15 Ways To Start Doing What You Love as a Career (Plus Tips)

Updated June 30, 2023

If you're considering different career paths or thinking about making a career change, it's important to consider your interests and passions. When you do what you love, you're often more productive and feel more fulfilled with your work, which impacts other areas of your life. Learning about what it entails to do what you love for work and how to start pursuing your passions can help you secure a job that fulfills and excites you.

In this article, we discuss reasons to do what you love, list 15 ways to do what you love for work and offer tips to help you consider whether doing what you love is right for you.

Key takeaways:

  • When your career involves doing something that you're passionate about, you can feel more fulfilled at work, which can have a positive impact on all areas of your life.

  • Talking to friends and family, thinking about what you loved to do when you were young and making a list of what you do well are ways to find a job that involves doing what you love.

  • Once you find a new career path that you'd like to pursue, find a mentor, talk to career counselors and take classes to learn about pursuing a job in the field and becoming successful.

Reasons to do what you love

Being passionate about what you do for work can offer many benefits. Here are a few reasons to pursue a job doing what you love:

  • You may feel more fulfilled. Loving what you do can make you feel happier and more fulfilled every day, which can positively affect your attitude in the workplace and outside of it.

  • You may be more productive. You may experience more motivation throughout the day if you enjoy your work. Feeling motivated can help you stay focused and productive.

  • You may be more successful. You may be more successful in your role if you're excited about your work. Having a passion for your work can motivate you to excel.

Read more: Finding a Career You Love (With Tips)

15 ways to do what you love for work

Here are 15 ways to find a job doing what you love:

1. Consider what you loved when you were young

Often, your true passions emerge when you're young. If you're beginning to look for a job you love, start by reflecting on what you most enjoyed when you were a child. For example, you may have loved taking care of people or writing. Look for careers where you can enjoy more activities like the ones you loved as a child.

Related: 6 Ways To Find Your Passion for a More Fulfilling Life

2. Talk to your friends

Your friends and family can often help you gain a clear perspective, as they've seen you when you were happiest and most enthusiastic. They may offer insight about what they noticed makes you the most comfortable. Additionally, talking to friends who share your passions and interests may help expand your network. Having friends who work in roles related to your passions is a great way to learn about job opportunities in your preferred field.

3. Consider what you would do if money wasn't an issue

While you need to consider the financial aspect of any job you're considering, you should also ask yourself what you would do for a career if money wasn't an issue. For example, you might be interested in working with children or helping animals. While your career should provide financial security, it shouldn't be your primary consideration when looking for a job that meets your interests.

Related: How To Find the Best Job for You in 6 Steps

4. Identify a personal hero

Another step you can take is to consider who you most admire professionally. Consider what you want to emulate about them or their career. If possible, consider reaching out to that person to learn how they got to their position. If they're unreachable, try reading articles or books describing their professional success journey.

5. Consider what you do well

While it's important to do what you love, it's also important to consider what you do well. Make a list of all your talents and consider how those overlap with what you most enjoy doing. Then, narrow your list of things you want and do well down to the top three. You can use this list to help guide your decision-making as you consider career paths.

Related: How To Choose Between a Job for Money or Passion

6. Take steps to turn your idea into reality

Once you've decided on the idea you want to turn into your career, take steps to make that happen. Identify what you need to accomplish to qualify for that career, such as a specific degree or certification, then the steps to reach that goal. Consider planning out specific milestones. Setting specific dates for when to complete each goal can help you track your progress toward achieving them.

Related: 10 Effective Goal-Setting Techniques for Achieving Your Goals

7. Surround yourself with supportive people

As you pursue a career doing what you love, it's important to surround yourself with positive, supportive people. This can help you keep moving forward on days when you may feel discouraged and feel braver as you pursue your intended career path. Talking to supportive people about your career goals may also help you gain insight from other people's perspectives on how you can work toward your objectives.

8. Find a mentor

Try to contact professionals in your network currently holding the job you want. If there's no one in your network, use job-related social media sites to identify people who have those positions. You can then reach out to them and start a conversation. Let them know you're interested in changing careers and want to learn more about their position. Many may be receptive to offering insight and guidance. Ask about any education they recommend, skills developed and jobs or experiences they had before their current role that made them more qualified.

