What's your passion? |
Whether it comes up at a dinner party or in a job interview, this question often leaves many of us in stunned silence as we frantically try to figure out just what it is we enjoy doing.
Identifying and pursuing what we are passionate about is imperative to our success, both personally and professionally. Passion is what keeps us excited about and interested in our own lives; it is what gives us purpose and drives us toward reaching our goals. Sounds important, right? Then why is it that so many of us find it difficult to vocalize what we are passionate about?
If you feel like you've lost (or have yet to identify) your greater sense of purpose, or if you're just going through the motions to get from one day to the next, it's possible that your life is lacking passion. As kids, our passions are so clear-cut: you love school, feel strongly about your volleyball team, look forward to dance class every week or enjoy reading on weekends. Unfortunately, with the stress that accompanies our "always on" culture, day-to-day jobs and unending bills, errands and children's needs, it's easy to lose sight of those activities that spark your soul. When everyone and everything around you require our attention, it is easy to lose ourselves and forget that we should be taking time to find and do things that we believe in and make us feel excited—not just those things that pay the bills.
Of course, making time for those things we are passionate about is easier said than done—especially when we already have trouble finding time to grocery shop or put gas in the car. Consider scheduling some time for a little self-care, and ask yourself the questions below to identify a new passion. This process does not need to be a lofty endeavor; you don't need to quit your day job and make a career change to bring passion into your life. You can start small.
Time for a Heart-to-Heart
1. You've hit the lottery and money is no longer an obstacle. Now that financial constraints and salary requirements are a thing of the past, where do you work?
Be honest with yourself. Do not hang this decision on trying to impress friends and family or to beef up your LinkedIn profile. Instead, picture yourself getting ready for your workday and, instead of being filled with stress, anxiety or dread, you're feeling relaxed and motivated. Where might you be headed off to? Your dream job can tell you a lot about your own passions.
2. You've been given $1,000,000 to donate to a charity of your choice. What charity will you choose?
With the click of a button, you have the opportunity to make an extremely sizeable donation that could potentially change the lives of many. It is up to you what "many" refers to: Is it adults? Children? Plants? Animals? Determining what charitable cause is a high priority for you can reveal passions that you might not have been aware of. Consider getting involved with a local organization to learn more about what they do and see where the path leads.
3. You haven't been tempted to pick up your phone to check your inbox or social media for several hours. What have you been up to?
Identifying activities that hold your attention and interest will likely lead you to discover a passion or two. Whether it's whipping up a new recipe, spending time with your kids, volunteering, starting an interesting project at work, hiking a new trail or exercising with a friend, certain hobbies have the power to truly keep you living in the moment?
If you're having trouble answering any of these questions, here's one last tip: Be sure to adopt a positive mindset. If you already have it in your head that "finding my passion is too hard," you'll likely remain closed-minded and block out possibilities that might surface.