Here you are sitting in a stuffy office, from which you are already sick, and dreaming about how someday you will flush out of this cage like a new-born butterfly towards your real vocation.
Around such a surplus of motivators and coaches that there is not a single place or moment, where and when they are not talking to you about your uniqueness from all sides. “Work should be a pleasure!” They say. "You are capable of anything!" And you believe. Shouldn't you?
Calm down, butterflies.
In the modern world it has become incredibly fashionable to “look for yourself”. Have you lost yourself? If, due to certain negative circumstances, you suddenly lost memory, then everything is clear - “look for yourself” through special techniques and medicaments under the supervision of a qualified doctor. But if you don't suffer from amnesia or a split personality, then who are you going to look for?
You “found yourself” at the very moment you were born. When you appeared in this world and felt the first emotion, heard the first thought, and then the inner voice. You come to this world as a full-fledged person with your character, ideas and hopes, talents and weaknesses. You are a full-fledged person with a name, living on a planet next to billions of such personalities. And none of you are "lost."
Are you unique? Of course! As the others. Every person is unique. No matter how alike we look, no matter how similar our habits, desires and fears are, we will never repeat each other. Even your closest friend can love something that makes you disgusted or offer ideas that you don’t understand.
But not everyone sees in the uniqueness only the distinctive features of each individual person. Some try to sell this uniqueness convincing you that with all your talents you are capable of everything and you shouldn't waste your time on anything that doesn’t bring you pleasure. Because, you are unique! “Find yourself and find the vocation you were born with!”
Let's take it in order.
A man is really capable of anything he can imagine. But no need to deceive yourself, immediately putting on a superman costume. Each person has certain talents, something is easier to him than to others. And something is not. Some people think faster, others draw better. One can easily construct and build a house, and the other saves human lives by wearing a surgeon's uniform. Or a fireman's. This does not mean that the artist could not become a doctor, and the surgeon - an engineer. Nor does it mean that in another area they will be as successful as in the one where they have already revealed their potential. Having set a global goal, you must first sit down and honestly assess your readiness to achieve this goal. Most likely, you will need a lot of time to gain new knowledge, to develop skills and experience. And even painstaking work does not mean that you will become an expert in a completely new field, one that you have not been given before.
Oh, and where do these ambitious goals come from in you: leave the office and go on a world tour, quit the bank and become a fashion designer? Ah, did the coaches tell you that work should be extremely enjoyable? Well, since the coaches said, then fine.
Vocation. Good thing you're trying so hard to find it. But do you understand exactly what it is?
Vocation is when you are very good at doing something that helps other people or the world as a whole. When the results of your work make a definite contribution to the area in which you have “revealed” yourself. No, this is not a free schedule or cloudless days, when you are always in a good mood. This is a serious (real) job, as a result of which certain problems or needs are solved. You can intuitively understand how better to design a residential area in which hundreds and thousands of people will then safely and comfortably live. Or you can easily find a common language with people and are able to educate and support them. Maybe you can solve a complicated detective case, help a company avoid bankruptcy, or sell a square wheel. Or you were born a master of words and are able to convey cognitive history, feelings and experience in your works, inspiring more than one generation of your readers.
You won't necessarily like what is so easy to you. But the results of your work can contribute to progress in a particular industry, can heal human bodies and souls, help them, guide them or cleanse the world and make it safer and kinder. And all because something is easier to you than to others. That's what vocation is.
What is a dream job then?
This is such a magical place where you like everything, you always get enough sleep, get on well with your colleagues, do not worry about deadlines, fulfill all your duties with pleasure, get a lot of money and never get tired.
Oh, I forgot to say – this place doesn't exist.
Wherever you work, whatever you do, you will not always like everything. Sometimes it will be difficult to get up in the morning, sometimes it will not be possible to find a common language with colleagues or superiors. You will hate some responsibilities and try to put up with accountability and wait for the holidays like we all do. Not every day, you will start and finish with a smile. And it will always seem to you that somewhere is definitely better.
But the secret is to do what you personally see the point in. It will not always turn out well the first time and you will not always be happy with yourself and the results. Find something that will be important for you to bring to the end and with a high-quality result. It doesn't matter if it is your real vocation or your own vision of the “dream job”.