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Focusing on what you do best or what you wish you could do best?

Morpheus

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Jan 9, 2019
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33
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INTP
So I was reading a book called So Good They Can't Ignore You and the author says that following your passion or dream job is kinda bullshit. You need to get really good at something and make everyone knows about it. And when you reach this level you will get in your dream job, not because of what you do but because this gives an opportunity of being in more control of what you do when you do and this kind of stuff.

He says that even when your job is stressing you, it's best to find a way to get specialized so people can come to you. What do you guys think about that? To you, it's best to find a job that fits it's strengths or develop your strengths in the career you already choose?
 

Yuurei

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Sep 29, 2016
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So I was reading a book called So Good They Can't Ignore You and the author says that following your passion or dream job is kinda bullshit. You need to get really good at something and make everyone knows about it. And when you reach this level you will get in your dream job, not because of what you do but because this gives an opportunity of being in more control of what you do when you do and this kind of stuff.

He says that even when your job is stressing you, it's best to find a way to get specialized so people can come to you. What do you guys think about that? To you, it's best to find a job that fits it's strengths or develop your strengths in the career you already choose?

There are billions of people fighting for jobs. You need to make yourself stand out somehow or it's the lowest rung in the service industry forever.
 

ceecee

Coolatta® Enjoyer
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Apr 22, 2008
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So I was reading a book called So Good They Can't Ignore You and the author says that following your passion or dream job is kinda bullshit. You need to get really good at something and make everyone knows about it. And when you reach this level you will get in your dream job, not because of what you do but because this gives an opportunity of being in more control of what you do when you do and this kind of stuff.

He says that even when your job is stressing you, it's best to find a way to get specialized so people can come to you. What do you guys think about that? To you, it's best to find a job that fits it's strengths or develop your strengths in the career you already choose?

Most people that realize they hate what they do, don't come to that realization until they're actually doing it. While I agree that you should do whatever you can to stand above the rest, I don't agree that you can't do something you at least like better. Because if you're a standout in a job you hate, just imagine how great you could be at something you like.
 

Oberon

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Feb 24, 2019
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151
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*NT*
So I was reading a book called So Good They Can't Ignore You and the author says that following your passion or dream job is kinda bullshit. You need to get really good at something and make everyone knows about it. And when you reach this level you will get in your dream job, not because of what you do but because this gives an opportunity of being in more control of what you do when you do and this kind of stuff.

He says that even when your job is stressing you, it's best to find a way to get specialized so people can come to you. What do you guys think about that? To you, it's best to find a job that fits it's strengths or develop your strengths in the career you already choose?

This is a good question and one I find myself returning to every three months.

Background: I am currently gainfully employed and many would envy my position, although it is quite modest in the grand scheme of things - I am doing alright for someone in their mid-thirties (not wealthy but well enough).

I would say that specialization pays off from what I've seen but comes with great sacrifices to your health, social life, and mental well-being. That being said it is becoming increasingly hard to have a life of abundance without specializing so there will be issues to well-being even if you don't specialize.

This is why I do not really fall into politics, or get too worked up about the system. The system is definitely the best in the world, but we are not really free people who benefit from society equal to our contributions. But that is a tangent and I wouldn't really debate that here because it might flag me and when things turn, I don't want to be put in the goulash.

There are certain types of specializations. For example a general doctor is still a specialization even though it is not a "vertical specialization" within the medicine field, it is certainly more specialized than, let's say, a waiter.

What I notice though is that when I see a specialize, for example I had a root canal today and went to a specialist instead of my dentist, they do way better work....much much better. I mean you are talking about night and day here between root canals at a dentist versus a specialist who only does root canals. I happen to know the specialists who work in the tooth field and they all have mansions....I on the other hand, specialized moderately, and I am living in a condo with positive net earnings...we work about the same hours (sometimes I work more since I work for a corporation which requires me to work according to my bosses paradigm regardless of any "laws."

Not with regards to following your passion...unless you are going to make 1,000,000's following your passion really quickly, it might not be worth it. You see even if you are making 200k following your passion, if your passion is in a fickle field, that will go away quickly. For example SEO optimization. You could love doing that and be making 500k now but if search engines become obsolete you go to 0...and there will probably be something better than a search engine in the next ten years.

