Careers vs job: following your passion

According to J.D. Roth in his article,  The Difference Between a Career and a Job:

What is the difference between a career and a job? Trent at The Simple Dollar recently suggested the following dichotomy:

  • A job is something you do simply to earn money; a career is a series of connected employment opportunities.
  • A job has minimal impact on your future work life, while a career provides experience and learning to fuel your future.
  • A job offers few networking opportunities, but a career is loaded with them.
  • When you work at a job, you should do the minimum without annoying the boss. When you’re in a career, you should go the extra mile, doing tasks beyond your minimum job description


I agree in part but sometimes depending on life circumstance, there are individuals who are unable to establish a career, however as long as they work hard at what they do and contribute back to society in some way then what’s the difference?

For me, the main difference that must be noted is that a career should be something you have a passion for, not simply just a 9-5 to pay the bills, where you can see yourself doing years down the road leading up to retirement.

For example, my current job is my career. I have always had the military somehow connected to me and working at the federal agency: the National Archives, gives me the opportunity of following my lifelong passion in serving my country. Coupled with being in the Army Reserves I feel a sense of fulfillment that no other job could possibly give me.

Now, I have worked “jobs” before such as a salesclerk at a family owned movie rental store and was a graduate assistant with the Political Science Department and then with the Industrial and Technology Education School at Indiana State while pursuing my Masters’.  However, at each job I’ve always gave 200% and made my time there as enjoyable and productive as possible.

We may not always get what we want, whether that be romance, finances, or jobs; but, in the end we make do with what has been given to us because folks…..we only have but this one life and we gotta make the best of it while we’re here.

“Life consists not in holding good cards but in playing those you hold well.”  Josh Billings

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