You've heard this career mantra before: Do what you love and the money will follow. But as any aspiring poet or starving artist can tell you, it just isn't that easy. Finding a way to do what you love and still make enough money to support a family can be a real challenge. Still, many experts say finding a way to follow your career bliss is worth the effort.
People who do what they love for a living tend to live happier, more productive lives, these experts say.
And those who don't are often made sick by working at jobs they hate.
Here are 10 reasons why it is important to strive to find a way to do what you love for a living (or, at the very least, find way to love what you already do).
Your self-esteem improves
Those who do what they love for a living end up feeling better about themselves, said Sherry Mirshahi-Totten, a career advancement coach and the CEO and founder of Roadmap Career Services.
"Your own self-esteem will be higher because you will feel energized by what you do, and your employer will be more prone to rewarding you for it," Mirshahi-Totten said.
You will be motivated
Ellen Ercolini, a career and life coach, believes it's important to do something you love for a living because when the going gets tough (as it assuredly will), you'll be motivated to push through.
"Instead of being overwhelmed with stress for a job that you don't even like, which affects other areas of your life, you have the connection and inspiration to make it work," Ercolini said.
You become a valued employee
A business's best asset is an employee who loves his or her job, said Mary Hladio, founder and president of Ember Carriers Leadership Group, an organizational performance consulting firm.
"Someone who genuinely loves their job is more satisfied and likely more motivated and productive during their time at work," Hladio said. "It is unlikely that they will complain or begrudgingly complete tasks at the minimum level of effort, and instead they will be engaged in their work, proactive and, furthermore, interested in motivating co-workers in the mission and goals."
You earn more money
Professional coach and author Karen Garvey said loving what you do can have a significant positive impact on your wallet.
"The angst of hating one's role often leads to an inability to manifest promotions, sales, raises, etc.," Garvey told BusinessNewsDaily.
Your overall health is better
Author Walter Meyer said having a job you love plays a role in your overall health.
"The tension and pain of doing a job every day that you detest has to take its toll in terms of higher blood pressure, headaches and the rest," Meyer said.
You garner more respect
People who love their jobs often spend extra time making sure they are doing their best work, which executive coach Kathi Elster said will undoubtedly be noticed by supervisors and peers.
"You tend to go above and beyond what is expected, gaining the respect of those you work with," Elster said.
You have a better home life
Personal and business coach Melissa Heisler believes employees who have a job they love will also have a more enjoyable home life.
"Instead of coming home with stress and tension headaches, we return home at night with more energy for ourselves and our families," Heisler said.
You are more productive
Cheryl Palmer, a career coach and professional résumé writer, said employees who do something they enjoy for a living end up as more productive employees.
"Studies have shown that employees who are engaged in their work have a higher productivity rate," Palmer said. "Especially since employers are asking more of their employees than before, it helps to love what you do so that you can meet the challenges of the job."
You have improved mental health
As an expert in organizational culture and a professor in the W. P. Carey School of Business at Arizona State University, Angelo Kinicki said doing what they love helps employees remain mentally healthy.
"It is important to do something we love for a living because our work lives will then provide meaning and purpose, which are associated with psychological well-being and health," Kinicki said.
He points to Viktor Frankl's book, "Man's Search for Meaning," which notes people need a guiding purpose in order to live a happy and health life.
You can serve others better
Finance consultant Derek Olsen believes consumers naturally gravitate more toward employees who love their job than toward those who don't.
"The person who loves their job is much more likely to be better at doing the job," Olsen said. "That means more quality goods and better service for the customer."
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