There is a bit of a cultural movement that life should be all laughter, happiness, and excitement, including your job. Your job should not feel like work because it will be your passion. If you aren’t passionate and happy at work, you should find a new job. While there is a modicum of truth to these statements, the overall idea is quite dangerous to you and your health and happiness.
First off, work is healthy. It keeps you sane. It gives you purpose. Second, work, no matter how wonderful of a job, will have bad moments. The main problem stems from the new (often associated with millennials) attitude towards work and money. This new attitude that money will pour in when you follow your passion: travel the world, write about it in a blog and make millions; talk about the latest video games, create a YouTube video and make millions. A bit of research and you will see just how many people are trying to make money blogging and vlogging and very quickly realize it is not realistic. It fundamentally comes down to attitude and expectations. If you continually change jobs, chasing your passion, searching for this perfect four-hour work week, you will roam aimlessly, unhappily looking for the unattainable. Should you enjoy your job and should it make you happy? Absolutely. If you dread Monday morning and feel physically and emotionally ill, that’s a different story. I’m talking about turning down jobs and filtering out only jobs that match some ideal scenario like some make-believe job where you can work from the beach, four hours per week, sipping a mai tai. Work is not a vacation and if you treat it like it is, you will be unhappy.
The idea that you should turn your passion into your job is, to be succinct, stupid. Passions change with time. Also, people generally become passionate about what they are good at, rather than some innate thing. People become passionate when they see their work helping others, when they become an expert in something, and receive praise for what they do. Passion evolves and changes. With the right attitude, your job can be very rewarding, it will help others, will give you a sense of purpose, and quite likely, if you weren’t passionate about it at first, a passion for your work will grow with time.
Overall, work is healthy, don’t treat it like something to be avoided. Passions change and grow, they’re not something to be searched for and formed into a job. Don’t be fooled into thinking a four hour work week is a goal to be attained, but rather that work is, ultimately, an enjoyable experience, keeps you sane, and that you’ll want to work much more than four hours per week.