Of course, having passion for something (or someone!), generally speaking, is a very good thing. It motivates us to get out of our comfort zone and do stuff, it offers us PURPOSE. And that’s a lot more important than just finding your passion, because passion sometimes is just a very intense emotional storm which can go away if not nurtured properly and not being given a direction (aka not transformed into PURPOSE).
But first things first. Before experiencing that feeling of having a purpose in your project/career/business/relationship/life etc., you first know to get crystal clear on what makes you a passionate person.
A lot of people already know where their passion is, this post is not for them.
I wrote for the people who are feeling drifted, like they go in life without a sense of direction, who often feel like they are living someone else’ s dream.
I used to be that person. I used to go after a lot of things that were supposed to give me a sense of accomplishment: studying a “profitable” topic in my university years, choosing a “safe” job, putting a lot of time and effort into my corporate finance career so that I be promoted (I actually got to be the CFO of a big multinational company at only 29 years old! — now, thinking about it, that’s kind of crazy), building a business in a “safe” area like accounting because I thought this was the only thing I could do (and being totally bored for the whole 3 years until I finally decided to exit that business) etc.
But wait! Before you think something like “Hey, that’s easier said than done”, I want to tell you that I am here to help you do that. So, if you feel like you somehow lost the contact with your true self and you want to remember what are you passionate about, if your feel that your career/project/business it’s not going like it was supposed to and wonder if it was the right one to pursue, if you are “stalking” people who seem so fulfilled in their lives and are so curious to know what they are doing differently, if you constantly wonder if this is all there is to life, then you should definitely read further.
Grab a pen and some paper, go in a quiet place and do some brainstorming. Please write down ALL your thoughts and answers, even if some of them don’t seem too feasible to you right now. The purpose is not to find your next career area, but to get a clear picture of what possible directions you may go. So here we go:
Take your time and try to think in specific terms like what you loved doing at 5 years old or when you first went to school or as a teenager. What were the activities that could keep you busy for hours? For me it was listening to stories and, later on, reading books. I remember one specific spring holiday, when I was 12 years old and for 2 weeks I just stood in bed and read. (it may sound pretty lame for a 12 years old, but it felt sooo darn good! I wish I’d still had time to do this now!).
Let’s say it is a rainy Saturday afternoon, all your chores are done, you go and make yourself a coup of coffee or tea, sit at your desk and you open your computer and go online to read something. What would you look for? What websites would you visit? What would captivate your attention? What subjects would interest you the most? Or, if you enter a bookstore (I LOVE bookstores!), what section are you drawn to first? Maybe is that section on art, or maybe is the top shelf where the knitting and quilting book are. Or maybe you go straight to the section on marketing, or maybe personal development. The question here is: WHAT PULLS YOU?
Is it baking, watercolor painting, playing an instrument, knitting, coding, child psychology, how to grow an online business? What area/subject do you want to know more about?
Fear of failure is one of the most common causes of not taking action and doing more of what we want to do. So, if you had a waterproof no-failure hat that you wore every day, what would you do? What would you start? Is it a blog? Would you write a book? Or maybe try to inspire people by public speaking? Don’t censure yourself, sky is the limit. The goal here is not to write down a list of the most feasible things you can do, but just to brainstorm everything you can and get ideas out of you head and onto paper.
Out of all your conversations with people, what kind of topics make you feel emotional and you could talk about them for hours? For me is education, empowering people and online entrepreneurship, these subjects make me look so engaged and passionate when talking about them (people notice this and I also feel it).
So set aside 30 minutes for yourself today, grab a pencil and some paper and answer in writing to these 5 questions. Have patience with yourself if the answers are not popping out immediately, try again tomorrow, just don’t give up. You owe this to yourself.
Originally published at www.passioncreativitybusiness.com on January 2016.