Tag Archives | passions

Why “Follow Your Passions” Is Dangerous Advice

I learnt something this week which will stop me from ever encouraging anyone to ‘follow their passions.’ Oh- I’ve said it many times. But never again. It’s just too dangerous advice. Here’s why.

I know of several young adults finishing school who are deciding career paths, and university course choices. My advice to them: ‘Follow your passions.’ It’s the new age approach, right? Then I actually thought about it. It’s deeply flawed counsel. How on earth does a 17 year old have any clue what their passions are? I’m 54 and am only just getting some clarity on what these might be for me.

Sir Ken Robinson talks about ‘working in your element’: doing what you love and what you’re good at. It’s within that concept that the best advice to any younger talent lies. It’s not about passion. It’s about the other bit. Here it is:

Here’s The Best Advice You Will Get All Year

A new year stretches out before us, winking optimism, opportunity, freshness and renewal. And to help you make this a great year, I am going to share some brilliant advice I have just received. It is a gem- and if you deliver on it, will make 2014 an outstanding year. Promise. Here it is.

I love the ‘fresh start’ that January brings. It lifts my spirits, and makes me feel ‘anything is possible.’ I plan accordingly! Sadly, history tells me that by about March, I will have sunk back into the depths of deadlines, ‘to do’ lists, pressure, and a string of broken promises with myself. I lose sight of what drives, inspires and gives me purpose. But not this year. No, no, no! You see- I read a piece of advice while on my break that I know will make this year a triumph of mindfulness and happiness. It can for you too. If you’re up for it. Here’s that gem.