Is Doing What You Love Enough?

How many variations of “if you do what you love then you’ll never work a day in your life” have you heard?

So. Many. Times. It’s the cliche that just won’t quit. And I have to say that I disagree with it. I would say, “find a balance between work and fun and you will never hate working a day in your life.”

Even if you love what you do, you have to work hard at mastering your skills.

I attended the CMT Suits and Boots Tour in Bangor, Maine last night and someone said, “It must be nice to do what they love all the time.” Yes, I am sure that Brett Eldredge and Thomas Rhett are incredibly grateful that they get to do what they love every day, but I know from experience that they work incredibly hard and sacrifice a lot to do what they do.

They miss holidays, birthdays, and more with family and friends. They live out of a suitcase for months at a time. They have a carefully crafted image to uphold publicly. They spend hours practicing, rehearsing, writing and recording new materials. They have to stay ahead of the trends in what you as a consumer will be interested in hearing a year from now. They can’t just strike up a conversation at a bar without worrying if the person is going to sell a photo, record a conversation, or take advantage of them for their success. They get little to no sleep most of the time and a most likely professional nap-takers and coffee drinkers.

Success never comes without sacrifice.

That’s the catch– you have to find a job that you are passionate about, but that also lets you live the life you love too. If you love touring and traveling and playing your music every night, then you have to find a career that lets you do it. If you like having nights and weekends to do other things and pursue other passions, then you find the job that allows you that freedom.

Personally, I’ve been on both sides. I’ve had the life-sucking, all consuming job that required me to be on call 24/7 and it was exhausting. It left no time for me to be involved in my community, travel with my friends on weekends, spend uninterrupted vacations with my family, and it made me miserable. Currently, my job allows me freedom, not only financially, but also when it comes to my schedule. To me, flexibility is the key to happiness when it comes to a career. I also believe that working hard should be rewarded with being able to play hard.

So, no, there is no such thing as doing what you love and never having to work. You have to work at something you love so that you can enjoy the other things that bring you happiness and balance.

Balance is the key to loving what you do.

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