Same with art. I knew a girl that was drawing paintings that could rival Leonardo Da'Vinci and she couldn't sell it for $10.00. I knew another guy who bragged about how he basically just took a dump on a canvas but was the "it" guy and was making 500k...probably not anymore but he did one year. So passion and talent will not get you wealthy in the field of your passion. You will need other skills - such as being a good sales man. If you can't stomach lying to people to sell your passion in high risk fields, where selling is required since people don't need your products, then you can go into accounting and start an accounting practice which is pretty much the only really honest business you could hope to grow - except the part where the taxation is not moral at all as it is conducted...so you will be the devils right hand, but at least you will be an honest hand.

That being said....it's hard to figure out for sure...I wouldn't really take my advice here, I'm just showing you what I think about it....plus...if you really think about what your passion is, it will probably change. That is why I said you might want to ensure you are making 1,000,000 doing your passion over the course of a few years because if you're only making 100k your going to be miserable eventually, unless you are one of those people who is so singularly focused on stuff - like teaching, helping other - and you don't care too much about money.

But if you're asking the questions then you are probably wondering what is more effective in wealth building. Following your passion is ultra-mega-high risk. What is your risk appetite? Could you live with yourself if you follow your passion but don't have a pot to piss in? Then follow it. I could never take on that risk because part of my self-esteem comes from my ability to produce and provide and the way I was raised was to believe that I am only as useful as what I earn. Sad...I know, but not as sad as the plutocracy which spawned that culture.
 

tommyc

Member
Joined
Jul 31, 2010
Messages
228
MBTI Type
INFJ
Enneagram
4w5
So I was reading a book called So Good They Can't Ignore You and the author says that following your passion or dream job is kinda bullshit. You need to get really good at something and make everyone knows about it. And when you reach this level you will get in your dream job, not because of what you do but because this gives an opportunity of being in more control of what you do when you do and this kind of stuff.

He says that even when your job is stressing you, it's best to find a way to get specialized so people can come to you. What do you guys think about that? To you, it's best to find a job that fits it's strengths or develop your strengths in the career you already choose?

I havent found it more complicated than - do I like my job? Am I less happy, the same, or more happy than when Im not doing it?

If youre in a job which is the former, you gotta move on quick as you can - its probably dragging you down and affecting your overall happiness outside of work too. If its the middle one, thats pretty good but you might be able to do better so think about other options. If its the latter: thats the ideal. Hang on to it.
 
Last edited:

Tomb1

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Joined
Jun 15, 2011
Messages
993
I work to survive. I don't know of any "dream job" or finding the best fit. I size up the best fit by the amount of independence I have. The less strings attached, the better. So running my own business is the only fit. I'd rather make 50K a year running my own business than 100k a year working for a fancy operation. I'd rather call the shots and be wrong. Thankfully, I've got a good brain, so I've been right enough of the time, even when just running on pure instinct with no prior knowledge to draw from. A lot of those people in the fancy operations are complete dolts...I've run rings around them more than a few times. I could make a lot more money if I was willing to prostitute myself....but then I would have to play a role and eat crap on a daily basis. I'd rather live in my car. Certain lines I don't cross because I've got too much self-respect.
 

Cellmold

Wake, See, Sing, Dance
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Mar 23, 2012
Messages
6,266
I need to pull my head out of other people's arses.

Because I was (and often still am) way too naive and trusting of other's opinions when it comes to work.

Turns out, on close examination heuristically, that most people just wing it a lot of the time and do well precisely because of what they aren't trying to do. Which isn't to say people don't have goals or general directions, but the most successful seem able to adapt these to context, circumstance & need where necessary, allowing them to bullshit themselves and others later (once they are more ahead) by telling the old story that there was a series of specific methods and events that lead to achievement. Except they miss out the gritty reality that ability to handle stress, adaptability, general working intelligence, good intuitive instincts (non-typologically) & thinking on your feet are actually key to managing the individual skills you have to put into place for most jobs.

