42 results back to index
So Good They Can't Ignore You: Why Skills Trump Passion in the Quest for Work You Love by Cal Newport
Apple II, bounce rate, business cycle, Byte Shop, Cal Newport, capital controls, cleantech, Community Supported Agriculture, deliberate practice, financial independence, follow your passion, Frank Gehry, information asymmetry, job satisfaction, job-hopping, knowledge worker, Mason jar, medical residency, new economy, passive income, Paul Terrell, popular electronics, renewable energy credits, Results Only Work Environment, Richard Bolles, Richard Feynman, rolodex, Sand Hill Road, side project, Silicon Valley, Skype, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, web application, winner-take-all economy
Here’s what you can expect in the pages ahead: As mentioned, I didn’t get far in my quest before I realized, as Thomas did before me, that the conventional wisdom on career success—follow your passion—is seriously flawed. It not only fails to describe how most people actually end up with compelling careers, but for many people it can actually make things worse: leading to chronic job shifting and unrelenting angst when, as it did for Thomas, one’s reality inevitably falls short of the dream. With this as a starting point, I begin with Rule #1, in which I tear down the supremacy of this passion hypothesis. But I don’t stop there. My quest pushed me beyond identifying what doesn’t work, insisting that I also answer the following: If “follow your passion” is bad advice, what should I do instead?
We’ll also return to Thomas, who after his dispiriting realization at the monastery was able to return to his first principles, move his focus away from finding the right work and toward working right, and eventually build, for the first time in his life, a love for what he does. This is the happiness that you, too, should demand. It’s my hope that the insights that follow will free you from simplistic catchphrases like “follow your passion” and “do what you love”—the type of catchphrases that have helped spawn the career confusion that afflicts so many today—and instead, provide you with a realistic path toward a meaningful and engaging working life. RULE #1 Don’t Follow Your Passion Chapter One The “Passion” of Steve Jobs In which I question the validity of the passion hypothesis, which says that the key to occupational happiness is to match your job to a pre-existing passion.
When Stanford posted an official video, it gathered an additional 3 million views. The comments on these clips homed in on the importance of loving your work, with viewers summarizing their reactions in similar ways: “The most valuable lesson is to find your purpose, follow your passions…. Life is too short to be doing what you think you have to do.” “Follow your passions—life is for the living.” “Passion is the engine to living your life.” “[It’s] passion for your work that counts.” “ ‘Don’t Settle.’ Amen.” In other words, many of the millions of people who viewed this speech were excited to see Steve Jobs—a guru of iconoclastic thinking—put his stamp of approval on an immensely appealing piece of popular career advice, which I call the passion hypothesis: The Passion Hypothesis The key to occupational happiness is to first figure out what you’re passionate about and then find a job that matches this passion.
Quit Like a Millionaire: No Gimmicks, Luck, or Trust Fund Required by Kristy Shen, Bryce Leung
"side hustle", Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Airbnb, asset allocation, barriers to entry, buy low sell high, call centre, car-free, Columbine, cuban missile crisis, Deng Xiaoping, Elon Musk, fear of failure, financial independence, fixed income, follow your passion, hedonic treadmill, income inequality, index fund, longitudinal study, low cost airline, Mark Zuckerberg, mortgage debt, obamacare, offshore financial centre, passive income, Ponzi scheme, risk tolerance, risk/return, Silicon Valley, single-payer health, Snapchat, Steve Jobs, supply-chain management, the rule of 72, working poor, Y2K, Zipcar
Yuwen Wu, “China’s Class of 1977: I Took an Exam That Changed China,” BBC News, December 14, 2017, http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-china-42135342. 2. Karim, “Breaking Pencils,” Pencils for Africa, February 4, 2014, http://pencilsforafrica.com/breaking-pencils/. Chapter 4: Don’t Follow Your Passion (Yet) 1. Benjamin Todd, “To Find Work You Love, Don’t (Always) Follow Your Passion,” 80,000 Hours, last updated May 2016, https://80000hours.org/articles/dont-follow-your-passion/. 2. The Writers’ Union of Canada, Devaluing Creators, Endangering Creativity, https://www.writersunion.ca/sites/all/files/DevaluingCreatorsEndangeringCreativity_0.pdf. 3. The Daily, “University Tuition Fees, 2000/2001,” https://www150.statcan.gc.ca/n1/daily-quotidien/000828/dq000828b-eng.htm. 4.
I’m not here to tell you things you want to hear; I’m here to tell you the truth. But remember that the rule is “Don’t follow your passion (yet).” I’m not saying you can’t ever make money doing what you love. After all, you’re only reading this because I eventually was able to become an author. But you have to follow the rest of my advice first. Doing what you love and hoping for money to follow is risky. Follow the money first, and you can do what you love later. Not all degrees are created equal. Don’t follow your passion (yet). Follow the POT. And, yes, I wrote this entire chapter just to be able to close with that line.
Standing in the autographing area at BookExpo America in New York City, I couldn’t believe that after seven years in the writing trenches, I’d made it. Bryce and I were newly minted authors and there was a whole line of people waiting for a signed copy of Little Miss Evil, our children’s novel. Remember how I said in chapter 4, “Don’t follow your passion (yet)”? Well, I’ve been saving that “yet” for now. Once you’ve become financially independent, you are finally free to follow your passion, whatever that may be. Achieving your dream is the greatest feeling in the world—when you don’t have to worry about surviving on cans of cat food. Because that’s exactly what would’ve happened if I had pursued my passion before becoming financially independent.
The $100 Startup: Reinvent the Way You Make a Living, Do What You Love, and Create a New Future by Chris Guillebeau
Airbnb, big-box store, clean water, fixed income, follow your passion, if you build it, they will come, index card, informal economy, Kevin Kelly, Kickstarter, knowledge economy, late fees, Nelson Mandela, price anchoring, Ralph Waldo Emerson, side project, Silicon Valley, Skype, Steve Jobs, Tony Hsieh, web application
Are there other businesses serving this market (usually a good thing) but not in the same way you would? Note: Chapter 6 looks at market testing in more detail. If you’re not sure how to answer the marketplace questions, stay tuned. When I asked our group of unexpected entrepreneurs about the follow-your-passion model, I frequently heard a nuanced answer. Almost no one said, “Yes! You should always follow your passion wherever it leads.” Similarly, almost no one dismissed the idea out of hand. The nuance comes from the idea that passion plus good business sense creates an actual business. To understand how passion can sometimes translate into a profitable business, look at the chart on this page.
HD62.5.G854 2012 658.1′1—dc23 2012003093 eISBN: 978-0-307-95154-0 Illustrations: Mike Rohde Jacket design: Michael Nagin Jacket photography: Comstock/Getty Images v3.1 This book is for: those who take action and those who provide the inspiration ROAD MAP Cover Title Page Copyright Dedication PROLOGUE: Manifesto A short guide to everything you want. PART I UNEXPECTED ENTREPRENEURS 1. Renaissance You already have the skills you need—you just have to know where to look. 2. Give Them the Fish How to put happiness in a box and sell it. 3. Follow Your Passion … Maybe Get paid to do what you love by making sure it connects to what other people want. 4. The Rise of the Roaming Entrepreneur “Location, location, location” is overrated. 5. The New Demographics Your customers all have something in common, but it has nothing to do with old-school categories.
The first time we announced a workshop, it sold out in ninety minutes. We then offered spots in another workshop that wouldn’t be held for several months, and it sold out before lunchtime. Since it was clear we had found a demand for this information, I dug deeper. While hosting the workshops, I became interested in the “follow-your-passion” model—the idea that successful small businesses are often built on the pursuit of a personal hobby or interest. I conducted interviews with entrepreneurs all over the world and documented their stories for an online course called the Empire Building Kit. The course was the inspiration for launching the project on a wider scale and then for writing this book.
Doing Good Better: How Effective Altruism Can Help You Make a Difference by William MacAskill
barriers to entry, basic income, Black Swan, Branko Milanovic, Cal Newport, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, carbon footprint, clean water, corporate social responsibility, correlation does not imply causation, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, David Brooks, effective altruism, en.wikipedia.org, end world poverty, experimental subject, follow your passion, food miles, immigration reform, income inequality, index fund, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), Isaac Newton, job automation, job satisfaction, Lean Startup, M-Pesa, mass immigration, meta-analysis, microcredit, Nate Silver, Peter Singer: altruism, purchasing power parity, quantitative trading / quantitative ﬁnance, randomized controlled trial, self-driving car, Skype, Stanislav Petrov, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Steven Pinker, The Future of Employment, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, universal basic income, women in the workforce
At its most extreme, the talk around career choice sounds similar to the talk around romance: when you find your perfect fit, you’ll just know. Taken literally, however, the idea of following your passion is terrible advice. Finding a career that’s the right “fit” for you is crucial to finding a career, but believing you must find some preordained “passion” and then pursue jobs that match it is all wrong. Ask yourself, is following your passion a good way to achieve personal satisfaction in the job you love? Should you pick a career by identifying your greatest interest, finding jobs that “match” that interest and pursuing them no matter what?
