How Convicted Are You To Your Passion?

When I was young there was nothing that could stop my conviction.  I was the type of child that tried to organized adults, who gave away opinions for free and would do a buy one get one for free option with the free one, and found that anything I thought about and wanted to do – I could.  I was part of a new generation that was starting to be empowered by their parents rather than disciplined.  I learned that girls could do anything and I believed it.

It wasn’t until I was 25 and managed by a bunch of baby booming just achievers who would not be shown up types that I had my conviction squashed.
(but I’m not bitter) I had a good job and obligations and as much as I wanted to walk away from the job I decided to apply my stubborn streak and hold out for the win.  What I lost ended up changing the next decade of my life.

At eighteen our convictions are hills from which we look;  at forty-five they are caves in which we hide.                      

F. SCOTT FITZGERALD, “Bernice Bobs Her Hair

I now work primarily with a Generation Y crowd.  They certainly believe in their convictions, they believe others care and want to know their thoughts, they have platforms all over (Facebook, YouTube, iTunes, etc) to share their energy and they succeed in a mannerism like no other generation before them.  Just being in the environment has recharged my convictions, my passion, my personal energy.  This is a place where I have received more than a paycheck is personal payback for my work.

I am at a point of personal dilemma with my work.  I have an obligations to execute a plan of action which will impact the future of my office in Omaha.  I own the responsibility for the influence as this decision; I am the authority on the recommendation.  I’ve presented, hit a wall.  I regrouped and reassessed my audience and represented and hit another wall.  I feel so strongly I just can’t let it go.  I struggle with the thought that maybe I’m blinded by the facts with my own passion (or insert pride, or ego).  How far am I willing to go for my belief?

I wonder how many others have these internal struggles of their own?  When to we succeed to another’s recommendation and step back?  What is my obligation to my company to give it my all and again face the wall with a new approach and stand true in my beliefs.  I struggle and seek insight.

How convicted are you?

Cheers, Michelle

2 thoughts on “How Convicted Are You To Your Passion?

  • I think I’ve had a City Slickers moment. One thing. I’m still trying to sell myself and earn my job and that’s my mistake. I own this job already; it’s mine until I choose not to have it or they deem someone else a better fit. My decision is about doing what they expect me to do. What I need to get more comfortable with is knowing when to let go to to the team. To know that the group’s opinion is the best and they have heard and considered my expertise. I still struggle with the fact that I am in an office that none of our leadership team has seen in over a year and I should *know* what is best. I have to give in to the fact that they are in an office that I only see 4 times a year and I can’t possibly know all the details they are factoring in beyond what I’ve presented.

    I have the best friends and network. Thank you Steph 😀 I really appreciate the perspective and the tool to focus like a laser on what decisions are mine.


  • When you’re passionate about your job and excellence and your life and beliefs, you’re going to have these moments. I wouldn’t say I encounter those conflicts every day, but frequently enough that I recognize the feelings.

    Here’s the thing, and it can be a tough thing to swallow – you own one decision a day, and all the rest belong to your employer. That sounds bad, but it’s not – your employer hires you and pays you because they believe in your judgment and your professional skill, and they pay you to excercise that judgment and skill on their behalf.

    The one decision? Am I getting paid enough to go to work today. All the rest are theirs, at least til you turn it off at night.

    I know some people will find that terribly depressing, but it frees me – it’s not ABOUT me. It’s not MY outcome. It’s “theirs”, or “ours”, in the business sense.

    So, my obligation and my passion has to be about being fully committed. I’m fully committed to recommending and selling the right thing to my company, but when it comes right down to it, sometimes they’re going to need or decide to do something else. When that happens, I have to state my reservations – and then I have to fully commit to executing their decision. What that usually means is that my reservations show up in the project as the risks and issues we have to mitigate, but they don’t pay me to hold back because we’ve got risks and issues – they pay me to find some way to successfully execute the collective corporate judgment.

    I guess what I’m saying is that you have to mentally commit your passion to every task you undertake, whether it’s YOUR personal choice or not. That’s not to say you won’t have conflicts, or days you go home and throw things. You’re passionate. But remember – they’re paying you to direct that passion towards corporate success, and that’s your obligation to deliver.

    It’s not a compromise. It’s really just remembering that it’s not always up to you, but whether it’s your choice or someone else’s, they’re paying you to commit and deliver.

    I did say one decision, but there are really two that are yours. The first is “am I getting paid enough to go to work today?” That’s better stated as “am I still able to do my job even though I’m not nuts about the specific things I have to do today?”

    The second is “Are they asking me to do something that violates ME?” Is it unethical, or illegal? There’s a line in there where it stops being a difference of opinion and becomes an ethical issue – and once they cross THAT line, we’re back to decision one.

    When you can’t commit and deliver, even when you don’t agree, it’s time to grab a box and pack the desk.