Follow your passion?
I think I've said this before but I don't mind saying this again. You know how a lot of motivational articles and "experts" online keep advocating the idea that if you do what you love as work, money will surely follow. Or that when you're doing something that you love, you wouldn't care so much about money?
You know, the people who come up with quotes such as, "Pursue your dreams, and don't care about the money" or "Work for the job you love, and you'll eventually feel happy". Even good ol' Confucius said, "Choose a job you love, and you'll never have to work a day in your life".
You know what I think? I think that the people who came up with these ideas either have a very priviledged background (in that their family is rich in the first place) or that they are already so good in their field (perhaps the top player or something) that money has already become irrelevant to them.
To be painfully honest, you don't have time to be idealistic when your situation forces you to be pragmatic instead. As much as I love my job currently, when the bills come and when I have to fork out money to pay all the loans and bills, I can't help but wonder if a satisfaction with job can overcome the limitations in salary. What I'm getting, while not terribly low, sits on the bottom end of average, based on asking all around and comparing and as much as I'm enjoying my work (so far) now, I can't help but wonder if I'm able to cope with all the payments and be able to save enough by the end of the day.
Money is after all a very important measure of success in society, and no matter how much you tell people your job rocks, once you unveil the pay people are undoubtedly going to judge you by the amount of money you're getting. Coupled with the fact that as a guy, if I'm looking for marriage I must be able to earn at least a little more if not equal with my life (don't talk about gender equality because we still live in an Asian society and that means you must pass the in-laws stage too) and as a son, I must be able to somewhat support my family too. Not to mention saving enough for the future. So money is definitely something that you cannot simply forgo when you're looking for a job.
Science says that money cannot buy happiness, in fact an increase in salary doesn't increase your level of happiness after a certain point, but having not enough to pay off the loans and bills is certainly a mood killer. Maybe that could be an interesting area of research. Would adults with loans repayment feel less happier than those without, if they're earning the same amount at the end of the day after the loan deduction.
So kids, idealism is not something that you can chase when you've just graduated from university and have tons of responsibilities like loans that you need to settle. If you don't have loans, that's great you can immediately start chasing your dreams but when you do, it's hard to dream about enjoying work or working your passion and stuff like that. Because life demands you to be pragmatic. Perhaps after 30 when you're more or less settled with life tat you can consider focusing on your passion but at least in our society, money is definitely an important factor when it comes to choosing a job.