Elena wants to feel excited, inspired, and proud of her career, and right now, she couldn't feel less passionate about what she does. But whenever she tries to work out what would make her happy, she comes up short. Does everyone have a passion to discover, or is she seeking something that doesn't exist?
What's your career history and current job?
I'm Senior Business Analyst for a software firm based in Leeds.
I started out as a junior analyst nine years ago, and I was slowly promoted up the ranks, more because of longevity than anything else.
How do you feel about your work?
I feel nothing at all about my work.
It's just a part of my life that has to be there, so I do it, and that's as far as it goes.
There are days when I'm proud of my achievements at work, but most of the time I'm just on the hamster wheel, going round and round, everything feeling like the same old routine, with the same old people, at the same old times every day.
I can't believe how fast the last nine years have slipped by, and I feel like I have nothing real to show for them. I'm sure there are people out there who would love to do what I do, because in theory it can be a really exciting job, but to me it just feels like another day of my life wasted.
What would you like to be doing instead?
I have no idea.
I know I want to have a job I love, and I want to feel proud of what I do. I want to work on something that feels meaningful to me, and that I can make a good living from, but that's as far as I can get with my ideas on where to go next.
What's the biggest obstacle in your way?
Not knowing what I want to do!
If I just had some idea of what I might love doing that could also use my skills and experience, I could make some progress, but I've simply no clue. I know of lots of different careers, obviously, but when I imagine them in my own life, none of them stand out as a real possibility for me.
And the fact that I have no ideas means I'm trapped.
I want to get going and start making meaningful changes in my life, because I know I can't carry on like this for much longer, but I can't start when I don't know where I'm going.
I want to feel inspired and excited, and I want to have that drive and motivation to go after something, and I can't even find a trace of that feeling in myself. In fact, I'm not sure I ever have. I hear people talking about their passions and following their dreams and I love the thought of doing that myself, but is it possible I just don't have any?
Could I just be a passionless person?
- Have you been in the same position, or are you feeling that way right now?
- Does everyone have something they'll truly love, or are there, as Elena says, "passionless" people?
- What could she do to move forward with her career change?
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