Wednesday, January 27, 2010


I have two pt clients (and more importantly friends) that I have worked with for a long time now - since the mid 90's! These two were both at the top of their respective career fields. Both extremely successful and both sinking 100% of their energy into their work. I watched them both retire six to seven years ago and I've watched them both become depressed, and age twenty years in that time. I've tried every trick in the book I know to inject some form of passion into these two guys. I've learned a major life lesson, one that is often heard and more often probably blown off; One needs to create their own passion and motivation. You can find motivation from another person but it usually doesn't last. These two guys sunk their whole lives into their work. You pull that out from under them and they have nothing else to fill the void. I've watched them try different hobbies, only to get frustrated because they couldn't pick it up easily, their patience has diminished with age, and they're used to being great at the one thing they were passionate about. It's an extremely sad thing to witness. Hindsight showed that maybe they shouldn't have retired. I also work with a guy the same age as these two who did just that. He's continued to work, although at a much less commitment than he once did. He also developed other passions in his life at a young age and pursued them - his passions being tennis and skiing. His outlook on life in general is the polar opposite of my two other guys, and I base this on the fact that he never left his passions.

Bill Gates and Warren Buffett were recently doing a Q&A on some show. Two of the more brilliant and successful minds of our time and also they happen to be friends with each other. They answered many questions on the current economic situation in our country. One young woman who was in college and had yet to select a major asked them what career they thought would be the hot, up and coming one that she should focus her studies on. Gates gave a technology answer and went into more specifics. Buffet, for the first time during this show, disagreed with Gates. I'm paraphrasing, but he answered with something like; "Pursue a career in something your passionate in. Just pursue passion. Then, you will be successful. There aren't nearly enough young people these days truly pursuing their passion."

I don't care what you're passionate about, but have a passion and pursue it daily. Give it just a bit of time when that's all that you have or a lot of time if you can spare it, but each day, work on your passion.




Keith said...

I feel sorry for your friends. Buffet was totally correct. There's a good book on it, called "Do what you Love, the money will follow". Don't know the author off hand, but those interested will google it.

So many people get tied into chasing the $, then they get hooked on a lifestyle. They feel they have to have that 3rd car, the big house, the tech toys, ect, ect, ect. What they really are is vulnerable to every twitch in the economy, and then they'll end up like your friends. Personally, I think "Lifestyles of the rich and famous" is one of the most pernicious shows on TV. It totally warps people's minds about how to live.

Eric said...

Great comment Keith. Many people are already planted deeply in their career so whether they are passionate about it or not, it's very important to have passion somewhere in your life. Thanks for reading and commenting!

Greg said...

Eric I agree 100%.

You can always see passion and drive in people who have it and it is almost contagious. I thank God for having that drive and spark and hope it never fades.

In the words of 80's rocker Graham Parker "Passion is no ordinary word"!