The only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you think of some of the world’s greatest athletes, they all share a deep passion for their work. I remember the French football legend Zinedine Zidane once said, as a child he would take a football with him when he went to bed. That’s how much he loved the game. His dedication to what he loves the most clearly drove him to great success.
But sometimes starting to do what you love can be the hardest part. Maybe you are not yet aware of what you want to do, maybe you feel a lack of prospects or maybe you just don’t want to get out of your comfort zone. These four steps helped me to move forward and to finally start doing what I love.
1. Conduct a thorough self-reflection
First of all take your time and identify your strengths and weaknesses. Make sure you really know what skills you have. Assess yourself, but also ask for external feedback. Eventually think about your passion. Is there something that you really enjoy doing? If you haven’t found it yet, just keep looking.
While reflecting on myself around 18 months ago, I was able to sharpen the outline of my personal skills and most importantly my passion. As a huge fan of sports ever since my childhood I realized I wanted to devote myself more to sports.
2. Define a goal for your future
What would you love to do then? Think of different scenarios, apply your skills and also let your dreams inspire you.
The next step for me was to implement my passion for sports into my daily routine. I wanted to discover new sports activities, gain new perspectives and embed sports more intensely in my life on both a personal and professional level.
3. Carefully scan your environment for opportunities and actively pursue them
When you’ve figured out your future goals, come back into the present. Start to scan your current environment carefully and see whether there are any opportunities which could potentially bring you closer towards your goal. Consider relationships, activities, skills, knowledge or just daily occurrences, it can be anything. You might find it hard to do right away, but keep thinking it through. The picture will get clearer eventually. Once you are able to identify your opportunities, chase them down. No excuses!
I started to write a blog about brand communication in football to combine my professional knowledge with my passion. Then I realized I wanted to learn more about leadership in sports so I volunteered as an assistant coach for my local team to experience team sports from a different angle. I also started to attend several sports-related talks to broaden my horizon.
4. Get closer to your goal by bringing all pieces together
Going through the three previous steps I not only managed to spend more quality time on my passion, but also elevated myself higher towards my goal. Suddenly all my actions led to new paths, gave me new perspectives and eventually created new opportunities, such as working for a sports-driven company like adidas. Just like a puzzle, all those little parts came together, interlaced and established an environment which now allows me to do what I love. These things were around me all the time, I just never recognized them as actual opportunities.