industry limits what I’m allowed to do as side work (I have to get approvals, and my company is super conservative so they don’t allow much) so I can’t work on a lot of the side hustles that may interest me to build them up into full time and my responsibilities do not allow me to stop what I’m doing with nothing to back it up.
    Not to make light of what some may go through but my job kind of has me feeling abused. Like no one else will love me (hire me) so I may as well just suck it up!!!

    1. Aw man that sounds like a vicious cycle, but if you really hate it, time and time again I would encourage you to choose FREEDOM! Yayyy freedom! I would hate working somewhere that limited my ability to make extra income. That’s so not cool – businesses should encourage their employees to learn new skills and support themselves. I’m not sure what types of side hustles you’re interested in but I know many bloggers who anonymously started blogs with their work not knowing. Many of my coaching students and my assistant have been anonymously writing for others for pay and have earned upwards of $2k a month in a very short amount of time. College degree so not required! If you really do hate it and really are miserable, I encourage you to find a way out. Life is too short to work in a job that sucks. As far as lack of experience, I went all the way through graduate school to study history and work in museums and somehow I find myself employed as a financial expert (after never taking a finance class.) Don’t let the lack of experience or your lack of a college degree (which is overrated anyway) hold you back. You can teach yourself anything. You can do anything! You can become an expert in anything. It’s all up to you so rock it out because you’re awesome. Your future is up to you!

  7. I totally agree – it really is a privilege to work in a job you love and it should not be assumed that you will get to that point immediately at the start of a career. Sometimes you have to pay your dues for a future payoff. Sometimes you have to acknowledge that a dream job might not allow you to lead a dream life, and balance those two out.

  8. Cat, it is really in our hands what kind of life we’ll have. I resigned two months ago and felt really good that I did because I am now in a better situation and liking my job really well. It is indeed a privilege.

  9. In my opinion, two things prevent people doing something about being in a job (or a life) they hate. First, fear of the unknown/failure. Even though they hate the job they have – it pays the bills (hopefully) and they already have it – it’s familiar. If they dump it, try something new and fail…well….then they’ve failed and nobody likes to be a failure. Second, people use it as a crutch for their unhappiness, or lack of fulfillment of their dreams. “Of course I haven’t achieved my dreams, my job sucks!” or “I don’t have everything i want because my boss is a jackass!” It gives them something to blame for not being where they want to be.

  10. GREAT POST! I’m working on this right now because I’m tired of the energy it takes to convince myself to go to a job I hate. I’m turning in my notice at my PT job this weekend and will be quitting my FT job soon after.

  11. Yep! I used to want to be a counselor, til I realized I wouldn’t be able to sit and listen to people complain all day and not actually DO anything about it. (Not that that’s what everyone does, but enough.) Too frustrating. If you don’t like your life–change it. Simple as that. (And despite all the arguments, yeah, you can usually find a way to do SOMEthing)

  12. So true. Most people don’t realize that everything in life is a choice. Yes, our choices have consequences and there are no guarantees about anything, but no one forces you to do anything.
    If you hate what you’re doing, choose to try something different. If you love parts of what you do, choose to talk to your boss and make that a bigger part of your job. If you hate working nights and weekends, choose to set stronger boundaries.
    Also, it’s always good to choose a plan B.

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