That's because those are more innate than the technical skills you actually want to acquire in order to market yourself. In fact they are the 'meta' skills of learning and becoming good at something. Without them you're trying to understand calculus by counting on your fingers and toes; it's nonsense. This isn't to say that you cannot improve these meta areas, but the techniques involved are an area of attention and effort in their own right and can take over the very plans you meant to apply them to.

I agree with the sentiment that nothing worth having comes easy, cliche as it is, but only up to a point. And that point is where working hard meets working intelligently. And people often miss this because modern workplaces are extremely fast-paced, at least in the areas with most opportunity and population...i.e. cities. It's difficult to keep your cool and see epiphanic avenues or have good ideas when you succumb to the pressure. And that's only half under your control.

So for me passion is a weak motivator, contingent on far too many chances and mitigating factors. You do, though, need to do something within your level of stress management and coping skills, otherwise you will be miserable and feel inadequate.

I tried for years to excel in areas I like and admired, but it turned out I wasn't really suited to them and I've continued to struggle and attempt to find what I am more attuned to so I can focus on that, even if I don't actually like it all that much. At least then I could make some money to survive and take a degree of pride in knowing I was half-way decent at that skill & that it was something I could rely on to make myself useful and marketable. I pretty much wasted my youth and health up till now by trying to reach for a passion.

If you do get that extremely unlikely situation where you are earning comfortably and enjoying your passion, then I commend you. But you would be the member of an extremely small percentage of the population.

Ah well, keep striving, it's the least we can all do.

PS: Also, try not to be too agreeable or people pleasing, if you can help it, you need to fight for your own worth and make sure you aren't someone else's whipping post. Otherwise you'll end up being that statistic which does most of the work for none of the recognition.
 

Coriolis

Si vis pacem, para bellum
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So I was reading a book called So Good They Can't Ignore You and the author says that following your passion or dream job is kinda bullshit. You need to get really good at something and make everyone knows about it. And when you reach this level you will get in your dream job, not because of what you do but because this gives an opportunity of being in more control of what you do when you do and this kind of stuff.

He says that even when your job is stressing you, it's best to find a way to get specialized so people can come to you. What do you guys think about that? To you, it's best to find a job that fits it's strengths or develop your strengths in the career you already choose?
There are several factors intertwined here. First, as [MENTION=4050]ceecee[/MENTION] suggested, you can and should find a happy medium between what you like to do and what you do well. For many people, part of the liking is that they can do it well, and can be successful at it. I at least find it hard to enjoy doing something I am bad at. It is just frustrating, and I feel I am not accomplishing very much. Then there is the difference between interests or passions, and marketable skills. Whatever your interests, you can pick up skills along the way like computer skills or a foreign language/ASL. You can support yourself based on these skills while looking for a job you will like better, and they can also help you land a job in your preferred field, over a candidate who lacks them. I have gotten several jobs by taking a job I didn't really care for in my preferred organization, then working my way up/over by taking interest in the jobs I did want, showing initiative, and demonstrating I was a good worker. Organizations will often hire or promote from within, because they getting a known quantity, someone who has already proven themselves.

Yes, if you enjoy a job or career, you are more likely to put the time and effort into honing your skills and getting better at it. You will also come to it with more enthusiasm and ambition. Beware the notion that you will find happiness in a "dream job", though. Happiness on the job is as much related to your boss, coworkers, and working environment as your actual duties. I am a good example of that. In some sense, I have my "dream job", but it has become quite unpleasant and almost untenable due to the aforementioned factors.
 
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When passion means energy required, that makes workers enthusiastic in their work, following passion is actually a good advice in the long run, even tough it may not be well paid just yet. Generally speaking, A role in a job that you are assigned to may be not well suited for you. It could be harmful, so could be the best when we are not assigned to the role.

A lot of executive jobs are so standardized to the extent to which creativity are not appreciated. May be What they appreciate is to follow the procedure. Doing that for a living will not be feasible for me professionally, and mentally. I see NO SPECIALIST in standardized executive work. Specializing can be more achievable when worker are following their passion rather than following procedure.

I dream to find jobs that best fit with my nature of energy. Probably it is an entrepreneurial one.
 

