Hi everyone! My name is Clare and I blog over at Fitting It All In. I basically just babble about my life, my ever-changing workouts, some of my favorite meals and my daily outfits. Check it out if you want. I like when people say hi 🙂
I graduated from Notre Dame almost two years ago, and since then I’ve had two different full-time jobs along with being in health coaching school and maintaining that little blog thing. It’s a little busy and I don’t have quite as much free time as some of my friends, but I’ve been following my passions and trying to create a life that I love, so it’s totally worth it.
About that whole “life that I love” thing. That’s a nice thought right? Being able to do what you love and make money off of it? Being truly happy and excited every morning when you wake up? Maybe even getting to wake up when YOU want to because you’re your own boss? Yeah that’s nice, but most people don’t have that. Most people don’t think that’s a realistic possibility, especially if you’re young. I dealt with that. I was told by my own parents that “happiness” and “work” just don’t go together. You just find a job, work hard, make money, and live. If you’re lucky your work doesn’t completely stress you out and make you miserable, but being actually HAPPY at work? That’s just not always in the cards.
But why not? Who says you can’t do what you love? Why are people so afraid to follow their passions?
I actually really enjoy my job as an account executive at a small agency in Dallas. Getting here was a pretty rocky process, and you can read more about quitting my previous job in this post. I had a pretty good gig going, a great boss that didn’t suck, at a big shoe company that provided a good pay check and even an MBA, but I wasn’t happy. Society told me to stick it out and deal with the stress, but my heart told me I could find something better. It took a lot of courage, but I now get to put together marketing plans and handle social media accounts for interesting clients. Sometimes when I’m researching health and fitness blogs I will get in trouble. Could this really be my work?
I also really love health and nutrition, and after starting my blog I decided I wanted to make a bigger place for that passion in my life. I did my research and I found the Institute for Integrative Nutrition last year, and despite a bit of uncertainty from my parents, I enrolled. Sure I’m not even 25, and sure it’s not an M.D. or an R.D., but it’s a holistic approach that I believe in and the lectures I listen to excite me. I have confidence that I can make a difference in other people’s lives.
Since I do have a full-time job, I can’t focus on health coaching full-time right now. I got a little discouraged and thought I would just remove that dream from my life for the time being, until some classmates whipped me into shape. There’s no reason I can’t brainstorm the possibilities and make room for everything that I love. There’s no reason I have to follow a mold and do things the prescribed way.
Now I have created my own system that allows me to health coach at night and on the weekends. Even doing this I was worried that I’d feel overwhelmed and too busy, but I was quickly reminded that it won’t feel cumbersome if it’s something I love.
My jobs make me happy. My full-time job in advertising where I get to work with incredibly successful and inspiring colleagues makes me happy, even though it’s not that prestigious program that I started right after college. Writing my blog and receiving emails and comments from readers-turned-friends makes me happy, even if it means putting myself out there and occasionally getting some criticism. And coaching other girls that are struggling to find their own version of health makes me happy, even if it means going against the grain and using some of my free time to do so.
I’m not saying every day is easy or that I never get stressed, but there is no reason you can’t find fulfilling work. You may have to think outside the box and put in a little extra effort to make it happen, but if you believe in yourself and you believe that you deserve happiness, you can create your own life.
Here are my Six Steps to Loving Your Job:
- Brainstorm your passions. What do you do when you’re procrastinating? What do you get lost in and forget the time? What invigorates you?
- Research careers in that area. Get creative here. There are some seriously awesome jobs out there such as designing the Google Doodles, managing the races at Disney Theme Parks, and personal shopping. If the job you want doesn’t pay enough, figure out some other things you can do with it to make ends meet. There are no limits!
- Determine how your passion can fit into your life. Is it reasonable for this to be your full-time job? Is there a way to keep your hobby but start to make money off of it? Is it going to be a gradual process or can you dive right in?
- Figure out what you need to do to be successful. Be realistic. If your skills aren’t quite where they need to be yet, you may need to consider more education or more practice. Talk to those currently in that field and get their honest advice.
- Get Involved. You may not be working in your chosen field yet, but start integrating yourself. Attend lectures or events. Network online and tell people your plans. The more you let people know, the more accountability you’ll have and the more real it will become. You are going to do this!
- DO IT. Don’t let the only thing holding you back be your fear. Be reasonable, but make an action plan for getting where you want to be. Start at the beginning and make a little progress each day. It may take a while, but you’ll get there! You can’t finish a marathon without taking the first step.