The dilettantes of the internet are back at it.
If you’ve spent any time in the dark recesses of the internet labeled “self help” or the more professional track moniker, “personal development”, you’ll have seen many blog post about living and working your passion.
The blog-o-sphere is abound with self-help gurus and life coaches spouting-off about passion, creativity, and inspiration as if it were a ballet or psychedelic song from the 60s. A place with unicorns, rainbows, where everything is coated in a fine layer of granulated sugar.
Well, these rah-rah posts may seem useful, maybe even helpful to the neophyte, but I think they can do more harm than good.
These blogs assert that if you’re not working “in your passion” like it’s some warm bath of creativity and divine inspiration, you’re simply not doing meaningful work.
The reality to many is, passion comes to you as an apparition. It’s often covered in dirt, equipped with a hammer or shovel, blister-riddled hands, and with sweat dripping from it’s brow. This real passion comes disguised in toil, harebrained assertions, bouts of depression, and fits of temporary insanity and self-delusion.
It more often appears in the form of manic, disjointed labor instead of a fluid ballet of grace and finesse.
Beware that the real passion appears at your doorstep disguised as long tedious hours cloaked in hard work.
Mark Cuban may have put it best in his blog post titled Dont Follow Your Passion, Follow Your Effort.
“1. When you work hard at something you become good at it.
2. When you become good at doing something, you will enjoy it more.
3. When you enjoy doing something, there is a very good chance you will become passionate or more passionate about it
4. When you are good at something, passionate and work even harder to excel and be the best at it, good things happen.
Don’t follow your passions, follow your effort. It will lead you to your passions and to success, however you define it.”
Couldn’t have said it better myself, Cubes.
Passion isn’t the point of the work. Passion is a byproduct of the act of work.