Tomb1

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Jun 15, 2011
Messages
993
Focus on making it on your own....see what you're made out of. People born into a safety net are better to disavow it and start from scratch. Back in the day when I used to work for others (7 days a week) clearin' a 1000 a week is all that mattered...the goal was to put the most money away in the shortest amount of time so I could pay bills and invest in my business...cared less about what I did....I just knew I deserved to get paid for the air I breathe, so I started to wanna get paid all the time and force my foot into the door of something better. After my first business came to a halt (entire budget tied up), I was even more hungry to build capital, so as to keep the wheels greased. I'd go from a five day a week shit job, to a two day a week high powered job (make more in those two days than I made the other five days) and then work on multiple businesses at night, with little time for sleep...just running on pure greed....I wanted money coming in from every direction. The talkers, union whiners, idiot managers, brushed it all off. Bills need to be paid or the water gets shut off.
 

Maou

Mythos
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So I was reading a book called So Good They Can't Ignore You and the author says that following your passion or dream job is kinda bullshit. You need to get really good at something and make everyone knows about it. And when you reach this level you will get in your dream job, not because of what you do but because this gives an opportunity of being in more control of what you do when you do and this kind of stuff.

He says that even when your job is stressing you, it's best to find a way to get specialized so people can come to you. What do you guys think about that? To you, it's best to find a job that fits it's strengths or develop your strengths in the career you already choose?

Securing a decent paying job, getting a lot of diverse work experience, and getting out of your comfort zone are absolutely essential as a first step. No one remains unchanging. Your passions and interests change over time. So it is always better to stick to a well paying job, so you can afford to chase different dreams when you realize you didn't have a true passion for something. Very few people get it right the first time.
 

Tomb1

Active member
Joined
Jun 15, 2011
Messages
993
When passion means energy required, that makes workers enthusiastic in their work, following passion is actually a good advice in the long run, even tough it may not be well paid just yet. Generally speaking, A role in a job that you are assigned to may be not well suited for you. It could be harmful, so could be the best when we are not assigned to the role.

A lot of executive jobs are so standardized to the extent to which creativity are not appreciated. May be What they appreciate is to follow the procedure. Doing that for a living will not be feasible for me professionally, and mentally. I see NO SPECIALIST in standardized executive work. Specializing can be more achievable when worker are following their passion rather than following procedure.

I dream to find jobs that best fit with my nature of energy. Probably it is an entrepreneurial on...

Pay means a lot. Don't underestimate the power of high wages in making workers enthusiastic. I worked shit-jobs, and I worked high-powered jobs. For awhile I did both at the same time....the high-powered job began as part-time. It was night and day. In the high-powered job, I did not have to apply. I just got a call one day out of nowhere and was requested to come in for a meeting. In the high-powered job, pretty much everybody is motivated to get the job done. Call-outs are very rare. There was no such thing as a manager, because nobody needs to be monitored. When it was time to grind, people would be there until eight, nine at night. Nobody complained....people were treated like adults. It was almost like running my own business....almost. In the shit jobs, total opposite. People whine and complain all the time. Call-outs are incredibly common, and enthusiasm is low. A lot of people don't want to do anything because the pay sucks, and comprehension skills are low. Thus, everything has to be rigidly structured, and requires the creation of a "middle management" class....the "supervisor."

At the end of the day, you get what you pay for. If you pay shit, you get shit. If you pay gold, you get gold.
 

The Cat

Just a Cat who hangs out at the Crossroads
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Oct 15, 2016
Messages
23,384
If the cash is there, I do not care. I do enjoy a pleasantly social work environment though.
 

Statice

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Sep 11, 2018
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12
Depends on what you are aiming for, and how long you can sustain a certain way of working.

Some prefer to do what they are best at as work, and let what they wish they are best at for leisure time.
Some merge the two, and end up doing what they are best at in a way they enjoy, or end up doing what they wish to do best, and after years become great at.
Whatever suits your boat !
 

Cellmold

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Messages
6,266
Considering I've had to leave my job because of the effect it was having on my mental health, I'd say his ideas don't work for everybody.

