“Be unreasonable, follow your passion.”

Sudha Murty, Educator

Pros and Cons of Following your Passion

advantages and disadvantages of following your passion instead of money

Many people in our current state of the world are not really happy with their jobs and with their overall life. Yet, many of them are too afraid to follow their passion and go for a good salary instead, even though they might hate their jobs.

If you are currently struggling with your life and don’t feel happy, you may rather want to follow your passions and dreams, even though you might not earn too much from your job.

In this article, the pros and cons of following your dreams vs. money are discussed in detail.

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Advantages of Following your Passion vs. Money

  1. You can do what you love
  2. You will be quite motivated by following your passion
  3. Following your passion will likely work out in the long run
  4. You will be happy to get up in the morning
  5. Following your passion can lower your stress level
  6. Chances for mental issues may be lower
  7. Finding meaning in life is really important
  8. Your workweek will fly by
  9. You will attract true friends
  10. You can start your own business around your passion
  11. Following your dreams can make you more confident
  12. You can grow as a person
  13. Your overall quality of life will be higher
  14. Your friends will envy you deep inside
  15. Money is not happiness anyway
  16. You will naturally become good at what you like
  17. Following your dreams prevents you from having regrets later on in your life

You can do what you love

One important advantage of following your passion instead of money is that you can really do what you love. In fact, nothing is more devastating than going to a job you hate. In fact, many people who are just working in their jobs to earn good money are deeply sad and secretly want a change. Yet, they are just not brave enough to make those big changes.

However, you should ask yourself how you want to live your life and whether you want to get to work every day in a bad mood or if you rather want to be happy with what you are doing. If you follow your passion, chances are that you will really love what you are doing and you will often rather want to work instead of doing anything else since it will be so much fun to you.

You will be quite motivated by following your passion

In fact, your overall level of motivation will be much higher if you follow your dreams compared to just chasing for money. The number in your bank account will lose its attractiveness quite soon while your passion will likely follow you forever.

Hence, chances are that you will also work much longer hours and also work much more efficiently if you follow your dreams compared to a regular office job that is just a means of making money for you.

Consequently, since you will have a much higher motivation at work, you will also get more things done and you will have a higher motivation to push through difficult times.

Following your passion will likely work out in the long run

Another benefit of following your dreams instead of money is that you will also likely be quite successful in the long run. Sure, in the short run, you may leave plenty of money on the table if you quit a high-salary job and follow your passion.

However, over time, things may change. In fact, if you follow your passion and work long hours every day of the week and are also much more productive compared to your old job, chances are that you will also earn really good money from your passion in the long run.

Therefore, following your passion does not necessarily contradict earning lots of money. It just often means that it will take you longer to get there.

You will be happy to get up in the morning

If you follow your dreams, you will also be quite happy to get up in the morning. In fact, I love what I am doing and get up in the morning quite early every day. In fact, I barely have any time off, yet this doesn’t bother me at all since I can’t think of many other things I’d rather do. Many people often claim that working too much leads to burnout and unhappiness.

I partly disagree with that. In my opinion, this is only true if you work in a job you hate. If you love what you are doing, you can work 60 hours + a week and still be in a pretty good mood. In fact, I work quite hard and I am still happy to get up in the morning to get things done for my business.

Following your passion can lower your stress level

Another upside of following your dreams instead of money is that you can also significantly lower your stress level. In fact, in our current state of the world, many people complain that they suffer from excessive stress and burnout. In fact, if you work in a demanding office job and also have to manage your family life, this can be quite exhausting in the long run.

This is especially true if you work in a job you just do for the money. However, if you follow your passion, you will feel much better and your stress level will usually be much lower. In fact, if you really love what you are doing, you will not consider your work as real work. It will rather be your hobby that provides you with the opportunity to make a living out of it.

In turn, you will have much more energy and wake up in the morning in a good mood. In turn, with more energy and ambition, chances are that you will feel less stressed and can enjoy your life much more. Moreover, chances are that you will also sleep much better, which will further lower your stress level and improve your overall health.

Chances for mental issues may be lower

The number of people who suffer from mental problems skyrocketed over the past decades. In fact, due to excessive stress at work, people often suffer from burnout or depression. However, mental issues are not only caused by excessive stress, they are also due to the fact that most people don’t follow their passion.

In fact, if you are on your path and purpose, the chances that you will suffer from mental problems will be far lower compared to a state where you just chase money. If you really do what you feel you are meant to do all day long, chances are that you can minimize the risk to suffer from mental issues in the long run.

Finding meaning in life is really important

In general, by following your passion, you can also find true meaning in life. In fact, this is quite important for us to stay ambitious and also happy in the long run. If you look at all the people who go to work by public transport every day, you will soon realize that most of them don’t look happy at all.

In fact, the majority of people secretly hate what they are doing, yet they still go to work and behave like machines rather than human beings who have free will.

However, it should be obvious that doing things you hate for an extended period of time will lead to all sorts of issues and in my opinion, you will be far better off if you find true meaning through your passion and go for it in the best way you can.

