A reader writes:
I read all the letters here, and it feels like everybody loves their job and are passionate about it. need to be honest: I don’t love mine. I fell into it and just kept going with it because it paid decently and allowed me to not to have to worry about what I was going to do after college. Now, 15 years later… I feel almost stuck, like it might be too late to change what I am doing with my life (and to be honest, I have no idea what I want to do with my life; I work to live, and that’s fine by me).
However, I am okay with that. I am not particularly ambitious with my work. Middle management is fine with me, and I dream of the day I can retire. I like my coworkers, my job is fine. However, I feel guilty that I am ok with “fine,” like I should I be ambitious, and wanting more, more, more.
Nobody ever admits to this and it even seems bad to admit out loud, but am the only one out there who doesn’t really love their work and their job? Who just… does it because they have to? I even googled books but it’s all about being career-oriented and professional goal seeking. Is there anything out there to validate my feelings of being “meh” about work?
I guess I just want validations that there are others like me out there, and since I read your blog every day, I thought I would turn to you.
You’re so very, very normal! In fact, as far as I know, you’re actually in the majority.
Most people work to live, aren’t especially passionate about their jobs, and aren’t super ambitious.
Most people work to get food and housing, not for emotional or spiritual fulfillment.
There are people who are passionate about their work, but they’re the lucky exceptions, not the norm.
Keep in mind, too, that that the people who read and comment on a work-related advice site are more likely to be particularly interested in work and career issues than the general population. So you’re not necessarily seeing a representative sampling here.
If you are reasonably content and able to earn a living that allows you to support your life outside of work (and it sounds like you are), go on doing what you’re doing.