I've spent my life following jobs in order to become specialised in the manner suggested, because I had the same thought: That I could become skilled at something, even without the love of it and then use that to make myself valuable and so end up in that favorable position.

However the humanity of the situation gets in the way and there is a baseline to your nature, often invisible and yet flexible, but only so flexible. Bend it too much, too quickly and that's when you suffer from burnout. So I'm in my thirties, with nothing to show for it because I forced myself to do things I didn't love and the things I did love, were not profitable.

Which isn't to say you shouldn't make the effort, but a lot of this type of advice is from people who have already become successful in their lives and all analysis is retrospective, even if it is done immediately, as something has to be experienced before it can be analysed.

So people talk about the part they played and their own actions, but they don't often acknowledge the immutable nature of a situation or the luck of a situation.

There are people who have come from the most horrible circumstances to then turn their life into a meaningful and successful one. These are inspiring and often can be admired, but there is always the doubt about all the other people in similar circumstances who never broke away.

It takes immense amounts of resilience, fortitude, luck and (in many areas) a degree of moral compromise, in order to pursue something like that.
So if you feel you have that fortitude, then go for it, just be really fucking careful, there's a lot of snake-oil salesmen out there.
 

Tengri

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Mar 19, 2016
Messages
558
So I was reading a book called So Good They Can't Ignore You and the author says that following your passion or dream job is kinda bullshit. You need to get really good at something and make everyone knows about it. And when you reach this level you will get in your dream job, not because of what you do but because this gives an opportunity of being in more control of what you do when you do and this kind of stuff.

He says that even when your job is stressing you, it's best to find a way to get specialized so people can come to you. What do you guys think about that? To you, it's best to find a job that fits it's strengths or develop your strengths in the career you already choose?
This general advice is really context specific and depends on the industry and nature of work. Take healthcare, for instance: either a hospitalist or ICU and ER nurses have extremely stressful work environments with high risk and personal liability and long hours. Compare that to the low-key, slow pace of private practice specialist and office nurses and they may as well not be in the same field. Generally, though, it's important to find a career that is a compromise between your ideal self-image and dreamed of future and your inborn aptitude and personality traits. Chasing dreams however unlikely, can pay off for some. A childhood friend of mine has been an independent artist since her undergrad and now works in Budapest doing what she loves. Another became a nun (no, really). Others, like myself, chased a lot of different dreams and luckily found a field that combined these somewhat disparate interests in one kind of work. Of the fastest growing industries, specialization is mandatory and degree-dependent outside of trade work. To take my step-dad's sobering advice when I was a teenager, it's fine if you want to become an anthropologist, but you won't find a job after you graduate, over-educated and specialized or not. There has to be a market for your knowledge and degree.
 

Scaven

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Jan 10, 2020
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62
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When passion means energy required, that makes workers enthusiastic in their work, following passion is actually a good advice in the long run, even tough it may not be well paid just yet. Generally speaking, A role in a job that you are assigned to may be not well suited for you. It could be harmful, so could be the best when we are not assigned to the role.

A lot of executive jobs are so standardized to the extent to which creativity are not appreciated. May be What they appreciate is to follow the procedure. Doing that for a living will not be feasible for me professionally, and mentally. I see NO SPECIALIST in standardized executive work. Specializing can be more achievable when worker are following their passion rather than following procedure.

I dream to find jobs that best fit with my nature of energy. Probably it is an entrepreneurial one.

I agree. Unless you are extremely bad at what you dream to do, unless you’re ok to make less money, you should take the one you are good in. But only if you are really bad at it. I believe someone who loves what he does will certainly be more successful than the one who does it simply for money. I made an apprentice ship as an electronic technician and although I was really interested in it when I started, I quickly lost interest. There was another guy in my class that had similar grades than me in math and I was at the end even better than him in physics, but he had way better grades in Electrotechnics, Computer science and Programming. Why? Because he was passionate about it. Because of this, I ditched a bachelor in Electrotechnics for a bachelor’s in industrial engineering and Management because I know that guys like him will always overshadow me. So it's time for me to overshadow others.

To make it short, do what you are passionate about, because passion boosts your learning capacities. But that is simply my opinion formed by my own experience, no studies or anything.
 
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