Your workweek will fly by

If you love what you are doing, time will also fly. In fact, if you follow your passion, you will work quite hard and will get lots of work done every day. In contrast, if you work in a job you don’t like at all, chances are that you will often have a look at the clock and you may also secretly be looking forward to the weekend. In turn, your workweek will feel much longer.

Thus, in order to avoid this issue, following your dreams can also help in this regard since your work will rather feel like leisure and your workday will be over much sooner than you think.

You will attract true friends

If you follow your dreams instead of money, chances are that you will also attract true friends in your life. This is due to the fact that when you don’t have much money, you will attract people who really like you for who you are instead of just for what you can do for them.

Moreover, you will also attract many friends who have similar interests and values and chances are that these friendships will last quite long or even for a lifetime.

You can start your own business around your passion

If you are really passionate about what you are doing, you may also want to consider starting your own business. In fact, if you have your own business, you will have a much higher level of freedom compared to working for someone else.

Hence, if you feel confident enough to start your own business that is built around your dreams, this may be even better than working in a job you like for a company.

Following your dreams can make you more confident

Another chance of following your dreams is that it can also help you to become much more confident. In fact, if you quit your job you hate, you will have to justify it in front of your family and friends and chances are that many people will not be happy with your decision at all.

However, by going through all of this, chances are that you will become much happier and also much more confident in the long run since you will not care about other opinions too much anymore.

You can grow as a person

In general, following your dreams can also really let you grow in character since it implies that you will not go the easiest path but will have to solve many different problems on your way.

By dealing with all those issues, you will soon notice that there will be a solution to almost every problem. In turn, chances are that you will develop an inner voice that can help you navigate through different periods of your life.

Your overall quality of life will be higher

Since you can do what you love all day long, chances are that your overall quality of life will be much higher compared to a state where you just chase money and work in a job you hate.

In fact, not only will you be much more ambitious if you work for yourself, you will also have much more energy for various other parts of life since you will know deep inside that you are on the right track.

Your friends will envy you deep inside

Many people actually want to follow their dreams. However, the problem is that very few of them actually find the courage to do so. In fact, most people just stay in their safe corporate job and don’t want to take any risk. However, this often leads to a great level of unhappiness and inner emotional conflict.

Thus, if you find the courage to really go for your passion, chances are that many of your friends will envy you and will secretly see you as an idol, even though they might not tell you about it.

Money is not happiness anyway

In general, many people in our society also confuse money with happiness. In fact, we are often told that in order to be happy in life, we have to earn lots of money. While money can be important to cover our basic expenses, it will not be able to make us happy. In fact, the number on your bank account will not make you happy in the long run and many people fall for this flawed belief.

Hence, in my opinion, money can’t buy us happiness and following your passion will make you much happier than earning high salaries in the long run.

You will naturally become good at what you like

Since you will be quite ambitious and will work quite hard when you follow your passion, chances are that you will also become really good at what you are doing. In turn, if you really good at something and provide plenty of value for other people, you may even be able to earn really good money from your passion in the long run.

In fact, following your dreams and earning good money at the same time is perfectly doable. It just takes plenty of work and perseverance to get to this point.

Following your dreams prevents you from having regrets later on in your life

One of the worst feelings that you can have in life is regret. In fact, regret can break people and if you just work for the money, chances are that you will look back on your life once you are retired and feel high levels of regret and unhappiness.

If you really want to look back on your life and be happy with it, it is necessary that you do the things you love instead of just going for the job that pays you the most.

Disadvantages of Following your Dreams instead of Money

  1. You may earn less money
  2. You may not be able to afford proper health insurance
  3. Following your dreams may lead to old-age poverty
  4. You may lose some friends by following your passion
  5. Following your dreams can be mentally hard
  6. Pressure can be enormous
  7. Following your passion may lead to financial problems
  8. Even harder in case you have a family
  9. Many people are just not brave enough to follow their passion
  10. Your peers may try to bring you down
  11. You may start too early
  12. Many people don’t have the patience to follow their dreams

You may earn less money

Although there are many important advantages of following your passion instead of money, there are also some issues related to this concept. For instance, following your passion can lead to a state where you will earn far less money compared to staying in a high-salary corporate job. However, note that this is not always true.

Sure, in the short run, you will earn less money. Yet, in the long run, you may be able to earn really good money if you build your own business around the things you love.

You may not be able to afford proper health insurance

Especially in the first months or even years, you may not earn too much money from your passion. In fact, some people who quit their jobs will even not be able to pay for proper health insurance. This can lead to serious issues in case of emergency and you should always make sure that you have proper health insurance.

Thus, if you decide to follow your passion, at least make sure that you have a financial buffer that can give you access to proper health insurance for the first time of your new career.

Following your dreams may lead to old-age poverty

Another problem with following your dreams is that you may suffer from old-age poverty. In fact, if you follow your passion and don’t earn enough money, chances are that you will not be able to save and to invest enough money for your retirement.

In turn, you may not have enough money to pay your bills once you get old and in the worst case, you may even end up homeless since you might no longer be able to pay your rent.

