“Have you discovered your passion?”
That’s not a bad question. It’s just that it can be misleading. We have this expectation that our passion is discoverable — like some gold nugget buried in the bank of a river.
A better question might be, “what’s next today?” People become fat, one bite at a time. We become adults, one day at a time. And we grow into our passion moment by moment.
It’s not always easy to see that light at the end of the tunnel because that’s not an immediate strategy. So I suggest we use those small candles in our possession to illuminate the next step. What should you be doing today?
These 7 tips suggest that your passion is closer than you think. For starters…..
- Get passionate. Looking for your passion never works if YOU aren’t passionate. As kids, when my sister and I would say “we’re bored”, our caretakers would say, “No, you are boring.” Their point was that boring people are easily bored. Interesting people find plenty to feed their curiosity. If you can’t find your passion, maybe it’s time to amp up your passion for living. Folks who live their lives with no passion resemble the movement of the walking dead. The more passionate you are, the more likely your passion will show up.
- Be open to trying new things. If you don’t try on a piece of clothing, you’ll never know if it’s a good fit. When winching at the food on the plate, our parents would make us try it – once. At times our suspicions were confirmed, and other times we were pleasantly surprised. So when you see something you might like, pursue it until you know it’s not worth taking any further. That’s not wasted time. And it actually creates more options to sample. You are developing the ability to pursue the things that intrigue you and bypass the rest. The immediate side effect is that you are becoming more interesting.
- Make midcourse adjustments. General Eisenhower, in referring to battle, said, “plans are useless, but planning is essential.”
- What are you doing that you need to do more of?
- What are you doing that you need to do less of?
- Who should you involve?
- What should you stop doing?
- What should you start doing?
- Cross-pollinate. Think outside the box. This illuminates parts of the brain that have been dormant. It’s impossible to know what you don’t know. Ah-ha moments don’t happen by staying in our ruts. Sometimes, to our amazement, we discover what we weren’t even looking for – a sudden glimpse of the obvious!
- Avoid impulsiveness. It’s not necessary to buy the first things you see just because it’s different or you like it. I’ve tossed down money more than once for a training seminar that caught my attention, only to put it on the shelf – unused. Walk away, create some space, and see if it still warrants your choice or involvement. Taking risks is not a bad thing, but throwing caution to the wind is not always the best strategy. What will this decision look like tomorrow? Next week? Next year? Don’t think “resume.” Think “epitaph.”
All the things on our continuum of choices go from vital——————-silly. From the end of your life looking back, where along that line would you place the decision you are making?
- What problems does it solve?
- What solutions does it provide?
- How and where does it add value?
“Your vocation is where your greatest passion meets the world’s greatest need.” Frederick Buechner
- Beware of keeping score. Becoming the best can be toxic. Growing into your best is transformational. Keeping score can erode passion. Those that are “better” is a never-ending list. It takes our focus off what we really want.
“The only person you should compare yourself to is the person you where yesterday.”
Your goal is to be a better version of who you are. Keeping score gets you looking over your shoulder instead of at your heart.
- Check in with yourself. Each day take time to reflect.
- Take time for closure – as you look backward
- Take time for recalibration – as you look upward
- Take time for envisioning – as you look forward
Stay passionate about life and your passion will show up. Get enthusiastic about every step you take. You’ll be walking right into that passion. Your passion is not some far off destination. It’s an everyday adventure.
It’s closer than you think.