Valentine’s week is a great time to think about love. I wonder how many individuals truly love their jobs. Statistically we know that Americans spend 80% of their waking lives working, so doesn’t it make sense that we find work we love?

Are you fired up and excited about going to work every day? Do you care that you’re making a difference? Feeling passionate about your achievements? Committed to delivering superior results? If you can’t say YES to these questions it is time to re-assess where you are now and determine where you want to go.

Passion is the key to career satisfaction. Discovering and following your passion will reawaken your senses. You’ll feel more alive. Be more engaged and enthusiastic about going to work. You’ll want to hold yourself to a higher standard. Making a difference will matter.

Here’s two exercises to get started:

Inventory your Interests  Increasing your job satisfaction could be as simple as discovering your preferred areas of interest. Sydney Fine land the research team that developed the Dictionary of Occupational Titles fell into three categories: data, people, and things. Practitioners quickly recognized a four category: ideas. So ask yourself if I could have any job and choose activities working with data, people, things or ideas, which one or two would I choose?

Map your Career Highs Look at your career using a timeline. Then plot periods of extremely high and low satisfaction in your job. Reflect on these peak periods to collect insights to help you determine factors that contributed to and restrained your success and satisfaction.

A percentage of you that complete one or both of these activities will be successful in getting your career back on track. Others may benefit from talking to a friend, mentor or career coach to help you fully explore your career options and create an actionable plan that ignites your passion. Next time we’ll dig into exactly what we mean when we talk about passion.