I recently got promoted at work.
There were congratulations all around from friends, coworkers, family and my customers I see on a daily basis. Deep down, I felt proud and excited for the new challenge coming my way. Yes, I do deserve this.
The other part of me was wondering if it was the right decision for me. Being in sales, I know this position will be a lot more stress and I will be thinking about it 24/7. I’m very good at what I do and I enjoy the process of relationship building, but I don’t handle the stress of meeting quota very well. Really, who does? Some people thrive meeting numbers if they are passionate about the company and product. Maybe its the commission and bonuses they receive that helps them thrive. I’ve heard both pros and cons to this.
I’ve held many jobs in my career–some much better than others and I’ve come to realize, for me, my success depends on my passion. I need to have a passion for my work, the company, the product and I need to continuously feel challenged. There were jobs where I would continuously count the hours until I could leave because I had no passion for the company or didn’t believe in the product. I felt like I was just filling space in a cubicle doing something mundane that didn’t really do much for the world as a whole. Then I started with a company in San Francisco and I truly believed in the product and the management. It was cutting edge, fun, challenging. I was happy. But not all great things last forever. My happiness and confidence came crashing down with the economy in 2001.
I once again needed to reevaluate my career. I was never a career girl, per say, gunning for the VP job or corner office. I don’t think I ever felt smart or confident enough to be in the high positions. I wanted to be happy going to work and getting paid. Money was never my motivator. Passion and happiness were.
I spent the next decade trying to find that position that made me feel like the one in San Francisco. I enjoyed a few of them, but some were a good job at the time with no career path or in an industry that was a dinosaur and overly regulated which resulted in layoffs.
In the meantime, my passion for writing woke up and I wrote a novel, took on blogging for pay, and realized I was really creative. However, being creative doesn’t always translate into a well paying job. They are out there, just very elusive. I do believe in the law of attraction, so if I want it bad enough, I will find it. It might take work and time, but it will happen.
As for now, I will enjoy the promotion and strengthening the skills I already have. Everything is a learning experience and enriches us somehow. I have never believed that our job defines us. Some people work 8-5 and never look to work an extra hour of overtime. They have no passion for their career, but they have passion for their families, traveling or other hobbies. Others live for their jobs and thank goodness they do because that’s why we have doctors and small business owners. I truly believe if you can find that passion and make money at it, you’ve won the lottery.
But either way is fine. You’re job might define you or it might not. My work will never define me because I enjoy my life and hobbies outside of work so much more. However, if I find that job where I get to write full time and get paid well for it…that perspective might change.