Exploding the dream machine: 5 myths — Business Management Daily: Free Reports on Human Resources, Employment Law, Office Management, Office Communication, Office Technology and Small Business Tax Business Management Daily

Exploding the dream machine: 5 myths

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A decade ago, the professional world floated high with the idea that you could quit the rat race and pursue whatever your heart desired.

Then the bubble burst, and now all the other bubbles have burst.

Still, you want to love what you do, and CEOs still say that one passionate employee is worth 10 dispassionate ones. How to resolve these seeming contradictions? Let’s start by trying to dispel some myths.

Myth 1:
People choose to change. In reality, employees don’t quit their jobs out of boredom. Most are pushed. They’re laid off or need more money or can’t stand their bosses.

Myth 2: The secret is passion.
In actuality, the great yuppie dream machine is more fantasy than reality. You can’t run an enterprise on passion alone. It also requires a market, astute decisions and hard work.

Myth 3: Dream jobs are dreamy all the time.
Every kind of work has hateful tasks—that’s why they call it “work.” But if you enjoy the results or believe in your mission (the shorthand: you’re not laying bricks but building a cathedral), the mundane tasks will be worth it.

Myth 4: You have one “calling.” Each of us has many possible careers, and most of us stumble into what we’re doing, good or not so good. Most of us grow into our careers through what engineers call a “positive feedback experience.”

Myth 5: You don’t know what you want. Of course you know: You want meaningful work, good colleagues and a little excitement. It’s hard to acknowledge, but opportunity may be staring you in the face. If you are ready to put up with some grunt work, stay humble and keep learning new things, you may be able to achieve a transformation.

— Adapted from “What Should I Do With My Life Now?” Po Bronson, Fast Company.

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