SIX Why Voting Is Like Donating Thousands of Dollars to Charity: Question #5: What are the chances of success, and how good would success be? PART TWO EFFECTIVE ALTRUISM IN ACTION SEVEN Overhead Costs, CEO Pay, and Other Confusions: Which charities make the most difference? EIGHT The Moral Case for Sweatshop Goods: How can consumers make the most difference? NINE Don’t “Follow Your Passion”: Which careers make the most difference? TEN Poverty Versus Climate Change Versus . . . : Which causes are most important? CONCLUSION Becoming an Effective Altruist: What should you do right now? APPENDIX Thinking Like an Effective Altruist: The five key questions of effective altruism.
If, for example, encouraging someone to buy fair-trade causes that person to devote less time or money to other, more effective activities, then promoting fair-trade might on balance be harmful. • • • In this chapter, we’ve seen that the benefits of ethical consumerism are often small compared to the good that well-targeted donations can do. In the next chapter, we’ll look at an area where you really can make an astonishing difference: your career. NINE DON’T “FOLLOW YOUR PASSION” Which careers make the most difference? As Peter Hurford entered his final year at Denison University, he needed to figure out what he was going to do with his life. He was twenty-two, majoring in political science and psychology, and he knew he wanted a career that would both be personally satisfying and would make a big difference.
Company of One: Why Staying Small Is the Next Big Thing for Business by Paul Jarvis
Airbnb, big-box store, Cal Newport, call centre, corporate social responsibility, David Heinemeier Hansson, effective altruism, Elon Musk, en.wikipedia.org, endowment effect, follow your passion, gender pay gap, glass ceiling, Inbox Zero, independent contractor, index fund, job automation, Kickstarter, Lyft, Mark Zuckerberg, Naomi Klein, passive investing, Paul Graham, pets.com, remote work: asynchronous communication, remote working, Results Only Work Environment, ride hailing / ride sharing, Ruby on Rails, side project, Silicon Valley, Skype, Snapchat, software as a service, Steve Jobs, supply-chain management, Tim Cook: Apple, too big to fail, uber lyft, web application, Y Combinator, Y2K
A well-cited 2003 study of college students at the University of Quebec by Robert Vallerand found that they were more passionate about sports, arts, and music than anything they were studying. Unfortunately, only 3 percent of all jobs can be found in the sports, music, and art industries. And just because you’re passionate about, say, tennis doesn’t mean you can become the next Serena Williams, no matter how hard you try. “Follow your passion” is irresponsible business advice. Barbara Corcoran, a real estate investor and a “shark” on the popular television show Shark Tank, said that she didn’t follow her passion; instead, she discovered it by accident as she worked her ass off. Her passion came after her hard work—as a result of it—not the other way around.
When you focus on solving problems or on making a difference, passion may follow, because you’re actually involved in the work you’re doing instead of just dreaming that you might be passionate about something. Cal Newport, the best-selling author of So Good They Can’t Ignore You, argues that passion is the side effect of mastery. To Newport, following your passion is fundamentally flawed as a career strategy because it fails to describe how most successful people ended up with compelling careers and can lead to chronic job-shifting and angst when your reality falls short of your passionate dream for your career. Newport believes that we need to be craftspeople, focused on getting better and better at how we use our skills, in order to be valuable to our company and its customers.
Engaging work comprises four key components: clearly defined assignments, tasks you excel at, performance feedback, and work autonomy. All this being said, countless books, bloggers, and business leaders will continue to tell you that the key ingredient to a happy, meaningful life is to find the courage to follow your passion. This call is alluring, especially when it seems like others have simply packed up their nine-to-five lives, jumped headfirst into their passions, and ended up thriving. But what I’ve noticed is that there are two key ingredients that most successful businesspeople don’t talk about when they’re giving keynote speeches about how smart they were to make their leap into a more passion-filled work life.
The New Prophets of Capital by Nicole Aschoff
3D printing, affirmative action, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Airbnb, American Legislative Exchange Council, basic income, Bretton Woods, clean water, collective bargaining, commoditize, crony capitalism, feminist movement, follow your passion, Food sovereignty, glass ceiling, global supply chain, global value chain, helicopter parent, hiring and firing, income inequality, Khan Academy, late capitalism, Lyft, Mark Zuckerberg, mass incarceration, means of production, performance metric, post-work, profit motive, rent-seeking, Ronald Reagan, Rosa Parks, school vouchers, shareholder value, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Slavoj Žižek, structural adjustment programs, Tim Cook: Apple, urban renewal, women in the workforce, working poor, zero-sum game
We spend years acquiring social capital (connections, access to networks) and cultural capital (skills and education) so we can find a job we love and hopefully keep a roof over our heads. The “do what you love” message is at the heart of the work-identity fusion. It advises you to follow your passion. If you’re unhappy, it’s because you’re not following your passion. If your job sucks, you’re at the wrong job. Video blogger and social media guru Gary Vaynerchuk’s famous TED Talk is a “shot in the arm” for those pining for a more fulfilling life: There are way too many people in this room right now that are doing stuff they hate.
In 2011, Fox Searchlight Pictures was charged with violating the Fair Labor Standards Act, and since then similar lawsuits have been filed against other companies, including Warner Music Group, Atlantic Music, and publishing houses Condé Nast and Hearst Corporation. In October 2014, NBC Universal settled a class-action lawsuit brought by a group of its interns for $4.6 million. Following your passion and doing what you love may also require you to forgo job stability and long-term employment on the always changing, always moving road to self-actualization. But job stability is rare these days: The average Millennial spends only 2.6 years at a company today. Some 30 percent of the US workforce is contingent labor, and by some estimates, 40 to 50 percent of jobs that produce an income will be organized as short-term, contract work by 2020.
The Four: How Amazon, Apple, Facebook, and Google Divided and Conquered the World by Scott Galloway
activist fund / activist shareholder / activist investor, additive manufacturing, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Airbnb, Amazon Web Services, Apple II, autonomous vehicles, barriers to entry, Ben Horowitz, Bernie Sanders, big-box store, Bob Noyce, Brewster Kahle, business intelligence, California gold rush, cloud computing, commoditize, cuban missile crisis, David Brooks, disintermediation, don't be evil, Donald Trump, Elon Musk, follow your passion, future of journalism, future of work, global supply chain, Google Earth, Google Glasses, Google X / Alphabet X, Hacker Conference 1984, Internet Archive, invisible hand, Jeff Bezos, Jony Ive, Khan Academy, longitudinal study, Lyft, Mark Zuckerberg, meta-analysis, Network effects, new economy, obamacare, Oculus Rift, offshore financial centre, passive income, Peter Thiel, profit motive, race to the bottom, RAND corporation, ride hailing / ride sharing, risk tolerance, Robert Mercer, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence, self-driving car, sentiment analysis, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, Snapchat, software is eating the world, speech recognition, Stephen Hawking, Steve Ballmer, Steve Bannon, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Stewart Brand, supercomputer in your pocket, Tesla Model S, Tim Cook: Apple, Travis Kalanick, Uber and Lyft, Uber for X, uber lyft, undersea cable, Whole Earth Catalog, winner-take-all economy, working poor, you are the product, young professional
If your boss isn’t fighting for you, you either have a bad boss or you are a bad employee. Manage Your Career Take responsibility for your own career, and manage it. People will tell you to “follow your passion.” This, again, is bullshit. I would like to be quarterback for the New York Jets. I’m tall, have a good arm, decent leadership skills, and would enjoy owning car dealerships after my knees go. However, I have marginal athletic ability—learned this fast at UCLA. People who tell you to follow your passion are already rich. Don’t follow your passion, follow your talent. Determine what you are good at (early), and commit to becoming great at it. You don’t have to love it, just don’t hate it.
You don’t have to love it, just don’t hate it. If practice takes you from good to great, the recognition and compensation you will command will make you start to love it. And, ultimately, you will be able to shape your career and your specialty to focus on the aspects you enjoy the most. And if not—make good money and then go follow your passion. No kid dreams of being a tax accountant. However, the best tax accountants on the planet fly first class and marry people better looking than themselves—both things they are likely to be passionate about. Seeking Justice If you are seeking justice, you won’t find it in the corporate world.
Lifestyle Entrepreneur: Live Your Dreams, Ignite Your Passions and Run Your Business From Anywhere in the World by Jesse Krieger
Airbnb, always be closing, bounce rate, call centre, carbon footprint, commoditize, Deng Xiaoping, different worldview, financial independence, follow your passion, income inequality, independent contractor, iterative process, Ralph Waldo Emerson, search engine result page, Skype, software as a service, South China Sea, Steve Jobs
Before long I was studying for my Series 7 & 63 securities licenses to become an investment banker with a boutique investment bank that offered me a VP of Business Development title in exchange for merging my consulting practice with them. I accepted. One of my heroes has always been Steve Jobs, founder of Apple and Pixar. In a commencement speech at Stanford University he said that you can only connect the dots looking backwards. That following your passion can lead you to unexpected places, studying or working on projects that seem disconnected or random. But looking backwards, after the fact, there is a common thread that connects all of those experiences together and you’ll find that you got just the right information and experiences to prepare you for the next round of challenges and opportunities.
