First Blog of the New Year, When and Why Did We Lose Our Passion?

January 7, 2013 at 10:03 am Leave a comment

When I was a kid many years ago now, we looked up to those in the “professional” fields. Doctors, nurses, teachers, policemen, educators, firefighters, and of course cowboys. These people and many more in other fields were our heroes. They made us well when we were sick, protected us from the bad guys and taught us. We wanted to be like them. We didn’t care how much it paid. Looking back I would say that these people also didn’t think about he pay either, they chose their field because they had a passion for it.

I wish to cite an example. Paul Moore just passed away recently. He was 94. He was an educator all his life. I remember him as my redheaded, pipe smoking principal of Warren G. Harding elementary school in East Saint Louis, IL. He was a kind; soft-spoken man who you could tell loved his job. He loved it so much he did it all his life. He had a passion for being an educator.

When my first wife and I decided to go to college in our late thirties, we didn’t think about which field would make us the most money. We were concerned with doing what we were passionate about. She had a passion for helping others so she got a Masters in Social work. I had a passion for creating things and solving creative problems so I became a graphic artist. We both excelled in school and became good in our chosen professions. However, neither paid well, but we paid our bills.

After her death in 2005 I continued to ply my trade and still do. I’m very good at it. I have great creative ideas. Still I’m not making millions in the stock market nor do I live off my accumulated investments. I have to produce to make a living and I have a passion for it. There is great satisfaction for me in what I do.

So when did our society stop being passionate about what we do and why? One used to go to college with the idea of doing what would make them happy, now young people go into fields that will make them the most money, ignoring the satisfaction of doing something you have a passion for. Have we become that greedy as a society? Have we put money above the need to do something good for the whole? More and more the people we depend on for our safety and good health and overall development are losing ground financially. Maybe this is why they go into other fields.

Passion can be a very good thing. It can give us the energy to overcome any obstacle. It can drive us to do good things in life. It can provide a satisfaction that you can only get when you are deeply dedicated to doing something good. Sadly we have changed the focus of our passion to making more money. Money and wealth in and of itself doesn’t give a person true satisfaction. When you put it first you become a slave to its obtainment. When you have passion, you put satisfaction, accomplishment, and a sense of doing good first and the money comes on it’s own in it’s own time.

Don’t get me wrong. I like money. I like what it can provide like security and leisure. I also like paying my bills on time, but money doesn’t provide me happiness. It can provide the things that I can be happy with but only my passion and myself can bring happiness and satisfaction to my table.

I guess the bottom line is this: Passion about your work is as important as water. Without it we cannot grow or live. Without it we just become money machines and someone else reaps the benefits. Being a money zombie is not a life I wish to have. How about you?

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