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Do You Have to Love Your Job?

Is it OK to be in a job that's just 'fine'?

As a Career Coach, I see a lot of fired-up statements in my industry. Find a job you LOVE! Land your DREAM job! How to get PASSION back into your work!

I've written before about the con of the Dream Job, but what about the idea of Love? Passion? Are these needed in a career? Or is it perfectly fine to have a career that just pays the bills, and that's it? Let's unpack it.

A woman sits in a cafe working on her laptop smiling as though she loves her job

What Does 'Love Your Job' Really Mean?

Before I left my corporate career to become a Career Coach, when I would think about people who love their jobs...

  • I imagined them bouncing out of bed.

  • I imagined them full of energy at all times.

  • I imagined beaming smiles throughout the day.

But are these fair assumptions?

I would genuinely say that I love being a coach.

Do I bounce out of bed? No, waking up has always been painful.

But there's a quiet yet meaningful impact on my outlook and mood. I feel content, I have slow mornings, and I have an inner peace where before there was some turmoil. My husband notices that I seem more like myself, and there's a lightness to me.

Perhaps that's what loving your role really looks like - it's not necessarily a beaming smile and bounce in your step, but it's a sense of calm and quiet contentedness. A sense of being able to be your full, true self.

But Is LOVE A Reasonable Goal?

Here's the thing. I'm just not sure we need to bring love into it.

Having a job which suits you, which leverages your strengths, and which allows you to contribute, learn and grow, is fabulous.

Love may be a wonderful bonus for the lucky few, but for the many, I don't think it's necessary.

I've had maybe 10 jobs over my HR career. Whilst I haven't LOVED any of them, I've really enjoyed many. I got so much satisfaction out of:

  • A great team

  • Being well paid

  • Being challenged

  • A supportive manager

  • A flexible workplace

  • A collaborative culture

  • Doing work I was good at

Not everyone is going to be super passionate about their work. Some people aren't the 'burning-passion-burst-forth-from-my-heart' types of personalities.

Some people quietly enjoy their work, and their colleagues, and go home and don't think about it. And that's fine.

In fact, according to a UK YouGov poll, only 17% of British workers love their job. So, is it necessary?

I think it's a balance. Because the flip slide to loving your job, is seriously damaging.

Whilst loving your job isn't essential to your happiness, having a job that you actively HATE certainly is a direct cause of unhappiness.

You can't put a container around a job that you hate. It will leak into your life, spoiling everything.

But can you compartmentalise a job that's just 'fine', be happy for what it is, and not think about if after 5pm? You absolutely can, and for many that's a perfectly sound goal for their career.

Are You A Million Miles Away From Love?

If you are more towards the 'I-hate-my-job' end, than the 'this-is-fine' end of the job spectrum, then that is certainly not something to tolerate.

If you want help figuring out what would bring you greater energy and enjoyment, then be sure to subscribe to this blog, and why not book a call to explore how coaching can get you there!

Always on your side,

CEO and Founder, Clarity Coaching with Louise


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