The idea was to take six somewhat ordinary guys and break all the boundaries of what’s possible in terms of lifestyle. From fashion consults and approaching attractive women in the streets to customized fitness programs and business mentoring, Project Rockstar was 56 days that challenged and replaced every conception of what I thought was possible! When you follow your passions, wherever unexpected places they may lead, you will inevitably stumble across some of your life purposes. I began Project Rockstar as an introvert, determined to become wealthy at all costs and finished a new man. No more anxiety about talking to strangers or speaking in front of groups and my conception of wealth transformed as well; now I value my time and mobility above just an ever-increasing bank balance.
The weekend getaway to Necker Island was part of a “Mastermind” group he joined hosted by Joe Polish, who has raised millions for Branson’s Virgin Unite charity. Taking his own advice, Akira joined the group to continue his own personal development and ended up partnering with Richard Branson to grow Virgin Unite Japan! So what is Akira’s advice for aspiring Lifestyle Entrepreneurs around the world? “Follow your passion, invest in your learning and learn from the best. Spend time with people who you want to become, be humble and be honest and do it right now!!” TIME TO GO SUPERNOVA! Firing on All Cylinders Discovering your identity and identifying the centerpiece activities that give you the greatest satisfaction puts you ahead of so many others who just drift through life without taking ownership of their desires.
The Job: The Future of Work in the Modern Era by Ellen Ruppel Shell
3D printing, affirmative action, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Airbnb, airport security, Albert Einstein, Amazon Mechanical Turk, basic income, Baxter: Rethink Robotics, big-box store, blue-collar work, Buckminster Fuller, call centre, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, Clayton Christensen, cloud computing, collective bargaining, computer vision, corporate governance, corporate social responsibility, creative destruction, crowdsourcing, deskilling, disruptive innovation, Donald Trump, Downton Abbey, Elon Musk, Erik Brynjolfsson, factory automation, follow your passion, Frederick Winslow Taylor, future of work, game design, glass ceiling, hiring and firing, immigration reform, income inequality, independent contractor, industrial robot, invisible hand, Jeff Bezos, job automation, job satisfaction, John Markoff, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, Joseph Schumpeter, Kickstarter, knowledge economy, knowledge worker, Kodak vs Instagram, labor-force participation, low skilled workers, Lyft, manufacturing employment, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, means of production, move fast and break things, move fast and break things, new economy, Norbert Wiener, obamacare, offshore financial centre, Paul Samuelson, precariat, Ralph Waldo Emerson, risk tolerance, Robert Gordon, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Rodney Brooks, Ronald Reagan, Second Machine Age, self-driving car, shareholder value, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Snapchat, Steve Jobs, The Chicago School, The Theory of the Leisure Class by Thorstein Veblen, Thomas L Friedman, Thorstein Veblen, Tim Cook: Apple, Uber and Lyft, uber lyft, universal basic income, urban renewal, WeWork, white picket fence, working poor, Y Combinator, young professional, zero-sum game
“burdens to be escaped as promptly as possible” Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience (New York: Harper Perennial Modern Classics, 2008), 149. “In the glorification of ‘work’ ” Friedrich Nietzsche, A Nietzsche Reader (London: Penguin UK, 2003), p. 213. the term follow your passion Google Ngram Viewer, Google Books, accessed February 3, 2018, https://books.google.com/ngrams/graph?content=follow+your+passion&year_start=1980&year_end=2018&corpus=0&smoothing=3&share=&direct_url=t1%3B%2Cfollow%20your%20passion%3B%2Cc0. Jobs’s speech available at news.stanford.edu/2005/06/14/jobs-061505. “You’ve got to find what you love” “ ‘You’ve Got to Find What You Love,’ Jobs Says,” Stanford News, June 14, 2005, https://news.stanford.edu/2005/06/14/jobs-061505.
Thus a society in which there is continual hard work will have more security: and security is now worshipped as the supreme divinity. As Nietzsche implied and Csikszentmihalyi acknowledged, most of us are dissatisfied with our jobs, a matter made all the more complicated—and guilt provoking—by the modern expectation that we feel passionate about them. A search of Google Books’ Ngram Viewer finds that the term follow your passion appeared nearly 450 times more frequently in 2008 than it did in 1980, when it was barely used at all. Think back to that scene in Girls where the heroine—a college graduate—gets turned down for a job frosting cupcakes because, well, she doesn’t express enough passion for frosting cupcakes.
After all, Jobs’s first passion was Zen Buddhism, but he didn’t make a career of it. Does that mean he “settled” for a life in IT? Is Jobs really advising us to pursue our passions in the face of insolvency? Or should we discipline ourselves to be—or pretend to be—passionate about a paying job that holds no relation to our true passions? The admonishment to “follow your passion” seems at once comforting and daring, as though we can succeed in the conventional sense while at the same time throwing convention to the winds. While on its face extremely appealing, such advice relies on the slippery assumption that each of us is endowed with a passion that can—with hard work, discipline, and determination—be channeled into a remunerative career.
The Start-Up of You: Adapt to the Future, Invest in Yourself, and Transform Your Career by Reid Hoffman, Ben Casnocha
Airbnb, Andy Kessler, Black Swan, business intelligence, Cal Newport, Clayton Christensen, commoditize, David Brooks, Donald Trump, en.wikipedia.org, fear of failure, follow your passion, future of work, game design, independent contractor, Jeff Bezos, job automation, Joi Ito, late fees, lateral thinking, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, Menlo Park, out of africa, Paul Graham, paypal mafia, Peter Thiel, recommendation engine, Richard Bolles, risk tolerance, rolodex, shareholder value, side project, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, social web, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, the strength of weak ties, Tony Hsieh, transaction costs
Just because you’re good at something (assets) that you’re really passionate about (aspirations) doesn’t necessarily mean someone will pay you to do it (market realities). After all, what if someone else can do the same thing for lower pay or do it more reliably? Or what if there’s no demand for the skill to begin with? Not much of a competitive advantage. Following your passions also doesn’t automatically lead to career flourishing. What if you’re passionate but not competent, relative to others? Finally, being a slave to market realities isn’t sustainable. A shortage of nurses in hospitals—meaning there’s demand for credentialed nurses—doesn’t mean you should get on the nursing track.
Habit number two of Stephen Covey’s Seven Habits of Highly Effective People is, “Begin with the end in mind”: you should produce a personal mission statement that puts your goals in focus. In The Purpose-Driven Life, Rick Warren advances the idea that each of us has a God-given purpose for being on this planet. The primary message of these books (of which there are more than 50 million copies in circulation) and countless others is to listen to your heart and follow your passion. Find your true north by filling out worksheets or engaging in deep, thoughtful introspection. Once you’ve got a mission in mind, these books urge, you’re supposed to develop a long-term plan for fulfilling it. You’re supposed to craft detailed, specific goals. You’re urged to figure out who you are and where you want to be in ten years, and then work backward to develop a roadmap for getting there.
Inspire Your Home by Farah Merhi
I knew I wanted to help others with the home design process. Seven years later here I am, still pinching myself that this is real. This book is obviously about helping you love and enjoy your home, but it’s also about sharing what I’ve learned on my journey. My goal is to help inspire and encourage you to follow your passion and dreams no matter how scary it may seem. The unknown can be terrifying, but I encourage you to dig deep and build the courage to take that first step. Walk away from the fear bubble and toward what could be your own success story. If you’re to take anything away from this book, it’s that living our best lives starts in our home.
The Education of Millionaires: It's Not What You Think and It's Not Too Late by Michael Ellsberg
affirmative action, Black Swan, Burning Man, corporate governance, creative destruction, financial independence, follow your passion, future of work, hiring and firing, independent contractor, job automation, knowledge worker, lateral thinking, Lean Startup, Mark Zuckerberg, means of production, mega-rich, meta-analysis, new economy, Norman Mailer, Peter Thiel, profit motive, race to the bottom, Sand Hill Road, shareholder value, side project, Silicon Valley, Skype, social intelligence, Steve Ballmer, survivorship bias, telemarketer, Tony Hsieh
If you’re not particularly passionate about accounting, corporate management, law, or engineering (the traditional professions), and you go into those fields to please your parents, or to placate your own fears about the risks of following your creative passions, it seems very unlikely to me that you’ll end up happy with your career choice. You will always be plagued by a nagging sense of “What if?” Sure, there are a lot of risks of following your passions—the risk that you’ll have to move back into your parents’ basement as an adult, for example, or face near death as a “starving artist.” But, as Randy Komisar points out in his book The Monk and the Riddle, there are also a lot of unacknowledged risks to not following your passions, of sticking too close to the beaten path in the name of safety and predictability. These include: “[T]he risk of working with people you don’t respect; the risk of working for a company whose values are inconsistent with your own; the risk of compromising what’s important; the risk of doing something that fails to express—or even contradicts—who you are.
