In reading the many, many articles about finding your passion and making a living doing what you love, it can be really frustrating for those who either don’t know what their passion is or feel that they can’t really make a living following their dreams. In my opinion, finding your passion isn’t really about finding a profession that you love and making a life choice to follow that dream, although it would be nice to be able to do what you love every day. In truth, I think we all have things that we are passionate about, and that with this passion, we can make the other parts of our lives work for us.
Purpose and Passion
Purpose and passion are two words on which I believe people place a great deal of weight. We make the words heavy, mysterious and a bit too serious. Purpose isn’t some magical ideal that needs to be found or else you’ll live a half-life. Purpose is about finding your true authentic self and setting goals to live in a way that honors those goals and ideals. Similarly, passion is also misunderstood. Many people believe that in finding their passion, they will feel an intensity and fervor about each thing that they do, every minute of their lives. True passion can also feel like a rightness. A soft “yes” when you think about what makes you tick.
Don’t Get Caught Up In The Shoulds
In trying to establish what our purpose and passions are, we are often put up our own roadblocks, about what is possible, our past failures and making decisions on what seems the “right thing to do.” We mistakenly think that our passion and our purpose need to be something that other’s find socially acceptable. We get caught up in the “shoulds.” You “should” finish this program, you “should” take that new job. With the shoulds, it makes us second guess both our purpose and our passion. But how do you find what you’re passionate about and incorporate that into your life?
Practice Good Self-Care
For many people, the start of finding your true passion is to practice good self-care. Listen to your body, spend time with yourself and nurture your spirit. Taking the time to think of what’s important to you and what you actually like to do, regardless of what others think. Become aware of your surroundings, explore your environment and take note of what excites you. It may be something you can translate into a career or it may just be recognizing the true joy you get spending time with your children or reading a good book.
Go Back To Your Childhood
What did you love to do as a child? Think about what your favorite activities were and how they made you feel. If you had a passion for dance or art when you were young, try taking classes as an adult. Go back and re-read some of your favourite books. Staying true to who you were and are is a great way to discover what your purpose needs to be for YOU.
Instead of rushing headfirst into a discovering what your purpose and passion are, try take small steps when you embark on the journey of self-discovery. Finding your passion can be a series of small yeses and no’s that help steer you in the right direction. If you feel resistance on your journey, stop for a moment and dig a bit deeper to see what’s blocking your way. What makes something feel like a yes versus a no.
Don’t Be Afraid To Take A Risk
There comes a point when we have to stop thinking about what we love and actually do something about it. Go ahead and challenge your fears and step out of your comfort zone. Get the support of friends and family and remember that nothing is ever written in stone. If you try something and realize it isn’t what you love to do, stop, regroup and start again. You’ll be happy you did.
When you are able to find your purpose, and the things in life that you are passionate about, you may be able to translate them into a career choice and you may not. But with the newfound sense of purpose, you will be able to experience a joy and peace in your life that will permeate into all other parts of your life, allowing you to feel truly fulfilled.