Related: How To Find a Mentor in 5 Steps

9. Talk to a career counselor

A career counselor can offer professional insight and access to specific tools or resources to help you pursue a job doing what you love. Additionally, they might recommend other closely related jobs that allow you to pursue your passion. Career counselors often have contacts with professionals in various industries, so they may also help you connect with people already established in your field of interest.

10. Take classes

You might need additional education if you're changing career paths to pursue your passion. Even if it's not required, you may still want to seek some professional instruction or certifications to become a stronger job candidate and set yourself apart from other applicants. Taking classes can also be a great way to meet others pursuing similar goals. You can find support networks through your classes. Connecting with instructors who educate emerging professionals in your field can also help you expand your network.

Related: Frequently Asked Questions About How To Find What You Love

11. Save money

Since it can take time to change careers, consider saving money so you can confidently support yourself financially during your transition. Having savings to cover the cost of your bills can ease the pressure and help you feel confident in your decision to change careers, especially if the new position comes with a smaller salary. Prepare for how your new career may change your finances, and have a plan for how to meet your living expenses based on your new salary.

12. Learn all you can about your preferred industry

Once you know what it is you want to do, start using social networks to connect with people who hold that job or work in the industry you want to enter. You should also find and read relevant blogs and forums to learn about the job from people who currently hold the position. Another way to learn about the position and its requirements is to read job descriptions companies have posted. This can help you better understand the types of responsibilities for the role, its typical requirements and what the work environment may be like.

Related: How To Thoughtfully Answer "What Are You Passionate About?"

13. Attend networking events

One of the best ways to learn about career opportunities is to talk with people who hold the job you want. Start looking for networking events within your desired industry and use them as an opportunity to connect with others and build relationships. Networking can help you create professional contacts which can help you during your job search.

Related: 12 Ways To Identify Compelling Networking Opportunities

14. Be patient

Finding a job doing what you love takes time and persistence. Be prepared to encounter challenges and obstacles along the way, but maintain the confidence and patience to keep moving forward. When facing challenges in pursuing your goals, remind yourself of what inspired you to start working toward your dream career.

15. Try it

Ultimately, the only way to secure a job doing what you love is to take the necessary steps to pursue that path. This could mean signing up for a class, recreating your resume, and applying for jobs. Identify what you most want and start taking steps to achieve that goal.

Related: 28 Quotes About Loving Your Job

Tips to determine whether you should get a job doing what you love

While there are several compelling reasons to get a job doing what you love, it may not be the path for everyone. Here are a few tips to help you decide whether pursuing a career you love is right for you:

Determine your passion

You may have multiple passions, or you may not have one at all. If either of these applies to you, it may be better to focus on finding work that engages or challenges you. You can enjoy your work even if you don't consider it a passion. Additionally, if you have many passions, you may prefer the flexibility of pursuing them outside your primary job.

Evaluate your finances

While you may want to pursue a career doing what you love, consider your financial goals. Some careers offer higher earning potentials than others, so choosing a career that helps you meet your financial needs is important. It can take time to start earning your full potential in a career, so have a plan to manage your finances if you change careers.

Related: 10 Examples of Finance Goals (And Why They're Important)

Consider your work experience

Reflect on your current level of work experience. If you're an emerging professional with little direct experience, you may have more flexibility in pursuing your interests. Trying a variety of jobs can be a great way to learn about your passions, interests and work preferences.

If you're an experienced professional, consider what steps you need to take to change careers. You may have many applicable, transferrable skills to bring to your new career, but you may also need to gain new skills relevant to your new industry. Create a plan for your transition by researching what credentials you need to qualify for your new role.

Gauge your work-life balance needs

People sometimes prefer doing what they love in their spare time without trying to earn money. For example, you may be passionate about music or songwriting but prefer exploring these interests as a hobby. While it's important to pursue work that satisfies and engages you, it's also important to have activities you enjoy outside of the workplace. Consider how following your passions as a career may affect your work-life balance and reflect on what steps you can take to manage your personal and professional interests.

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