Alex Chiri's Blog

Work, enjoying it, choosing it

I am not a supporter of the "finding your passion" narrative, but I do think you need to enjoy some aspects of what you do as work. And it shouldn't be like junk food, a distraction from other parts of your life, because that is also harmful.

I was lucky to be exposed as a small child to a world that I enjoyed exploring every day and that would also become a main part of my work, but not everyone is that lucky.

It is pretty common for parents to push their children to study and begin working in a job or field that pays well and seems to have a promising future. The safety of having a well-paid job for as long as possible is an important aspect of being satisfied with your work, but not if you hate every second of it. That makes people focus more on the material side, to the disadvantage of the quality of work they are doing. And it doesn't make them happier.

Nowadays, the argument that you should choose a job based on how big of a return you might get on the investment of studying for it, is pretty poor. It is very hard to make a safe bet on this one, because everything changes so fast. Technology evolving, climate change, political events, can have an impact on how current professions might look like in the future, if they even exist at all.

I am more inclined into towards building breadth in whatever field one chooses. Learn wide on a variety of topics and try not to specialize too much or for too long. Specialization is a bet that has small chances to pay out on a long term. Or even if one chooses to specialize, one should be curious and learn complementary things, to make it easier to re-specialize if the need demands it.

So find something you somewhat enjoy doing, become good at it and then explore its neighboring professions or practices. Get good at them as well. Continue, rinse, repeat, revisit, never stop learning.