Pursuing Your Passionjen January 19, 2012 Article
What does pursuing your passion mean to you? People talk about it all the time, but what does it really mean? Does it mean quitting your day job and turning your love of crafts, photography or food into your career? My answer would be, maybe. It’s very important for everyone to follow their passion and do what they feel inspired to do, but that may or may not mean turning it into a business. Maybe you like your day job, or you need the health benefits. If so, keep your job, but make sure you have some inspirational passion infused in your life as well.
No matter what you do in this life, one of the most happy-making things you can do is follow your passion. Following your passion for work or for hobby helps us all tap into our gifts and talents. The act of following our passion allows us to gain skills in areas we’re already strong in and pushes us to become better, which can then be shared with the world. In this way, we begin to create a body of work that will grow and develop over our lifetimes. Keeping yourself engaged in meaningful work (hobbies apply here too) keeps your mind nimble as you age and allows you to feel that your life has great meaning and purpose.
There are some people who may not be ready to pursue their passion just yet. If you’re familiar with Maslow’s Hierarchy of needs then you know that there are some basic needs that must be addressed before anyone can move forward with their passion. Those needs are; having basic food, shelter, safety, love, friendship and so forth. Once you have your basic needs met then you’re ready for self-actualization and some passion-following in your life.
Here are some reasons for pursuing your passion:
Feeling happiness and fulfillment:
When you take the time to value your talents, giving your time and resources to your passion, you will find some of the greatest bliss you could hope for. Some people have a passion in childhood that they give up on, like skate boarding, cross-stitching or collecting vintage dresses. It’s one thing to quit because you’ve lost your passion for it. It’s another to quit because it seems impractical. It’s always practical to nurture and develop your passion paid or unpaid because it’s tapping into your authentic self and growing that part of you.
Be an expert:
If you take the time to pursue your passion, what you’re essentially doing is developing your skills and gifts—this leads to expertise. Who doesn’t want to be an expert about something? Especially if it’s an area you’re already interested in naturally. As you develop your skills, more and more people will seek you out to advise them on your area of expertise, which could lead to countless new opportunities.
It’s hard to know what is possible when you begin to follow your passion. With passion comes energy, excitement and motivation which can lead to synchronicity that you cannot imagine until you get there. In other words, if you become an expert from following your passion, the world opens up for you with people and new opportunities. Maybe even career opportunities.
A body of Work when the body no longer works:
OK, this is a bit of a stretch, because probably lots of people’s bodies will work for a long time, but you’ll get the gist of what I mean. As we get older we have more time to reflect on what we could have done. If you’ve tested and tapped into your passion you don’t have to look back with regret when you may no longer be able to do the things you’d wished you done when you were younger. You can look back at the legacy you’ve created and feel good about. An added bonus is that in many cases the passion and expertise you’ve exerted will help others and will bring joy to the world. You can live with the satisfaction of a life well lived.
So how about you? What is your passion? Do you know? Are you following it? This is just one of the many things that will be explored in the e-course that my friend Jena and I have developed called, The Catalyst. In this course we look at self-care, time management, stress management and how to get where you want to go. We also help you break down the steps involved with making a change toward your passion.
“Nothing great in the world has ever been accomplished without passion.”
– Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel
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