Derek Sivers has actually summarized the book So Good They Can’t Ignore You by Cal Newport; so you might want to buy the book!
So the below is the ‘snippets’ from a summary.
The path to happiness – at least as it concerns what you do for a living – is more complicated than simply answering the classic question “What should I do with my life?”
When it comes to creating work you love, following your passion is not particularly useful advice.
The deep questions driving the passion mindset – “Who am I?” and “What do truly love?”-are essentially impossible to confirm. “Is this who I really am?” and “Do I love this?” rarely reduce to a clear yes-or-no response. In other words, the passion mindset is almost guaranteed to keep you perpetually unhappy and confused.
There’s something liberating about the craftsman mindset: It asks you to leave behind self-centered concerns about whether your job is “just right,” and instead put your head down and plug away at getting really damn good. No one owes you a great career, it argues; you need to earn it – and the process won’t be easy.
Put aside the question of whether your job is your true passion, and instead turn your focus toward becoming so good they can’t ignore you.
If you want to love what you do, abandon the passion mindset (“what can the world offer me?”) and instead adopt the craftsman mindset (“what can I offer the world?”).
Courage culture: a growing community of authors and online commentators pushing the following idea: The biggest obstacle between you and work you love is a lack of courage to follow your dream.
It’s dangerous to pursue more control in your working life before you have career capital to offer in exchange.
The downside of the passion mindset is that it strips away merit.
Great work doesn’t just require great courage, but also skills of great (and real) value.
If you want a mission, you need to first acquire career capital. If you skip this step, you might end up with lots of enthusiasm but very little to show for it.
Advancing to the cutting edge in a field is an act of “small” thinking, requiring you to focus on a narrow collection of subjects for a potentially long time. Once you get to the cutting edge, however, and discover a mission in the adjacent possible, you must go after it with zeal: a “big” action.
To maximize your chances of success, you should deploy small, concrete experiments that return concrete feedback. Explore the specific avenues surrounding your general mission, looking for those with the highest likelihood of leading to outstanding results.
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