Creative Intelligence: Harnessing the Power to Create, Connect, and Inspire by Bruce Nussbaum
3D printing, Airbnb, Albert Einstein, Berlin Wall, Black Swan, Chuck Templeton: OpenTable:, clean water, collapse of Lehman Brothers, creative destruction, Credit Default Swap, crony capitalism, crowdsourcing, Danny Hillis, declining real wages, demographic dividend, disruptive innovation, Elon Musk, en.wikipedia.org, Eugene Fama: efficient market hypothesis, Fall of the Berlin Wall, follow your passion, game design, housing crisis, Hyman Minsky, industrial robot, invisible hand, James Dyson, Jane Jacobs, Jeff Bezos, jimmy wales, John Gruber, John Markoff, Joseph Schumpeter, Kickstarter, lone genius, longitudinal study, manufacturing employment, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, Martin Wolf, new economy, Paul Graham, Peter Thiel, QR code, race to the bottom, reshoring, Richard Florida, Ronald Reagan, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley ideology, Silicon Valley startup, six sigma, Skype, Steve Ballmer, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, supply-chain management, Tesla Model S, The Chicago School, The Design of Experiments, the High Line, The Myth of the Rational Market, thinkpad, Tim Cook: Apple, too big to fail, tulip mania, We are the 99%, Y Combinator, young professional, Zipcar
It’s that secret hobby or that thing you used to be really good at, or that new approach at work that you feel would be so much better than what everyone is doing now. It’s that idea that you have about a product that your friends would really love to try if they could. Much has been written about the importance of following your passion, but anyone who’s juggling life’s many demands—moving up the career ladder, raising children, making ends meet in a tough economy—might wonder how to find the time. But a quick glance on Kickstarter will tell you that following your passion to create something can be a very smart investment. Moreover, that thing that electrifies you, that you can’t stop talking or thinking about, is what can draw an audience to you.
And Never Stop Dancing: Thirty More True Things You Need to Know Now by Gordon Livingston
How much better received we would be if we simply told our stories and left the moral for our listeners to divine. In writers’ workshops the operative instruction is “show, don’t tell.” This implies that we learn best about values by seeing how other people have expressed what they believed in by their actions and not by being told to “follow your passion,” or “do unto others . . . ,” or “live an honest life.” Most of us know what we should do; we just need models of how those who have gone before us have reified their beliefs. It’s not surprising that when we contemplate our mortality we tend to feel a little desperate about being remembered.
Financial Freedom: A Proven Path to All the Money You Will Ever Need by Grant Sabatier
"side hustle", 8-hour work day, Airbnb, anti-work, asset allocation, bitcoin, buy and hold, cryptocurrency, diversified portfolio, Donald Trump, financial independence, fixed income, follow your passion, full employment, Home mortgage interest deduction, index fund, loss aversion, Lyft, money market fund, mortgage debt, mortgage tax deduction, passive income, remote working, ride hailing / ride sharing, risk tolerance, Skype, stocks for the long run, stocks for the long term, TaskRabbit, the rule of 72, time value of money, uber lyft, Vanguard fund
Once you reach the point where you no longer have to trade your time for money, you can choose to spend that time however you please. When you have enough (or even just close to enough!), you can quit the higher-paying job you hate to take a lower-paying one that is meaningful to you. You can explore, grow, give back, follow your passions, and find new passions. You can travel the world, pick up a new hobby, learn a new skill, volunteer—the possibilities are infinite. Anita retired at thirty-three so she could sleep in every day and travel the world without having to negotiate vacation days with her boss or worry about missing an important email.
These types of businesses are great for early retirement because you can build a passive income business that generates enough or more than enough money to cover your monthly expenses—potentially giving you the ability to “retire” sooner or at least take a mini retirement of a few months or years to follow your passions. Remember that any amount of consistent stable recurring monthly income will reduce your number and could even cover your entire monthly expenses. When evaluating passive income opportunities, focus on those things that people will always need, not just a fad. For example, people will always need to eat, sleep, get their dogs walked, find babysitters, get their lawns mowed, and travel from point A to point B.
Vagabonding: An Uncommon Guide to the Art of Long-Term World Travel by Rolf Potts
Ultimately, you may well discover that vagabonding on the cheap becomes your favorite way to travel, even if given more expensive options. Indeed, not only does simplicity save you money and buy you time; it also makes you more adventuresome, forces you into sincere contact with locals, and allows you the independence to follow your passions and curiosities down exciting new roads. In this way, simplicity — both at home and on the road — affords you the time to seek renewed meaning in an oft-neglected commodity that can’t be bought at any price: life itself. Tip Sheet RESOURCES FOR LIFESTYLE SIMPLICITY Your Money or Your Life: Transforming Your Relationship with Money and Achieving Financial Independence, by Joe Dominguez and Vicki Robin (Penguin USA, 1999) This bestselling book uses a nine-step process to demonstrate how most people are making a “dying” instead of a living.
Women Leaders at Work: Untold Tales of Women Achieving Their Ambitions by Elizabeth Ghaffari
Albert Einstein, AltaVista, Bear Stearns, business cycle, business process, cloud computing, Columbine, compensation consultant, corporate governance, corporate social responsibility, dark matter, family office, Fellow of the Royal Society, financial independence, follow your passion, glass ceiling, Grace Hopper, high net worth, knowledge worker, Long Term Capital Management, longitudinal study, performance metric, pink-collar, profit maximization, profit motive, recommendation engine, Ronald Reagan, Savings and loan crisis, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, Steve Ballmer, Steve Jobs, thinkpad, trickle-down economics, urban planning, women in the workforce, young professional
It wasn’t things that were said or done so much as awkwardness. There was never any intent to be deliberately cruel. There is much less of that awkwardness today. And there is a greater awareness today of things that are appropriate to say or not say. Ghaffari: What key advice would you give to other women? Ford: Follow your passion. If you enjoy doing something, follow that passion. Remove all the obstacles and never give up. Persistence really does pay off. Every year there are a whole new set of challenges. If you’re still pursuing those cool and interesting projects that you have a passion around, you have to just remove the obstacles that get in the way.
It’s that my husband and I had this wonderful kid, and together we have this amazing family that’s absolutely important to both of us. The other side is the women and men that I have trained in my laboratory—my scientific children. That’s the flip side. Ghaffari: Is there anything you would say to advise young women about their interest in science or math? Barton: Do what you love. Follow your passion. And, if you love doing science, you can do it. There’s no reason why you can’t. So, do what you love, because whatever you love doing, you’ll be good at it. Amy Millman President, Springboard Enterprises Born June 1954 in Brooklyn, New York. For more than a decade, Amy Millman has been president and principal advocate of Springboard Enterprises—the premier venture-catalyst platform for building women-led businesses.
The Little Book of Hedge Funds by Anthony Scaramucci
Andrei Shleifer, asset allocation, Bear Stearns, Bernie Madoff, business process, carried interest, corporate raider, Credit Default Swap, diversification, diversified portfolio, Donald Trump, Eugene Fama: efficient market hypothesis, fear of failure, fixed income, follow your passion, Gordon Gekko, high net worth, index fund, John Meriwether, Long Term Capital Management, mail merge, margin call, mass immigration, merger arbitrage, money market fund, Myron Scholes, NetJets, Ponzi scheme, profit motive, quantitative trading / quantitative ﬁnance, random walk, Renaissance Technologies, risk-adjusted returns, risk/return, Ronald Reagan, Saturday Night Live, Sharpe ratio, short selling, Silicon Valley, tail risk, Thales and the olive presses, Thales of Miletus, the new new thing, too big to fail, transaction costs, two and twenty, Vanguard fund, Y2K, Yogi Berra, zero-sum game
If you are looking to chase money, fortune, or fame and don’t think you have the stomach for managing money or being a part of an asset management organization, then hopefully you will go back to your art or poetry class when you are done reading this chapter. As I tell any young person I advise or mentor: follow your passions and do want you really want to do. Don’t chase what you think you should do; it will only delay your journey to job and life fulfillment. Wall Street’s Mass Migration Growing up, it was fairly simple. Whenever I was asked what I wanted to be when I grew up, my answer was always the same: I wanted a job that would give me and my family financial security.
The More of Less: Finding the Life You Want Under Everything You Own by Joshua Becker
You may have a large family, a small family, or no family. You may live on a farm, in a house, or in a studio apartment. You love music, movies, sports, or books. You practice art, or maybe you don’t. Maybe you believe you were put on this earth to host beautiful dinner parties or offer your home as a place of respite and retreat for others. Follow your passions to the best of your ability with the resources you possess. Fulfill your purpose with great focus by removing the distractions keeping you from it. And find a style of minimalism that works for you, one that is not cumbersome but freeing. Be aware that your individual definition of minimalism will not emerge overnight.
