Friday, December 19, 2008

Thought-provoking (and contrarian) advice from Mike Rowe

Article on

As a huge fan of Dirty Jobs, I think Mike Rowe's career advice is definitely something to ponder:

So why are people with dirty jobs having more fun than the rest of us?

The answer (aside from the fact that they're still employed) is because they are blissfully sheltered from the worst advice in the world. In particular, I'm thinking of a specific piece of nonsense that implores in earnest italics, to always, always ... Follow Your Passion!

If I've learned anything from this show, it's the folly of looking for a job that completely satisfies a "true purpose." In fact, the happiest people I've met over the last few years have not followed their passion at all--they have instead brought it with them.

These guys are passionate about what they do, but none of them aspired to the careers they now enjoy. None of them were guided by a burning desire to do a particular thing. What they did was step back from the crowd and watch carefully to see where everyone else was going. Then, they simply went the other way. They followed the available opportunities--not their passion--and built a balanced life around the willingness to do a job that nobody else wanted to.

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