Do What You Love – A Myth

The world would be a better place if more people were doing what they love. Because we are happier when we discover our passions. I am pretty sure that at least once in your lifetime (so far..) you have heard ” Do what you Love.” Well, it’s funny coz that’s not how it ends up for most of us. I am talking about our career path.

We are multifaceted people who are equally complicated. We don’t just love one thing right? Well i surely don’t… and sometimes i begin to have  thoughts like, what if I was a dancer…. ooo ooo wait!! musician!! or an artist or maybe a runway fashion designer! So I guess I have too many things I love and hence I can’t choose a career based on what I love.

As a young girl, I was often found entertaining myself – whether it was drawing, playing a make-shift piano (I got a real piano a little later), reading, dancing or riding my bike with my sisters. I lived in a fairytale world. I loved connecting to people. I loved performing for people. I loved entertaining people. One of the biggest impact in my life was when I was 6 or 7. I was watching the news whereby thin hungry children who looked like a bag of bones but with big tummies (kwashiorkor) were being given food aid. I always thought that one day, I would be handing these big biscuits to these kids.

Anyway, fast forward…. I went through high school and college. It was one of a kind experience for me! I currently have a Bachelor of Medicine Bachelor of Surgery degree. Yes that’s right!! Totally not what i expected, but i glided through med school as a back-bencher and not over the top achiever (unlike Hermione Granger in Harry Porter series). Med school years is where i actually grew up! And the big question is whether i am doing what I love? I still have no clue after serving the community for 10 years. I must add that i am practicing medicine and have chosen Emergency Medicine & Trauma as my lifetime path in medical career. 

If I looked carefully, my career decision was not a decision about “what do I love most?” Career decisions are about what kind of life do I want to set up for myself? So it was the fact that as I grew up thinking I would one day hand out food aid to the needy got me to where I am now.  Though I could not save everyone, I certainly felt that I was making a difference by giving back to this world in my small way. The reward for doing a job is contributing to something larger than you are, participating in society, and being valued in the form of money. So, if i actually loved money, i would have left my job and formed my band (The non-existent “Ash on Blonde”) and pursued in my dream of becoming a musician and rocking my life!!! Oh i might also have to sell my art work in order to get rich and famous!

I went on a quarter life crisis as i did not know if I had made the right decision (my biological clock crisis was also in the way) and thank god I did not succumb to depression. I had thoughts of wanting to quit my current job and actually doing what I loved. But, then I realised, it’s a mambo-jumbo of stuffs and it might be a career catastrophe waiting to happen. Well I am way past all that now as I have a clear idea in my mind. I did not do what I loved, I did who I am. So, that’s how I chose my career.

And just like that, I chose to categorise “Do what you love” as a myth. Choosing a job, actually any job that defines your strength is what will get you going. Doing what I love is not so important to me now but I have learnt to value love in relationships. And that’s what i am doing…….making relationships in the process of building my career.

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