The Wisdom of Finance: Discovering Humanity in the World of Risk and Return by Mihir Desai
activist fund / activist shareholder / activist investor, Albert Einstein, Andrei Shleifer, assortative mating, Benoit Mandelbrot, Brownian motion, capital asset pricing model, carried interest, Charles Lindbergh, collective bargaining, corporate governance, corporate raider, discounted cash flows, diversified portfolio, Eugene Fama: efficient market hypothesis, financial innovation, follow your passion, George Akerlof, Gordon Gekko, greed is good, housing crisis, income inequality, information asymmetry, Isaac Newton, Jony Ive, Kenneth Rogoff, longitudinal study, Louis Bachelier, Monty Hall problem, moral hazard, Myron Scholes, new economy, out of africa, Paul Samuelson, Pierre-Simon Laplace, principal–agent problem, Ralph Waldo Emerson, random walk, risk/return, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Ronald Coase, Silicon Valley, Steve Jobs, Thales and the olive presses, Thales of Miletus, The Market for Lemons, The Nature of the Firm, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Tim Cook: Apple, transaction costs, zero-sum game
“Shareholder Perceptions of the Changing Impact of CEOs: Market Reactions to Unexpected CEO Deaths, 1950–2009.” Strategic Management Journal, March 2016. In exploring the parallels of the principal-agent framework to our lives, I employ Luna, Elle. The Crossroads of Should and Must: Find and Follow Your Passion. New York: Workman Publishing, 2015; Miller, Alice. The Drama of the Gifted Child. New York: Basic Books, 1996; Joyce, James. Ulysses. Paris: Sylvia Beach, 1922; Grosz, Stephen. The Examined Life: How We Lose and Find Ourselves. New York: W. W. Norton & Company, 2013; and Forster, E. M. A Room with a View.
Think Like an Engineer: Use Systematic Thinking to Solve Everyday Challenges & Unlock the Inherent Values in Them by Mushtak Al-Atabi
3D printing, agricultural Revolution, Albert Einstein, Barry Marshall: ulcers, Black Swan, business climate, call centre, Clayton Christensen, clean water, cognitive bias, corporate social responsibility, dematerialisation, disruptive innovation, Elon Musk, follow your passion, global supply chain, happiness index / gross national happiness, invention of the wheel, iterative process, James Dyson, Kickstarter, knowledge economy, Lao Tzu, Lean Startup, On the Revolutions of the Heavenly Spheres, remote working, shareholder value, six sigma, Steve Jobs, Steven Pinker
Highly recommended to anyone who aspires to live a meaningful and productive life.” Arnold Teo, Shell (Malaysia) “There are many books that talk about success and how to achieve it. What Prof. Mushtak has brought forward in this book is a unique view of how engineers think and what makes engineers successful. In summary, it was never more than following your passion relentlessly. I've always been a great fan of Prof. Mushtak and I'm absolutely pleased that he has taken this mammoth effort of documenting his lifelong journey of discovering what makes engineers tick.” Harvinder Singh, Chairman and Group Managing Director, PSI inCONTROL Sdn. Bhd. “Engineers are known as problem-solvers.
You Are Not a Gadget by Jaron Lanier
1960s counterculture, accounting loophole / creative accounting, additive manufacturing, Albert Einstein, Bear Stearns, call centre, cloud computing, commoditize, crowdsourcing, death of newspapers, different worldview, digital Maoism, Douglas Hofstadter, Extropian, follow your passion, hive mind, Internet Archive, Jaron Lanier, jimmy wales, John Conway, John von Neumann, Kevin Kelly, Long Term Capital Management, Network effects, new economy, packet switching, PageRank, pattern recognition, Ponzi scheme, Ray Kurzweil, Richard Stallman, Savings and loan crisis, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, slashdot, social graph, stem cell, Steve Jobs, Stewart Brand, Ted Nelson, telemarketer, telepresence, The Wisdom of Crowds, trickle-down economics, Turing test, Vernor Vinge, Whole Earth Catalog
Doesn’t it really become about you instead of the cause at that point? Do you go around blowing up other people’s toothbrushes? Do you think the bacteria you saved are morally equivalent to former slaves—and if you do, haven’t you diminished the status of those human beings? Even if you can follow your passion to free and protect the world’s bacteria with a pure heart, haven’t you divorced yourself from the reality of interdependence and transience of all things? You can try to avoid killing bacteria on special occasions, but you need to kill them to live. And even if you are willing to die for your cause, you can’t prevent bacteria from devouring your own body when you die.
The Big Shift: Navigating the New Stage Beyond Midlife by Marc Freedman
airport security, Berlin Wall, David Brooks, follow your passion, illegal immigration, Isaac Newton, longitudinal study, McMansion, RAND corporation, Silicon Valley, Steve Jobs, transcontinental railway, working poor, working-age population
Senescence: The Last Half of Life. New York: D. Appleton, 1922. Hall, Stephen S. Wisdom: From Philosophy to Neuroscience. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 2010. Handy, Charles. The Age of Unreason. Boston: Harvard Business School Press, 1989. ———. The Hungry Spirit. New York: Broadway Books, 1998. Hannon, Kerry. What’s Next? Follow Your Passion and Find Your Dream Job. San Francisco: Chronicle Books, 2010. Hareven, Tamara K. “The Last Stage: Historical Adulthood and Old Age.” Daedalus 105, no. 4 (1976): 13–27. “The HBR List: Breakthrough Ideas for 2005.” Harvard Business Review, February 2005. Hine, Thomas. The Rise and Fall of the American Teenager.
The Emotionally Absent Mother: A Guide to Self-Healing and Getting the Love You Missed by Jasmin Lee Cori Ms, Lpc
In an interesting twist, this is often paired with being an underachiever rather than an overachiever. People who need to do everything well don’t have permission to fail or to try new things that require a learning curve, and so they stop themselves before they begin. Difficulty finding your authentic voice and following your passion Without a champion or a cheerleader, without mirroring, without unconditional acceptance, it’s much harder to find your authentic self-expression. Neglect can be a setup for a lost self and lost life. What helps While you can never go back to being a baby and get the holding you missed, there is much that you can do to make up for insufficient mothering.
Die With Zero: Getting All You Can From Your Money and Your Life by Bill Perkins
delayed gratification, Downton Abbey, financial independence, follow your passion, Google Earth, Gordon Gekko, Kickstarter, lateral thinking, Own Your Own Home, passive income, rent control, Richard Thaler, risk tolerance, Stanford marshmallow experiment, time value of money, Walter Mischel
Would you do that only because you weren’t counting on that extra life? Why take that easy-come, easy-go attitude? It’s the same with any money you receive. “Maximizing your life” doesn’t care where the money came from. Whether you earn it from a job you love or you inherit it from your great-granddad, whether the money is a by-product of following your passion or of being a member of the lucky-sperm club, once it’s given to you it becomes yours. And once it’s yours, it now represents hours of your life, which you can exchange for whatever will help you live the best life you can. If dance is your life, and you happen to also earn money from dancing, go ahead and spend it on dance-related experiences: Splurge on private lessons with the best dance teachers if that’s what you value, or hire someone to clean your place so you have more time to pursue dance.
Deep Work: Rules for Focused Success in a Distracted World by Cal Newport
8-hour work day, Albert Einstein, barriers to entry, Bluma Zeigarnik, business climate, Cal Newport, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, Clayton Christensen, David Brooks, David Heinemeier Hansson, deliberate practice, disruptive innovation, Donald Knuth, Donald Trump, Downton Abbey, en.wikipedia.org, Erik Brynjolfsson, experimental subject, follow your passion, Frank Gehry, informal economy, information retrieval, Internet Archive, Jaron Lanier, knowledge worker, Mark Zuckerberg, Marshall McLuhan, Merlin Mann, Nate Silver, new economy, Nicholas Carr, popular electronics, remote working, Richard Feynman, Ruby on Rails, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, Snapchat, statistical model, the medium is the message, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, web application, winner-take-all economy, zero-sum game
It’s here that some might respond that their knowledge work job cannot possibly become such a source of meaning because their job’s subject is much too mundane. But this is flawed thinking that our consideration of traditional craftsmanship can help correct. In our current culture, we place a lot of emphasis on job description. Our obsession with the advice to “follow your passion” (the subject of my last book), for example, is motivated by the (flawed) idea that what matters most for your career satisfaction is the specifics of the job you choose. In this way of thinking, there are some rarified jobs that can be a source of satisfaction—perhaps working in a nonprofit or starting a software company—while all others are soulless and bland.
Rigged Money: Beating Wall Street at Its Own Game by Lee Munson
affirmative action, asset allocation, backtesting, barriers to entry, Bear Stearns, Bernie Madoff, Bretton Woods, business cycle, buy and hold, buy low sell high, California gold rush, call centre, Credit Default Swap, diversification, diversified portfolio, estate planning, fiat currency, financial innovation, fixed income, Flash crash, follow your passion, German hyperinflation, High speed trading, housing crisis, index fund, joint-stock company, money market fund, moral hazard, Myron Scholes, passive investing, Ponzi scheme, price discovery process, random walk, risk tolerance, risk-adjusted returns, risk/return, Savings and loan crisis, stocks for the long run, stocks for the long term, too big to fail, trade route, Vanguard fund, walking around money
I began studying, first for the Certified Financial Planning designation and then to earn a Chartered Financial Analyst charter. I bought my first home and had my first child, a daughter. Will I ever be able to explain my lapse in judgment to her? I want to teach my daughter that even if certain people in society disagree with you or what you do—follow your passion. You respect the fact that some people are ignorant and will never approve. In essence, I want to tell her: don’t apologize and don’t back down. Now that I’m older, I like what Business Insider did without contacting me in publishing a 10-year flashback of the ordeal. That was the defining moment because it reminded me of something.
