It’s as simple as asking the right questions, and then listening to the honest answers.
Common themes are cyclical in the world of personal development, and a common theme that often finds itself in heavy rotation is the search for one’s passion.
The dictionary has a host of definitions for passion, but the one we are concerned with is, “any powerful or compelling emotion or feeling, as love or hate.”
As in, what brings powerful and compelling emotion or feeling to you?
Is it a grand quest that you feel needs conquering? Is it having lunch at that awesome Thai place down the street? And should that thing that is my passion be filling or emptying my bank account?
My shtick for personal development is all about asking questions, answering them honestly, and dealing with the consequences those answers drive you to take. So, let me set up the exercise I believe may help those stuck in frustration of being passionless. What are the questions you should ask to help you finally find your passion? These three should suffice:
1) What do you really want to do?
There are things that we love to do that after taking an honest look, we know we are not very good. There are things that we have mastered that chip away a piece of our souls every time we are forced to do it. Somewhere in between, are a hand full of things that you are capable of doing that you don’t completely hate that can sustain your mental wellbeing. Find a few of those and hold on to them as possible choices for your ultimate passion.
2) Who do you want to be?
Your favorite characters from books and movies tell a story about you. Oddly enough, you will gravitate to characters that are pretty much just like you (so you understand precisely the trials they are suffering) or some almost diametric reverse of you (because they can say, do, or be something that you can’t). Because these characters are a product of a creative process that maintains relevant and entertaining stories, these characters rarely change from book to book or show to show. Real humans can fall into character tropes, but they are not as easy to define, because real humans have a tendency to be fickle and random at the least opportune times possible. But you’re going to have to try, as you determine who the real you really is and if that person is ultimately who you want the world to see and believer you are.
3) How do you want to live?
Now that you have some idea of what that thing that can sustain your mental wellbeing is and who you want the world to see and believer you are, there is one important thing to always have in the back of your mind. Positive cash flow. Your standard of living may not directly align with your passion per se, but food, lodging, and clothing are basic needs that always need some addressing, especially if you feel your personal standard is currently lacking. If you find following your passion is not the most financially secure route you can take in life (and few are), that means you must maintain some ‘day job’ that can financially sustain the passion project. You are allowed to hate your day job, but it must pay the bills, including the cost of that passion.
Sounds simple and straightforward? Give it a try and let me know how well it is working toward following your passion.