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The Difference Between a Career And a Job

By Erik Folgate

I was talking to my wife the other night about decisions that I wish I would have never made in the past. One of them was jumping on a job right out of college just because it paid a decent paycheck. I told her that if I was smart, I would have worked a menial job and wait for the right opportunity in a field of work that I enjoy. Instead, I took a job that I am not passionate about and the pay isn’t that great.

Have you made a decision similar to this? Do you wake up in the morning and have a hard time mustering enough energy to drive to work? I understand. I may spend the rest of my life helping people make the right career decision whenever I get the chance. Maybe I won’t become a career coach, but I will definitely be an influencer in helping people find meaningful work. I am a true believer that everyone is destined to spend their life working in a career field that they are passionate about. We find ourselves in dead-end jobs when we make quick decisions and let money be the motivating factor. You need enjoyment to be your motivating factor. You will spend 75% of your life working, so it is crucial to be doing work that you love and enjoy.

Depression sets in. Weakness sets in. Laziness sets in. Relationships fail. Your body becomes less healthy. Your mind becomes less sharp. These are all things that can and will happen if your work is not enjoyable. I know that you need to put food on the table and pay the bills. I am not saying that you need to quit your job today, but you definitely need to formulate a strategy for switching careers in the next 18 – 36 months. This may involved learning a new trade, going to school, or saving a chunk of cash to start a new business.

List five things that you are passionate about and then come up with 3 different careers that could stem from that passion. If you are passionate about cooking then your three careers may be this: A personal chef, a restaurant owner, or a culinary arts professor. If you love sports, you could be a personal trainer, start a sports league, or be a coach.

Think big and think realistically, but don’t let realistic become pessimistic. Obviously, it may be too late to become an astronaut or a professional baseball player, but many other careers are viable options just waiting for you to explore. Ask yourself this question every morning when you wake up? What is stopping me from pursuing my dreams?

Erik Folgate
Erik and his wife, Lindzee, live in Orlando, Florida with a baby boy on the way. Erik works as an account manager for a marketing company, and considers counseling friends, family and the readers of Money Crashers his personal ministry to others. Erik became passionate about personal finance and helping others make wise financial decisions after racking up over $20k in credit card and student loan debt within the first two years of college.

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  • William

    Thx for this advice, it was very helpful.

  • Shelly

    Thanks for the article. I hate my job, I wished I could have read this two years ago.

  • sudipta jana

    Thank you for the article

  • Fined4u

    A job is all about the money, how much and when. A carrer is a passion that you enhance everyday and the money will come with the experience. It’s great when you make money having fun in what you do.

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