All you need is love – and $75,000 a year…

Published by Richard Hare on

…a level above which people tend not to be any happier, according to a long but fascinating post at You Are Not So Smart entitled “The Overjustification Effect“.

“The Misconception: There is nothing better in the world than getting paid to do what you love.

The Truth: Getting paid for doing what you already enjoy will sometimes cause your love for the task to wane because you attribute your motivation as coming from the reward, not your internal feelings.”

This applies equally to being paid poorly as is does to being paid well. I remember the frustration I felt spending three years at the bottom end of the music business with little to show for it. This frustration prevented me from feeling fulfilled by work I enjoyed.

One of the comments references Steve Jobs’ exhortation:

“Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do.”

Note that he didn’t say “do what you love”.

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1 Comment

Sara · January 11, 2012 at 8:45 am

Excellent piece, I completely agree! Money ruins everything and you certainly can’t control passion or drive with financial carrots.

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