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Wishing you a very Merry Christmas

Posted by Joanne on December 24, 2012 Comments Off

Tis the season for sharing the valuable commodity of TIME with loved ones. Wishing you a very Merry Christmas surrounded by the most important people in your life. Disconnect and be in the moment. That is what Christmas is all about.


Wishing you lots of love and laughter, Joanne

Tips for Finding Your Passion

Posted by Joanne on December 21, 2012 Comments Off

Last week’s blog was about following your passion, but following your passion is a journey and it isn’t always easy. First you have to find it. And it can be a long and winding journey with ups and downs.

Tips for finding your passion

  1. Reflect on what you enjoyed doing when you were a child. As a child did you enjoy building towers and bridges, and taking apart radios to “see what’s inside?” If you did you might find your passion as an engineer, or mechanic. If you liked drawing and art, plus building structures, then you might find your passion as an architect.
  2. Listen to the commonality in the words used to describe you or the nicknames given to you. “S/he would be a great lawyer.” And most especially why? “S/he is a great debater who has a well thought out approach about an issue and knows how to argue her case.” If you were called “The Harmony Builder” or “Ann Landers” as a teenager because you were a good listener and looked at both sides of an issue and your peers sought you out to help solve relationship issues, you might well find your passion in social work, counselling, or another one of the helping professions, including Human Resources.
  3. Contemplate on the courses you enjoyed the most at school. If you loved writing poetry, and English classes, including grammar, you might find your passion in writing travel articles while travelling the world. If you enjoyed Math because it involved a system, formula, and process to obtain the correct answer, you might enjoy work that is more absolute and process-driven like an financial analyst or programming.
  4. Think about the jobs you enjoyed the most. If you had a job at a grocery store, did you enjoy interacting with customers while on cash, or would you rather have been behind the scenes wrapping chickens? This will indicate whether you are more task-oriented or people-oriented and will help you find your passion at work. If you were in sales and loved it, but then accepted a position as a Sales Manager and hated it, you know where to find your passion.
  5. Use assessment tools like Myers-Briggs, to increase your own self-awareness. Are you an extravert who gets energy from active involvement in a variety of activities and gets excited around people or are you an introvert who gets energy from ideas, pictures, and reactions inside your own head, who prefers doing things alone or with one or two people? If you are an introvert and a supervisor in a manufacturing plant dealing with people issues all day, you will likely come home drained and you might find your passion in a more task-oriented role like an analyst or an electrician.
  6. Think about your current job. What are the tasks you enjoy the most and the least? If you enjoy a specific task, talk to your manager to find out how you can increase the scope of that responsibility in your career plan. What type of work environments do you thrive in? One that is more structured or one that is ambiguous and free flowing. This will help you find your passion.
  7. Volunteer if you can’t find your passion at work. If you can’t find your passion at work, and changing jobs is not an option, seek out a place when you can volunteer in an area that you enjoy. Maybe it’s volunteering with a crisis support centre or building homes with Habitat for Humanity.
  8. Look at the hobbies that bring you passion. Do you love photography or cooking? Continue to do that until you can leverage your skill and passion into full-time work.


Will mistakes be made? Yes.    Will finding your passion take time? Yes.

Finding your passion involves time, energy, and self-awareness. Very rarely does it just happen.

Find and follow your passion. But remember that the journey is it.

How did you find your passion? What obstacles are you encountering in your journey to find your passion?


Royce and Associates offers career coaching, workshops and assessments to help individuals find their passion. Contact us for more info.

Follow your passion; it is a journey

Posted by Joanne on December 14, 2012 Comments Off

With every generation there is a shift in how each group thinks about life and work, and what each generation values most.

Workaholic, helicopter parents versus entitled, instant gratification children

Not the best labels, but we all do it, don’t we? It is important not to label any generation or make overly-generalized statements about each group. While each generation views work and life from different angles because of different experiences during their formative years, it is important to value our differences, and to search for commonalities as opportunities to connect.

This graph shows how the “Follow your passion” phrase has been referenced more frequently by the media and by parents during Gen Y’s formative years, so it is understandable they have this idea about work and life. When I saw this graph on a colleague’s Facebook page, I commented:

Does everyone agree with follow your passion in this job market for young people? Does it get you your first job? I read a great post a while ago from a millennial who wished she (he) didn’t get that advice because it doesn’t say anything about doing the “not so great stuff” (my words) before getting to follow your passion. She(he) actually said it wasn’t good advice and she (he) would have rather had the ‘real life’ message and practical advice. It was interesting reading that post. It’s even more interesting that the ‘follow your passion’ message is coming from GenY’s parents, a generation who were brought up by parents whose message to them was “work hard.”

P.S. I’m all for following your passion, but it’s not as easy as the message sometimes infers.

It was ironic because I was referring to a blog written by GenY by Cal Newport (although I mistakenly referred to him as a her), on the Harvard Business Review Blog called “Solving Gen Y’s Passion Problem” and it actually included the same visual. It’s a great post and highlights some of the difficulties with the “Follow your passion” phrase. Cal says:

This simple phrase, “follow your passion,” turns out to be surprisingly pernicious. It’s hard to argue, of course, against the general idea that you should aim for a fulfilling working life. But this phrase requires something more. The verb “follow” implies that you start by identifying a passion and then match this preexisting calling to a job. Because the passion precedes the job, it stands to reason that you should love your work from the very first day.

It’s this final implication that causes damage. When I studied people who love what they do for a living, I found that in most cases their passion developed slowly, often over unexpected and complicated paths. It’s rare, for example, to find someone who loves their career before they’ve become very good at it — expertise generates many different engaging traits, such as respect, impact, autonomy — and the process of becoming good can be frustrating and take years.

I’m a big advocate of following your passion, and doing what you love. But I also coach my children and clients to, “Find your passion, but until you do, bring your passion to work and life.” My parents used to say, “Work hard and do it with a smile.” We can only find our passion through experience, successes and failures, and understanding our own likes and dislikes.

We all want a nice home, but we still have to take out the garbage.

That’s something I say and use as an analogy to illustrate what needs to be done to find your passion. It’s important not to sugar coat the journey. “Follow” and “find” are indeed, verbs. Sometimes we have to do the not so great stuff to get to the passion. It is not instantaneous and there will be ups and downs along the way.

“Real life is expensive. Can’t wait until payday.”

This quote is from my recently graduated GenY son. He is enjoying his first career job, related to the field of his study and has his first apartment. Yes, real life is expensive. It would be great if money did not matter, but it does. Bills have to get paid, and the economy needs to be healthy for us to create jobs that allow us to find and to follow our passion. Luckily he is working in a job where he is learning, and enjoying the people he works with including playing on the company’s hockey team.

It is a journey. And the journey is it.


Next week, Follow your passion, but first you have to find it! Tips on finding your passion.


(Disclaimer: I am a boomer (cusper) mom with young adult GenY children).


Related posts you may enjoy:

Social Notworking versus Social Networking

Generational Communication Preferences – Boomers and Gen Y

Generational preferences – Gen Y and Boomers

Generations at Work – Valuing our differences (with a little bit of a pitch for my workshop)


More information about A Royce & Associates Workshop
Generations At Work – Valuing Our Differences

 Joanne Royce

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Use our insider tips on human resources, training, and interpersonal relationships to create your own happy, healthy, and productive workplace. We'll also comment on life in general and share info and highlights from books.

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