Finding Your Element: How to Discover Your Talents and Passions and Transform Your Life by Ken Robinson, Lou Aronica
You should be inspired by those who are further down the road than you are, not discouraged by how far you have to go. If you love what you do, you should enjoy the journey of improvement and not be frustrated by having to make it. WHAT IF WHAT I LOVE IS MORALLY DUBIOUS? I am sometimes asked if it’s all right to follow your passion if it’s for something unsavory or harmful, like arson or cruelty. I’m sure you can think of your own examples. No, it’s not. Let me qualify that answer. All my arguments for the Element have to be framed within an acceptable moral code. Moral standards can vary enormously between cultures and over time.
A Little History of Economics by Niall Kishtainy
"Robert Solow", Alvin Roth, British Empire, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, car-free, central bank independence, clean water, Corn Laws, creative destruction, credit crunch, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, Eugene Fama: efficient market hypothesis, first-price auction, floating exchange rates, follow your passion, full employment, George Akerlof, greed is good, Hyman Minsky, inflation targeting, invisible hand, John Nash: game theory, John von Neumann, Joseph Schumpeter, Kenneth Arrow, loss aversion, market clearing, market design, means of production, moral hazard, Nash equilibrium, new economy, Occupy movement, Pareto efficiency, Paul Samuelson, prisoner's dilemma, RAND corporation, rent-seeking, Richard Thaler, rising living standards, road to serfdom, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Ronald Reagan, sealed-bid auction, second-price auction, The Chicago School, The Great Moderation, The Market for Lemons, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas Malthus, Thorstein Veblen, trade route, Vickrey auction, Vilfredo Pareto, washing machines reduced drudgery, wealth creators, Winter of Discontent
And in commercial society, the rich and powerful do everything they can to protect their position and end up trampling on the poor. Fourier proposed a new society. He called it a system of harmony. He imagined people living in small communities called ‘phalansteries’. The phalanstery would be a rectangular building containing workshops, libraries, even an opera house. It would be a place where you’d be able to follow your passions to the full. Fourier talked about familiar passions like friendship, ambition and the love of food and music. There was also the passion of the ‘butterfly’, the love of flitting between lots of different activities, and even that of the ‘cabalist’, a fondness for plots and intrigue. The passions could combine to create 810 human character types, said Fourier.
This Chair Rocks: A Manifiesto Against Ageism by Ashton Applewhite
affirmative action, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Airbnb, Albert Einstein, Atul Gawande, Buckminster Fuller, clean water, cognitive dissonance, crowdsourcing, desegregation, Downton Abbey, fixed income, follow your passion, ghettoisation, Google Hangouts, hiring and firing, income inequality, informal economy, Internet of things, invention of the printing press, job satisfaction, labor-force participation, life extension, longitudinal study, Mark Zuckerberg, Naomi Klein, obamacare, old age dependency ratio, RAND corporation, Ronald Reagan, Rosa Parks, sensible shoes, Silicon Valley, Skype, smart cities, Snapchat, stem cell, the built environment, urban decay, urban planning, white picket fence, women in the workforce
I don’t love the “still” in the title of Deirdre Fishel’s book and documentary, Still Doing It: The Intimate Lives of Women over Sixty, but I do love her call to arms: “Women over sixty are still doing it—it being whatever turns them on, from doing humanitarian work to buying a dildo, from climbing Machu Picchu to having the best orgasms of their lives. Sex is so much more than an act —it’s a metaphor for being alive … Women of all ages, stand up! Follow your passions! Fall in love! Get laid!”21 That does not mean that women “should” stay sexually active, or feel deficient if they abstain. There’s no such thing as “normal”—at any age—and no single standard to which we should hold ourselves, especially as we grow more confident in our self-knowledge and diverse in our desires.
Crushing It! EPB by Gary Vaynerchuk
"side hustle", augmented reality, fear of failure, follow your passion, Mark Zuckerberg, passive income, ride hailing / ride sharing, rolodex, Rubik’s Cube, Saturday Night Live, Silicon Valley, Skype, Snapchat
Andy Frisella, founder of nutrition and fitness brands Supplement Superstores and 1st Phorm, explained it best: You’re going to go through a time where you’re not going to make any money. It’s not going to be a week, it’s not going to be a month, it’s not going to be one year. It’s going to be years. And during that time, if you don’t love what you do, it’s going to be very hard to stick it out. That is something that people don’t understand when they hear, “Follow your passion.” They hear rainbows, unicorns, bullshit. But the truth of it is that it’s important, because if you don’t enjoy what you’re doing, you’re going to be that much more likely to quit when shit’s hard. When you’re passionate about what you’re offering the world, whether it’s a sales training method or vintage toys, the quality of both your product and your content will more likely be what it needs to be to get noticed, valued, and talked about.
Late Bloomers: The Power of Patience in a World Obsessed With Early Achievement by Rich Karlgaard
Airbnb, Albert Einstein, Amazon Web Services, Apple's 1984 Super Bowl advert, Bernie Madoff, Bob Noyce, Brownian motion, Captain Sullenberger Hudson, cloud computing, cognitive dissonance, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, deliberate practice, Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test, Elon Musk, en.wikipedia.org, experimental economics, fear of failure, financial independence, follow your passion, Frederick Winslow Taylor, hiring and firing, Internet of things, Isaac Newton, Jeff Bezos, job satisfaction, knowledge economy, labor-force participation, longitudinal study, low skilled workers, Mark Zuckerberg, meta-analysis, Moneyball by Michael Lewis explains big data, move fast and break things, move fast and break things, pattern recognition, Peter Thiel, Sand Hill Road, science of happiness, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, Snapchat, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, sunk-cost fallacy, theory of mind, Tim Cook: Apple, Toyota Production System, unpaid internship, upwardly mobile, women in the workforce, working poor
Christine Hassler’s 20 Something Manifesto is an anthology that explores the experiences of young adults, including what she calls the Expectation Hangover. “It’s somewhat terrifying,” said a twenty-five-year-old named Jennifer, “to think about all the things I’m supposed to be doing in order to ‘get somewhere’ successful: ‘Follow your passions, live your dreams, take risks, network with the right people, find mentors, be financially responsible, volunteer, work, think about or go to grad school, fall in love and maintain personal well-being, mental health and nutrition.’ When is there time to just be and enjoy?” A twenty-four-year-old from Virginia lamented, “There is pressure to make decisions that will form the foundation for the rest of your life in your 20s.
Masterminds of Programming: Conversations With the Creators of Major Programming Languages by Federico Biancuzzi, Shane Warden
Benevolent Dictator For Life (BDFL), business intelligence, business process, cellular automata, cloud computing, commoditize, complexity theory, conceptual framework, continuous integration, data acquisition, domain-specific language, Douglas Hofstadter, Fellow of the Royal Society, finite state, Firefox, follow your passion, Frank Gehry, functional programming, general-purpose programming language, Guido van Rossum, HyperCard, information retrieval, iterative process, John von Neumann, Larry Wall, linear programming, loose coupling, Mars Rover, millennium bug, NP-complete, Paul Graham, performance metric, Perl 6, QWERTY keyboard, RAND corporation, randomized controlled trial, Renaissance Technologies, Ruby on Rails, Sapir-Whorf hypothesis, Silicon Valley, slashdot, software as a service, software patent, sorting algorithm, Steve Jobs, traveling salesman, Turing complete, type inference, Valgrind, Von Neumann architecture, web application
I gave some lectures at Cal-Poly and USC a few weeks ago. I’ve had some followups from some of those students, so I’ll offer the same answer that I offered for them back then. The first is follow your passion and be sure you have fun. There is certainly value in pursuing a career and pursing a livelihood but in the end development and all the things we do, it’s a human experience and you want to be a whole person in this process. So enjoy, live fully, gain life experiences; please do that. Follow your passion because it’s easy to find really crappy jobs out there where you can find yourself in a place you just hate. Please don’t do that. That’s what I encourage.
