How do I describe passion? Maybe an analogy will help. You know those commercials of places to eat where they have some voiced or written statement that expresses that they include secret ingredients in your favorite meals?
They never come right out and say what is included in their list of ingredients, they just tell you their own tagline version. The truth is, even though we don’t know exactly what is included in the foods that make our taste buds pop, we don’t really care about what we don’t know.
Ah, but that’s the kicker, isn’t it? Those secret ingredients matter greatly! For without them, we wouldn’t enjoy those foods nearly as much as we do. Instead of descriptive words like amazing or out-of-this-world to express our enjoyment of those dishes, we would resort to less appealing adjectives such as okay, nothing special, or bland.
Let me ask you a question. Is your life bland? I suppose I should apologize for pulling out such a blunt sentence and potentially wounding you. However, tough medicine can do a great good for us; the bitter pill, although hard to swallow, can cause us to heal to our best potential.
Hold Up! Let Me Explain!
What I mean is that just like those favorite foods, we all have a secret ingredient within us. It is your passion. Let’s give a definition to the word passion in the sense that I am using it, for there are plenty of other definitions that could be assumed.
Passion: noun, a strong or extravagant fondness, enthusiasm, or desire for anything.
Your passion can be the pivotal link to aid you in many aspects of your life. It can affect you in a number of ways. Here are 3 ways passion can be a major contributor in your life.
As in the first motivational blog, we talked specifically about finding your talent(s). We discussed several key items (if you need to take a look, you can do so here). The point is that finding a particular talent could very well be linked to the things in life that you are passionate about.
For instance, your enthusiasm for the water may take shape into a career in the Navy or Coast Guard or even as a captain of an Alaskan crab ship. For me, it was writing. I was drawn to it. I took note of it fondly and even though I wasn’t the best reader growing up, something about it ignited my engines. Then, when I decided to write a novel when I was 15, I knew it was a giant leap, a chasm that seemed impossible to jump, but it was something I was determined to accomplish.
So, if you’re having difficultly with finding your talent(s), start by looking at what your passionate about. The things that excite you in life can be, no, should be, a great springboard into finding something that you truly enjoy doing. Then when you know what the driving excitement is, go after it with all your heart.
Talent and passion can go hand-in-hand. Plus, your passion doesn’t have to be a specific niche. That is important to remember. Imagine that you are passionate about helping others. All the lights come on inside of you when you exercise that activity.
What should you do as an occupation? There are tons of things! Possibly you could be a nurse, or a doctor. Let’s make it a little more interesting. Let’s say you love to work with your hands.
Maybe you could be a mechanic or work in construction. Let talent and passion tag-team your occupation and then you don’t mind going to work. In fact, you look forward to it! Sure, there will be days where you just don’t want to be there, but they should be few in number. Examining ourselves is key to understanding what we are to be doing with our one-and-only life.
Have you ever met people who were highly unhappy? Maybe it’s a coworker or a close friend or maybe even just an acquaintance that you had an unpleasant experience with in a particular setting. People who are constantly unhappy in their work environment need to evaluate their circumstance. It’s the same idea as the bland food we spoke about earlier.
People can put up with a lot in life. We can endure great suffering, even if that suffering is self-inflicted! People who are not happy, at any time, in their careers need to make a change. In life, we have the responsibility to change when we find our joy meter running low, or on empty. There is no need to go through life in a predicament where long-term loss of joy is acceptable.
Now, we must be responsible in the process. We certainly can’t be careless with the situation. If we haven’t found a job to replace the one we don’t enjoy, then we have to start looking. Notice that I say job, because if we are not working in an area where our talents or passions thrive, then we shouldn’t consider it a career. We must have a plan, and we must be willing to accept a few unknowns to complete the transfer.
Change can be hard, but change can also be very good. It can open new doors, new opportunities, and help us recapture lost joy in the process. I tend to speak of joy in the context of work because, let’s face it, work is a giant part of our life. It’s so huge!
Being willing to make changes occupationally, when necessary, is a card we must be willing to place on the table.
However, joy in other facets of our lives is important too. Our personal time away from work can be utilized in so many ways. Is your personal time an opportunity to pursue a different talent? It can be! There must be a plan, a number of steps that are actionable. As we make progress through those steps and we exercise well-regulated discipline, expect your joy to come alive.
This is where your passion shines brightest in your pursuits, especially if it happens to be aligned with your occupation. Take a look at the definition of vitality:
Vitality: Capacity for the continuation of a meaningful purpose or existence.
Your unique excitement over that particular activity associated with your passion is a continual flame, a constant heat, that continues to self-manufacture the will and drive to succeed.
The test of time is one of the longest, yet most revealing, axioms at our disposal. Time puts our passions and talents into a chamber of flame to refine them so that we can come out the other side and triumphantly proclaim: I know myself.
Passion will take our hard work, mix our meager will and fuel the strength to go on, even when the going gets tough. How can someone continue to work in their occupation year after year AND have high quality results? They are working within their passion.
That passion acts as continual gasoline in their motor to drive them to meet deadlines, make impact, and excel at their work. Make no mistake, when you are working within your passion, you will experience a sweet knowledge that will ring so true… I was born for this.
What a gift our passion is. To work in the field of our desires and excitement causes our joy to be multiplied, our life to be full and lived with purpose.
Your passion plays a pivotal role in ensuring that we live in accordance with who we are. Passion is an inward investigation into the activities that make us light up inside. Passion can mix with talent and not only bring true joy to our careers, but also help us up our game as we progress year after year.
The truly sad dilemma is someone not utilizing their talents or passion who go to a job they don’t really enjoy, in an industry that doesn’t excite them. Those individuals will one day look back and realize the tremendous opportunity they had and know they could have done so much better, lived so much happier, if they had first performed an introspective analysis.