What Do You Want To Be When You Grow Up?

To this day, I cannot say with any ounce of certainty exactly what it is that I want to be when I grow up. Complicating matters is that I’m thirtysomething and Married with Children (well, child). Considering that I have a family of my own, and am old enough to vividly remember when those shows were on the air, I should have this figured out by now…right?!

At various points throughout my life, I thought I had the answer. Then, for whatever reason, I’d lose interest with the idea of pursuing one career path and replace it with the newfound excitement of a different career path. This has been a continual cycle. The one constant has been that none of the things I’ve momentarily wanted to be has ever undisputedly captured my soul and staked claim to being the one.

What would the one look like? In my mind there has always been three key criteria that would need to be met:

  1. Am I passionate about the work? I need to do something I truly believe in and something that I truly enjoy doing.
  2. Is the passion sustainable? I need to be confident that I’ll feel that same level of belief and enjoyment over the long haul.
  3. Will it provide financial security? I need to make enough money that I won’t have to worry about money.

That’s it. Three not-so-simple questions that typically play out in my head something like this…

Out of all the things I really enjoy doing, how do I choose just one to build a career around? Whichever one I choose will most assuredly get most of my time and energy. And after investing so much into just one of my passions, will I still enjoy it or will it eventually just become “work?” Even if I feel content with the answers to those questions, can I make enough money doing this for me and my family to live comfortably?

While I’m not quite there yet, I feel closer than I ever have to finally figuring it all out. I have an idea but I still don’t know exactly what I want to be when I grow up and, I’m OK with that. I know I’m not alone. I, like countless others, will continue to work and put my best foot forward while longing for something more, something to satisfy the void in the pit of my stomach, something that undisputedly captures my soul and stakes claim to being the one.

What do you want to be when you grow up? If you’ve achieved it, how did you know? If you haven’t, how will you know?

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