Do you have to be a passionate developer?

Well, I mentioned on my about me page that I am self confessed passionate developer, I even named my business Passionate Development. However I’ve been thinking to myself, what does it mean exactly by passionate. Well now that I have some time to do more thinking, I will try to unravel my own thoughts on being passionate developer. I want to start of, by answering the question, if you are a developer:

I want to firstly say, I know this is a controversial and I might sound contradict myself here, but my answer would be:

I used to ask myself - why would you want to work in something that you are not passionate about? Well, turns out to be there are lots of different reasons.

One good reason is, you do it for the money, you do it to put the food on your table. That doesn’t sound too exciting, does it? Well yeah, it doesn’t but that’s a very legitimate reason of taking development as career / job option. You can earn good money being a good developer (although you are not necessarily be passionate about it) and when you are at home you can go about doing your own hobby or just chill out with your mates and your family. I can’t see anything wrong with that.

Being almost burnt out myself, I now see the wisdom of treating development just like a job. You see, there’s a downside of being passionate about something and that is, you can easily being consumed by your passion and start to neglect other things that are important in your life.

Well, why the heck you want to be passionate then? Are there any benefits then being passionate? And again that question, what exactly is a passionate developer? Well, hopefully I can formulate my thoughts on those questions later.

My point from this post is, if you are a developer but your heart is not in it – it’s ok, don’t feel bad, however I want to ask this, why not give up development and pursue the things that you really like?