Only Humans Need Apply: Winners and Losers in the Age of Smart Machines by Thomas H. Davenport, Julia Kirby
AI winter, Andy Kessler, artificial general intelligence, asset allocation, Automated Insights, autonomous vehicles, basic income, Baxter: Rethink Robotics, business intelligence, business process, call centre, carbon-based life, Clayton Christensen, clockwork universe, commoditize, conceptual framework, dark matter, David Brooks, deliberate practice, deskilling, digital map, disruptive innovation, Douglas Engelbart, Edward Lloyd's coffeehouse, Elon Musk, Erik Brynjolfsson, estate planning, fixed income, follow your passion, Frank Levy and Richard Murnane: The New Division of Labor, Freestyle chess, game design, general-purpose programming language, global pandemic, Google Glasses, Hans Lippershey, haute cuisine, income inequality, independent contractor, index fund, industrial robot, information retrieval, intermodal, Internet of things, inventory management, Isaac Newton, job automation, John Markoff, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, Joi Ito, Khan Academy, knowledge worker, labor-force participation, lifelogging, longitudinal study, loss aversion, Mark Zuckerberg, Narrative Science, natural language processing, Norbert Wiener, nuclear winter, pattern recognition, performance metric, Peter Thiel, precariat, quantitative trading / quantitative ﬁnance, Ray Kurzweil, Richard Feynman, risk tolerance, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, robotic process automation, Rodney Brooks, Second Machine Age, self-driving car, Silicon Valley, six sigma, Skype, social intelligence, speech recognition, spinning jenny, statistical model, Stephen Hawking, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, strong AI, superintelligent machines, supply-chain management, transaction costs, Tyler Cowen: Great Stagnation, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, Works Progress Administration, Zipcar
Staci Jennifer Riordan, of Fox Rothschild, spent years working in the fashion business and now specializes in fashion law. M. Dru Levasseur, whose own female-to-male transition opened his eyes to discrimination based on gender identity, is today’s best-known practitioner of transgender law. Thus, finding a narrow specialization is largely a matter of following your passion, which has always been an important factor in career choice. But some passions are more likely to succeed than others, so some rational analysis about your narrow field of choice is also a good idea. What you need to examine is whether, in that famous cliché from Wayne Gretzky, you are skating where the puck is going to be.
Reset: How to Restart Your Life and Get F.U. Money: The Unconventional Early Retirement Plan for Midlife Careerists Who Want to Be Happy by David Sawyer
Airbnb, Albert Einstein, asset allocation, beat the dealer, bitcoin, Cal Newport, cloud computing, cognitive dissonance, crowdsourcing, cryptocurrency, David Attenborough, David Heinemeier Hansson, Desert Island Discs, diversification, diversified portfolio, Edward Thorp, Elon Musk, financial independence, follow your passion, gig economy, hiring and firing, index card, index fund, invention of the wheel, knowledge worker, loadsamoney, low skilled workers, Mahatma Gandhi, Mark Zuckerberg, meta-analysis, mortgage debt, passive income, passive investing, Paul Samuelson, pension reform, risk tolerance, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, Skype, smart meter, Snapchat, stakhanovite, Steve Jobs, sunk-cost fallacy, Tim Cook: Apple, Vanguard fund, Y Combinator
Inspiration comes from everywhere, especially from people you know. A few Christmases ago, a friend who never writes on Facebook revealed in a casual post that she’d read 89 books over the past year. Her enthusiasm inspired me to act: making reading part of my daily routine has transformed my life. Follow your passion; go off at obsessional tangents. Just do it. Harness that enthusiasm now, while you have the bit between your teeth, or you may live to regret it. Brutus expresses it best in Act IV, Scene III of Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar: “There is a tide in the affairs of men, which, taken at the flood, leads on to fortune; omitted, all the voyage of their life is bound in shallows and in miseries.
The 4-Hour Workweek: Escape 9-5, Live Anywhere, and Join the New Rich by Timothy Ferriss
Albert Einstein, Amazon Mechanical Turk, call centre, clean water, Donald Trump, en.wikipedia.org, Firefox, fixed income, follow your passion, game design, global village, Iridium satellite, knowledge worker, late fees, lateral thinking, Maui Hawaii, oil shock, paper trading, Parkinson's law, passive income, peer-to-peer, pre–internet, Ralph Waldo Emerson, remote working, risk tolerance, Ronald Reagan, side project, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, Skype, Steve Jobs, Vilfredo Pareto, wage slave, William of Occam
Crying out of happiness is a perfect illustration of this. The opposite of love is indifference, and the opposite of happiness is—here’s the clincher—boredom. Excitement is the more practical synonym for happiness, and it is precisely what you should strive to chase. It is the cure-all. When people suggest you follow your “passion” or your “bliss,” I propose that they are, in fact, referring to the same singular concept: excitement. This brings us full circle. The question you should be asking isn’t, “What do I want?” or “What are my goals?” but “What would excite me?” Adult-Onset ADD: Adventure Deficit Disorder Somewhere between college graduation and your second job, a chorus enters your internal dialogue: Be realistic and stop pretending.
The Road to Character by David Brooks
Cass Sunstein, coherent worldview, David Brooks, desegregation, Donald Trump, follow your passion, George Santayana, Mahatma Gandhi, meta-analysis, moral hazard, New Journalism, Ralph Waldo Emerson, rent control, Snapchat, Steve Jobs, Triangle Shirtwaist Factory, union organizing, Upton Sinclair, upwardly mobile, you are the product
(Though, to be fair, I’m pretty sure the president of Harvard would also rather be Justin Bieber’s personal assistant.) As I looked around the popular culture I kept finding the same messages everywhere: You are special. Trust yourself. Be true to yourself. Movies from Pixar and Disney are constantly telling children how wonderful they are. Commencement speeches are larded with the same clichés: Follow your passion. Don’t accept limits. Chart your own course. You have a responsibility to do great things because you are so great. This is the gospel of self-trust. As Ellen DeGeneres put it in a 2009 commencement address, “My advice to you is to be true to yourself and everything will be fine.” Celebrity chef Mario Batali advised graduates to follow “your own truth, expressed consistently by you.”
The Global Citizen: A Guide to Creating an International Life and Career by Elizabeth Kruempelmann
Berlin Wall, business climate, corporate governance, different worldview, Fall of the Berlin Wall, follow your passion, global village, job satisfaction, Menlo Park, money market fund, Nelson Mandela, young professional
Thuesen (Dell Publishing, 1993) The sixteen personality types are based on the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) and give an interesting and thorough analysis of how the use of personality typing can be applied to the workplace. U N C O V E R I N G Y O U R G L O B A L PA S S I O N 25 Figure Out What You Love (and Do) Best The best advice that anyone has ever given me (and that I have passed on to others) is simply to “follow your passion.” Do what comes naturally to you, do something that makes you feel fulfilled. At the end of a day’s work you should feel energized; time should have passed by without you even noticing it. Develop and follow a path that allows you to live life the way you want. OK, I know that’s easier said than done—especially if you don’t know yet what your passion is.
Advertisers at Work by Tracy Tuten
I don’t make firm career plans because I worry it will give me tunnel vision. Have you seen Steve Jobs’ speech to the Stanford graduating class? I’m sure it’s online.5 In it, he talks about how new opportunities will present themselves to you. They will be opportunities that you never thought of. These opportunities occur when you follow your passions. They don’t happen because you followed a career ladder or some predictable schedule for career growth—just when you follow a passion and are committed to excellence in your work. You earn the opportunities with your passion, but you can’t take advantage of them unless you are open and smart enough to recognize the opportunities when they come.
The Invisible Hands: Top Hedge Fund Traders on Bubbles, Crashes, and Real Money by Steven Drobny
Albert Einstein, Asian financial crisis, asset allocation, asset-backed security, backtesting, banking crisis, Bear Stearns, Bernie Madoff, Black Swan, bond market vigilante , Bretton Woods, BRICs, British Empire, business cycle, business process, buy and hold, capital asset pricing model, capital controls, central bank independence, collateralized debt obligation, commoditize, Commodity Super-Cycle, commodity trading advisor, credit crunch, Credit Default Swap, credit default swaps / collateralized debt obligations, currency peg, debt deflation, diversification, diversified portfolio, equity premium, family office, fiat currency, fixed income, follow your passion, full employment, George Santayana, Hyman Minsky, implied volatility, index fund, inflation targeting, interest rate swap, inventory management, invisible hand, Kickstarter, London Interbank Offered Rate, Long Term Capital Management, market bubble, market fundamentalism, market microstructure, moral hazard, Myron Scholes, North Sea oil, open economy, peak oil, pension reform, Ponzi scheme, prediction markets, price discovery process, price stability, private sector deleveraging, profit motive, purchasing power parity, quantitative easing, random walk, reserve currency, risk free rate, risk tolerance, risk-adjusted returns, risk/return, savings glut, selection bias, Sharpe ratio, short selling, sovereign wealth fund, special drawing rights, statistical arbitrage, stochastic volatility, stocks for the long run, stocks for the long term, survivorship bias, tail risk, The Great Moderation, Thomas Bayes, time value of money, too big to fail, Tragedy of the Commons, transaction costs, two and twenty, unbiased observer, value at risk, Vanguard fund, yield curve, zero-sum game
Longer-dated nominal bonds will obviously be a total catastrophe in an inflation scenario, so you have to be underweight those if you think the risk of inflation is increasing. But the opposite holds true in a deflationary scenario. This game was never meant to be easy. If you were to follow your passion and go deep sea fishing for the next 10 years, and you had to put all of your wealth into one trade, what would it be? Well, I hope I will never have to bet everything on one card without being able to adjust my views for 10 years. But if I had no choice, I would say residential real estate in the U.S., focusing on cheaper markets with rock-bottom prices such as Florida or California—but not the fancy addresses.
