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Day 20 — Passion & Pursuing Wealth

Someone sent me this meme on Twitter and it hit home hard.

I think the advice that your work should be your passion is pretty harmful when applied to a lot of people. It's difficult to derive the same enjoyment out of a hobby when your livelihood begins to depend on it. You start looking for other escapes, and the thing that once brought you joy loses its luster.

At the same time, I've met many people whose job is genuinely fun and exciting for them every single day.

I think the difference, unfortunately, comes down to money. It's easy to continue loving what you do when you never have to worry about when your next paycheck is coming in. You're confident that, at the end of the day, you and your family will be covered.

If that's not the case, the anxiety of making a living can easily turn into resentment for the activity that once brought you so much joy.

With the rise of Passion Economy startups like Substack, Patreon, etc., I see two possibilities:

  1. People find better, more sustainable ways to monetize passions.
  2. Eventually, people realize that monetizing your passion isn't all it's cracked up to be, and we need more.

I'm not sure where I stand. I'm glad that people have more opportunity to make a living off of things they love, but I'm afraid that feeding into the attention economy will only lead us down a hole of being "always-on" laborers."