We’ve all heard this advice before: Follow your passion. And many of us have wondered what exactly it means?
Yes, when you’re looking for your next job or considering changing fields, zeal can be a good indicator that you’re on to something meaningful. But it’s not the only, one-size-fits-all intuition to follow, and it’s certainly not the only reason to say yes to a new opportunity.
There are plenty of reasonable, logical, and frankly inspiring reasons to have a career that isn’t your life’s devotion. Here are 11 of these below.
Financial well-being is as good of a reason as any to take on any position—anything beyond basic survival is essentially bonus points. (HBR)
According to Niall Doherty, there are only two reasons to get a job: to earn and to learn. So what if you don’t feel like your work is your calling? It’s still teaching you valuable skills. (Niall Doherty)
If you know you absolutely want to live somewhere specific—to be with a loved one, to build a new home, or to start a family—some say that’s reason enough to take any offer you can get in that location. (Money Under 30)
Changing industries? It’s totally valid to have a transitional position in the meantime while you figure things out. (Career Attraction)
Who said you have to live your passion during your 9-to-5 anyway? If you love to travel, own a collection, or create art for fun, having a well-paying job that finances your hobbies can be just as good. (The Simple Dollar)
You probably didn’t grow up dreaming about getting halfway up the ladder just to land a shiny entry-level position in a new industry. But if it’s a stepping-stone to something you might want to do later on, it’s an absolutely respectable thing to take on. (Fortune)
For young professionals who are getting out of college, moving out of their parents’ homes, or only starting out, sometimes accepting a new position is all about independence. (The Financial Diet)
Having a job that has a positive impact on your community can mean even more than taking on something that only benefits your personal interests. (Cheat Sheet)
If you’re feeling stuck doing something for X or Y reasons, but wish that you were more excited to get up for work each day, try creating excitement yourself. There are plenty of ways to cultivate passion for your job, even if you don’t feel it now. (The Minimalists)
And be practical—it’s possible that your passion just isn’t a lucrative option. That’s OK, too. (Forbes)
Struggling to find some direction, now that you’re not relying on that feeling to power your career prospects? Consider following your fear instead. (The Daily Muse)