The Search for Life on Mars by Elizabeth Howell
affirmative action, Alfred Russel Wallace, British Empire, dark matter, double helix, financial independence, follow your passion, glass ceiling, Google Earth, independent contractor, invention of the telescope, John von Neumann, Louis Pasteur, Mars Rover, Menlo Park, New Journalism, Pluto: dwarf planet, Ronald Reagan, Skype
Seven months later, Christina Koch and Jessica Meir participated in the first all-female spacewalk in October 2019. Slowly but surely, many of the barriers that Donna Shirley had to face are being removed. In talks, her advice to young girls is simple: “Just do what your heart tells you to do,” she says. “One of the things that I teach in my course is to follow your passion.” Despite the hurdles, she is pleased that the situation has changed for girls who might become the engineers of the future. “What I have ended up being is a role model to everybody else,” she says, even though she did not have similar role models herself. Perhaps today a young girl who wants to fly will be able to explore Mars directly for herself.
Principles: Life and Work by Ray Dalio
Albert Einstein, asset allocation, autonomous vehicles, backtesting, Bear Stearns, cognitive bias, Deng Xiaoping, diversification, Elon Musk, follow your passion, hiring and firing, iterative process, Jeff Bezos, Long Term Capital Management, margin call, microcredit, oil shock, performance metric, planetary scale, quantitative easing, risk tolerance, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, Steve Jobs, transaction costs, yield curve
Work is either 1) a job you do to earn the money to pay for the life you want to have or 2) what you do to achieve your mission, or some mix of the two. I urge you to make it as much 2) as possible, recognizing the value of 1). If you do that, most everything will go better than if you don’t. Work Principles is written for those for whom work is primarily the game that you play to follow your passion and achieve your mission. * * * 36 We applied these ways of operating to the businesses of investing and managing. In the process of investing I developed a practical understanding of what makes businesses and economies succeed, and in the process of managing my company I had to develop a practical understanding of how to manage businesses well.
The Complete Thyroid Book by Kenneth Ain, M. Sara Rosenthal
It was a tough sell to a publisher because I was not an M.D. One small publisher in California was willing to take a chance. They had begun a “sourcebook” series and thought I could write The Thyroid Sourcebook. Even if only a handful of readers beneﬁted, I felt it would be well worth the effort. I learned a valuable lesson early in life: follow your passion and it will take care of you. Today, hundreds of thousands of thyroid patients have beneﬁted from that book, which has been updated ﬁve times and translated into several languages, including Chinese. Between 1993 and 1996 I created seven health sourcebooks while holding down various writing jobs in advertising and journalism.
The Joys of Compounding: The Passionate Pursuit of Lifelong Learning, Revised and Updated by Gautam Baid
activist fund / activist shareholder / activist investor, Airbnb, Albert Einstein, Andrei Shleifer, asset allocation, Atul Gawande, availability heuristic, backtesting, barriers to entry, beat the dealer, Benoit Mandelbrot, Bernie Madoff, bitcoin, Black Swan, business process, buy and hold, Cal Newport, Cass Sunstein, Checklist Manifesto, Clayton Christensen, cognitive dissonance, collapse of Lehman Brothers, commoditize, corporate governance, correlation does not imply causation, creative destruction, cryptocurrency, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, delayed gratification, deliberate practice, discounted cash flows, disintermediation, disruptive innovation, Dissolution of the Soviet Union, diversification, diversified portfolio, dividend-yielding stocks, Edward Thorp, Elon Musk, Everything should be made as simple as possible, financial independence, financial innovation, fixed income, follow your passion, framing effect, George Santayana, Hans Rosling, hedonic treadmill, hindsight bias, Hyman Minsky, index fund, intangible asset, invention of the wheel, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, Jeff Bezos, Joseph Schumpeter, Kickstarter, knowledge economy, Lao Tzu, Long Term Capital Management, loss aversion, Louis Pasteur, Mahatma Gandhi, mandelbrot fractal, margin call, Mark Zuckerberg, mental accounting, Milgram experiment, moral hazard, Nate Silver, Network effects, Nicholas Carr, offshore financial centre, oil shock, passive income, passive investing, pattern recognition, Peter Thiel, Ponzi scheme, price anchoring, quantitative trading / quantitative ﬁnance, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Ray Kurzweil, reserve currency, Richard Feynman, Richard Thaler, risk free rate, risk-adjusted returns, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, salary depends on his not understanding it, Savings and loan crisis, shareholder value, six sigma, software as a service, software is eating the world, South Sea Bubble, special economic zone, Stanford marshmallow experiment, Steve Jobs, Steven Levy, Steven Pinker, stocks for the long run, sunk-cost fallacy, tail risk, the market place, The Signal and the Noise by Nate Silver, The Wisdom of Crowds, time value of money, transaction costs, tulip mania, Upton Sinclair, Walter Mischel, wealth creators, Yogi Berra, zero-sum game
His early passion for money management resulted in his studying, by age eleven, every book the Omaha Public Library had on investing, some of them twice. In an interview with Fortune magazine in 2012, Buffett was asked how other people can “tap dance to work” the way he does. He provided the following answer: “Follow your passion…. I always tell college students to take the job that you would take if you were independently wealthy.”4 By doing that, the logic goes, you’ll bring more energy to your work than anybody else does. There is power in passion. “The truth is, so few people really jump on their jobs, you really will stand out more than you think,” Buffett explains.
The Simple Living Guide by Janet Luhrs
air freight, Albert Einstein, car-free, cognitive dissonance, Community Supported Agriculture, compound rate of return, financial independence, follow your passion, Golden Gate Park, job satisfaction, late fees, money market fund, music of the spheres, passive income, Ralph Waldo Emerson, risk tolerance, telemarketer, the rule of 72, urban decay, urban renewal, Whole Earth Review
“This has been very powerful for a lot of women whose self-esteem is linked to how they feel about their intelligence.” Another way to turn your passion into a job is by volunteering first. Cecile began another career as director of Women’s Studies at a community college after working first as an unpaid intern. She created the job as part of her internship. “When you follow your passion, you don’t know where it’s going to lead,” Cecile says. “I always tell people to do what you love to do, then figure out how to earn a living from it.” Get Paid for Your Passion There are two ways to get paid for your passion: make it your full-time career or a part-time sideline.
Tools of Titans: The Tactics, Routines, and Habits of Billionaires, Icons, and World-Class Performers by Timothy Ferriss
Airbnb, Alexander Shulgin, artificial general intelligence, asset allocation, Atul Gawande, augmented reality, back-to-the-land, Ben Horowitz, Bernie Madoff, Bertrand Russell: In Praise of Idleness, Black Swan, blue-collar work, Boris Johnson, Buckminster Fuller, business process, Cal Newport, call centre, caloric restriction, caloric restriction, Charles Lindbergh, Checklist Manifesto, cognitive bias, cognitive dissonance, Colonization of Mars, Columbine, commoditize, correlation does not imply causation, David Brooks, David Graeber, diversification, diversified portfolio, Donald Trump, effective altruism, Elon Musk, fault tolerance, fear of failure, Firefox, follow your passion, future of work, Google X / Alphabet X, Howard Zinn, Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, Jeff Bezos, job satisfaction, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, John Markoff, Kevin Kelly, Kickstarter, Lao Tzu, lateral thinking, life extension, lifelogging, Mahatma Gandhi, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, Mason jar, Menlo Park, Mikhail Gorbachev, MITM: man-in-the-middle, Nelson Mandela, Nicholas Carr, optical character recognition, PageRank, passive income, pattern recognition, Paul Graham, peer-to-peer, Peter H. Diamandis: Planetary Resources, Peter Singer: altruism, Peter Thiel, phenotype, PIHKAL and TIHKAL, post scarcity, post-work, premature optimization, QWERTY keyboard, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Ray Kurzweil, recommendation engine, rent-seeking, Richard Feynman, risk tolerance, Ronald Reagan, selection bias, sharing economy, side project, Silicon Valley, skunkworks, Skype, Snapchat, social graph, software as a service, software is eating the world, stem cell, Stephen Hawking, Steve Jobs, Stewart Brand, superintelligent machines, Tesla Model S, The future is already here, The Wisdom of Crowds, Thomas L Friedman, Wall-E, Washington Consensus, Whole Earth Catalog, Y Combinator, zero-sum game
His most famous works are the surprisingly readable Practical Ethics and Animal Liberation. Derek Parfit, who has spent his entire life at All Souls College at Oxford, which is elite even within Oxford. Derek wrote a book called Reasons and Persons, which Will considers one of the most important books written in the 20th century. “Follow Your Passion” Is Terrible Advice “I think it misconstrues the nature of finding a satisfying career and satisfying job, where the biggest predictor of job satisfaction is mentally engaging work. It’s the nature of the job itself. It’s not got that much to do with you. . . . It’s whether the job provides a lot of variety, gives you good feedback, allows you to exercise autonomy, contributes to the wider world—Is it actually meaningful?