“Do what you love and love what you do.” You may have heard the saying before. While it sounds simple, it might be trickier than thought. Life challenges and pressure from outside can lead us to end up doing things we don’t love.
Does it really matter if we love what we do? Or is it a luxury of life? What is the meaning of do what you love?
What does do what you love mean?
Doing what you love, focusses on the essence of your being. It touches on what God placed in you as your life-calling, your life-purpose. It is that what you were made to do.
Even if no-one rewards you for it or gives you recognition, you would still do it. If it cost you your sleep, you would still do the activity. Doing what you love means you consistently perform every aspect, including the less enjoyable parts. If you are not in love with those parts of the work, you are not in love with what you do.
What doing what you love really means is you love the process (the act of doing it) more than the outcome. It means you love the work of doing what you do every day, regardless of night-shifts and early morning wake-up calls.
If your love is a title, money, or a position, you won’t find happiness or fulfillment in your work. Satisfaction and happiness only come from the process. It is the love you have for the doing that ultimately leads to happiness and fulfillment. That’s where the long-term wins are.
Doing what you love is part of loving yourself. It lets you enjoy life—and yourself.
Knowing and doing what you love will empower you in many ways. It will enhance your decision-making and enable you to act accordingly. Getting to understand what you love doing, is an important step in the journey of personal growth.
Does the Bible say do what you love?
The things we love have been placed in us by God, for a reason. Those things are in line with our life-calling. While the Bible does not literally say ‘do what you love’, Ecclesiastes 3 verses 12 and 13 gives a close description of the meaning of doing what you love:
“So I concluded there is nothing better than to be happy and enjoy ourselves as long as we can. And people should eat and drink and enjoy the fruits of their labor, for these are gifts from God.”
Doing what you love is a gift of God. We can toil and work, but will not achieve it by ourselves. It’s vital to find out what you love, and then do it. It does not only align your life with God’s will for you, it will also give you a happier and more fulfilled life.
God encourages us to fo everything with love, including the things we do:
“Let all that you do be done with love.”1 Corinthians 16:14 (NKJV)
Why you should do what you love
What is the importance of doing what you love? One of the most valuable lessons I’ve learned during my career path is to do something you love to do. Why is this important? I feel that if you enjoy what you make a living at; you end up being happy in more ways than one.
This is your life, do what you love. Life itself becomes much more interesting and fun. You speak passionately to others about your work. The experiences you have along the way become much more rewarding and enrich your life. You meet fascinating people.
I know people who have turned favorite hobbies into small businesses, and have succeeded. Sure, they may have had to sacrifice a steady paycheck for their happiness, but not one of them either turned back or gave up. Their passion carried them through to success.
Pursuing what you love is important for your overall level of happiness and your total well-being. Exploring and investing in the activities and experiences that bring joy to your life can bring greater rewards than money or any other earthly possessions.
Here’s why doing what you love matters, and the benefits of doing what you love.
Find meaning and purpose
Doing what you love is important for many reasons. One of the most important is that it allows you to find meaning and purpose in life. When you devote your time, energy, and passion to something that matters deeply to you, it provides clarity and direction, giving your life an overall sense of purpose.
Finding meaning and purpose from activities you have a genuine connection with can bring a sense of satisfaction that nothing else can offer. And when you align yourself with God’s will for your life, you will walk in the purpose God has for you. Living at peace with God’s plan for you will ensure you do what you love (and love what you do).
Live a more fulfilling life
By following your (God-given) passions and doing more of what you love, you can live a life full of satisfaction and joy. Taking the time to invest in yourself and find true purpose from activities that matter deeply to you can bring about personal fulfillment.
Investing in yourself by pursuing your interests will give you the clarity and direction to make sure that you spend every day doing something truly meaningful.
Supports your mental health and well-being
Doing what you love can be therapeutic and boosts your mental state and well-being. When we focus on activities that make us feel good, it releases hormones like serotonin and dopamine in the brain which help to reduce stress and anxiety.
Engaging in what you are passionate about is also linked with higher self-esteem and improved sleep quality. This can cause an overall healthier mind, important for times when life is difficult or stressful.
Increases Confidence and Boosts Self-Esteem
When we pursue things we are passionate about, it can increase our confidence and self-esteem. This is because by engaging in activities that require skill or concentration, we can gain a newfound appreciation of our abilities.
By setting and then achieving goals, understanding ourselves better, and recognizing strengths and weaknesses, it empowers us to reach higher levels of achievement in all areas of life.
Helps to stop being a people-pleaser
One of the many benefits of doing what you love is that it can help you break free from the people-pleasing cycle. When you focus on your passions and pursue what truly brings you joy, you’re less likely to seek validation from others. This newfound sense of confidence and self-assurance will empower you to make decisions that align with your values and interests, rather than constantly worrying about what others think.
People-pleasers often struggle with saying no, setting boundaries, and standing up for themselves. However, when you prioritize your passions and interests, you’re more likely to feel comfortable speaking up for yourself and making decisions that prioritize your own happiness. So, if you’ve been feeling stuck in the people-pleasing cycle, it might be time to start doing what you love and prioritizing your own happiness and well-being.
Do what you love–What do you love?
If doing what you love is important, then you must first determine what you love. Doing exactly that is what will give you fulfillment in life.
“What do you want to be when you grow up?” I’m sure people have asked you this question at least once when you were a youngster. Did you have an answer ready, or did you need a few minutes to think about it? We all had dreams of becoming something great, like a fireman, a teacher, or a rock star, just to name a few.
Well, how did you do? Maybe you never aspired to be what you set out to be or said that you would become. But then again, things change. The older we get, our tastes change, our view of the world changes, even our goals change.
No matter how old you are now, it is always worth to have a closer look at what you are doing, whether you love it, and what (other) things you love doing.
Here are 10 ways to find your passion:
- What have you been doing since you were a child?
- What would you continue doing even if you don’t get paid for it?
- What are the things you are good at?
- Ask people who know you very well what they think you are good at.
- Make a list of things you enjoy doing.
- What energizes you?
- Practice journaling.
- Find out what you do effortlessly for hours (without getting bored).
- Look back: what were you doing when you felt in the flow?
- What is your vision of a really fulfilling life?
Things to check to find out the other way round:
- What drains your energy?
- What do you NOT love?
- What are you not good at?
- What do you not improve in, no matter how often you try?
Are you doing what you love?
While no job or business is perfect, the important thing is to enjoy it, even learn from it. If you are unhappy in your current situation, why not take steps now to change it? Somewhere out there is a job or business that is perfect for you.
If you are already there, I applaud you. If not, realize that it may take some time to figure out what you really want to do, and even more time to actually get there. That’s all right!
I can tell you from experience that finding and doing what you love is absolutely worth it, every step of the way. All the research, training, and hands-on experience have made me a stronger, happier person. Feeling in charge of my destiny… well, there just is no greater feeling.
It is worth to look around you and to assess the things you do daily. Determine the ones you simply need to do (such as doing the dishes…) and the ones that add value to your life. Then, as much as possible, eliminate the things that don’t add value to your life and are unnecessary.
You may have to cut some things you currently do, and make some sacrifices here and there, but eventually it will lead to a rewarding and fulfilling life. You’ll be happier for it, trust me. I promise you will never look back.
Put time aside to find out what you love, and then… do what you love, and love what you do—whatever that may be.
I would say, always do what you love!