You may lose some friends by following your passion

If you quit your corporate job and follow your passion, chances are that you will also lose some friends. In fact, many people will not be happy with your decision and may no longer want to hang out with you.

Thus, you may also lose some contacts over time. However, note that these people had not been good friends anyway if they don’t support you on your mission towards happiness.

Following your dreams can be mentally hard

Another downside of following your passion is that it can be quite hard on a mental level. Sure, you will feel quite ambitious and happy to work on your projects. Yet, it can also be quite hard to push through difficult periods since success seems to be so far away and there seems to be no light at the end of the tunnel.

One key attribute of successful people is that they can push through difficult periods and if you don’t have this level of perseverance yet, you should definitely learn it before you quit your job and follow your passion.

Pressure can be enormous

Many people who followed their passion also report that the overall pressure can be enormous. In fact, it can be quite hard when you know that you have to pay rent, buy food and have additional expenses while you will not be able to earn enough money in the first months to cover your expenses. Thus, you definitely also should learn how to deal with pressure before you go for this difficult path.

Following your passion may lead to financial problems

If you follow your passion, you may also experience significant financial problems sooner or later. While some people are able to earn quite a lot of money by following their passion, others will struggle to cover their expenses and may have to get loans to finance their operations.

However, some people will never be able to pay back this debt, which in turn may lead to bankruptcy and to many unpleasant things related to it.

Even harder in case you have a family

While following your passion will be perfectly doable for you if you are single, it will be much harder for you in case you have kids. In fact, taking care of children can be quite time-consuming and especially in the first years, you will have to put a lot of effort and time into your business to make it successful.

However, you will often not have enough time to follow your passion if you have to take care of your kids all day long. Moreover, if you have kids, your overall expenses will be far higher and the financial pressure once you quit your job will be enormous.

Thus, if you have a family you have to take care of, you may rather want to play it safe instead of following your passion since the overall risk to mess up your life and the life of your family might simply be too high.

Many people are just not brave enough to follow their passion

While many people want to quit their jobs and follow their dreams, only few of them will actually be brave enough and do it. In fact, most people will just stay in their jobs and play it safe instead of taking the risk to make a change.

Your peers may try to bring you down

If you follow your dreams instead of going for money, chances are that also your peers will try to bring you down. In fact, we live in a world where success basically means earning as much money as possible.

Thus, in this context, your peers will often not understand your decision to quit your job that paid good money and you should make sure that you are mentally strong enough not to care too much about the opinion of those people who will often try to bring you down.

You may start too early

Many people are also so passionate about following their dreams that they start with it way too early. In fact, following your dreams also has to be practical and many people don’t really think about practical ways to get there.

In my opinion, if you really want to follow your passion, you should make sure that you have a financial buffer for the first months or even years so that you can build a business around your passion while you don’t have to fear that you will no longer be able to cover your expenses.

This can mean that you will have to work in a job you don’t like too much for a few years and save some money each month in order to have a financial cushion when you finally quit your job and go for your dream.

Many people don’t have the patience to follow their dreams

The reason why so many people fail with chasing their dreams is that they simply give up way too early. In fact, if you have a high level of perseverance and push through difficult periods, chances are that you will be successful sooner or later.

Hence, if you currently chase your dream, always remember that it takes plenty of hard work and also time for everyone of us to be successful. Thus, don’t give up too early and do everything you can to make your dreams come true!

Top 10 Following your Passion Pros & Cons – Summary List

Following your Passion ProsFollowing your Passion Cons
Following your passion can make you happierFollowing your passion can be hard
You can really learn about yourselfMay lead to financial problems
You may even earn more money in the long runSome friends may leave you
Following your passion can reduce stressYour parents may not understand you
You will feel much betterPeople will try to bring you down
You will be motivated to get up in the morningPotential lack of health insurance
You will work hard to achieve your dreamsYou may start too early to chase your dreams
Following your dreams is mentally healthyRequires high level of perseverance
Your friends will envy youMany people are not patient enough
You will naturally become good at what you doMany people will fail to achieve their dreams

Should You Follow Your Passions & Dreams?

Following your dreams instead of money is a rather controversial topic. As we have seen before, there are many advantages and disadvantages of following your dreams vs. money.

In my opinion, life is too short to do things you hate and if you currently struggle to find meaning in your daily life, it may be time for a change!

Sources

https://hbr.org/2019/10/3-reasons-its-so-hard-to-follow-your-passion

https://www.cnbc.com/2018/06/22/stanford-researchers-following-your-passion-makes-you-less-successful.html

https://steverosephd.com/what-does-it-mean-to-follow-your-passion/

About the author

My name is Andreas and my mission is to educate people of all ages about our environmental problems and how everyone can make a contribution to mitigate these issues.

As I went to university and got my Master’s degree in Economics, I did plenty of research in the field of Development Economics.

After finishing university, I traveled around the world. From this time on, I wanted to make a contribution to ensure a livable future for the next generations in every part of our beautiful planet.

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