I’ve been hearing this a lot lately. How do you find your passion? How do I find that thing or things that I really love and am passionate about. If I find this, will it give my life more meaning? Am I missing out on something?
Do you feel as though your life is plateauing and things aren’t as exciting as they used to be or you imagined they would be? Do you feel as though you’re on automatic pilot and don’t even appreciate the little things like you used? Is everything too hard so you pick the easy road? Are you watching others with envy as they take leaps into the unknown and go and search out what life has to offer while you merely watch? Whether you’re in your teens, 20s, 30s, 40s, 50s, 60s, 70s (you get the point – any age), it’s never too late to tap into the real you and find pockets of passion. But how do we find this passion and what really makes us tick?
Good question. I heard a great strategy to do just this the other day. Imagine back to when you were 10 years old. [Thanks Gretchen Rubin of the Happiness Project!] Now go ahead, take a few moments and look back. What were you doing? What make you excited? What were you so focused on that made your heart sing? What consumed you?
I’ve heard of trying to live like a child – ie live in the moment and just be, which is fine if you don’t work and have any responsibilities. Maybe you can have moments of child-like thinking that will give you moments of pleasure although probably not for too long. Tap into the emotion you recall back then and how it makes you feel now. I feel pure joy looking back at the simplicity of my life.
When I was 10 years old, my sister and I would play office – or ‘Judy’ and ‘Marie’ – to this day neither of us recall who was Judy and who was Marie – but that’s not the point. We played office and I had a kick-ass filing system and would cut up bits of paper and file them diligently in alphabetical order. My mother fills me in on details as she always thought this was amusing and perhaps a little odd. I was organised even back then and would ring my sister on my pretend hand phone begging her to answer the phone ‘Judy answer the phone…’ (or maybe it was ‘Marie answer the phone’). I loved chatting about anything and nothing and connecting with others and still do. In the winter back then I would shovel snow for money and ensure I did a super efficient job so our neighbours would want me back to repeat this exercise by the next snow fall. I would be there as soon as the snow hit to take advantage of getting to as many houses as possible ie maximise my audience. In autumn I raked leaves so my jobs had an element of variety. I played every sport going at school and was active and almost never sat around. I don’t recall telling my parents ‘I’m bored’ (I’m sure it must have happened periodically) but I ran from thing to think even at 10 wanting to try as many things as possible to see what they were about. Then I could also add this new knowledge to my repertoire and speak relatively intelligently from experience on the topic. I’ve always hated doing the same thing over and over and need to spice things up regularly to keep myself growing and learning. This yearning for order extended to the garden and it made my brain calm. I know now that order and things having a place = pure contentment for me and this is when magic happens – all my ducks are in a row. I love to garden today and find it very therapeutic so the signs were there. I like to think I was destined to be an entrepreneur, who knows, but I know I take great pleasure in order and things having a place. It makes my brain less busy and calm. I’m still working out my ‘passion’ but I’m not so obsessed with finding that one thing. I’m going with the flow and letting my interests and opportunity lead me and it feels pretty great.
I’ve tapped into what is my genuine self [Thanks Kyle Cease – you feel like my best friend through your work and the Entrepreneurial Shift]. I am listening to my gut and what makes my heart sing and I’m taking the road less traveled because I can and it’s fun. If it scares me, I’m in. If it’s new, I’m in. If it’s positive and makes me feel great, I’m in. I’ve removed negative energy (as much as possible) from my world and it feels wonderful. I’m in.
So do I know my passions now? Maybe. I know that I love to read and learn and grow – I’ve been ordering 2-4 books a week on-line lately – I’ve just signed up to Audible.com and this is my night time ritual without fail. I joined an over 35s women soccer team even though I’d never played a game of soccer in my life (I only watched my boys from the sidelines) and I love it. I love being around like-minded people and interacting and working sh*t out. It’s inspiring and fulfilling and living. This is me and my next project is a book I’m working on… more on that later.
Find your passion… and don’t put pressure on yourself. Don’t judge or criticise just listen to your gut and go for it. Have fun searching for what it might be and get back to living and shaking things up. Geez it feels great when we shake things up!