Have you ever noticed how people look when they talk about their passion? Their eyes light up, their faces look animated and their bodies become charged with an energy you can’t ignore. Their passion transports them right in front of your eyes and, for a brief moment, you are transported with them.
Passion is a hard thing to resist. It is the energy of creative enterprise and the fuel that drives us to take risks and leave our comfort zones. It enables us to see a way forward when others see only obstacles. A life without passion is pointless monotony, a series of days merging relentlessly with little real meaning. Repetition of the ordinary without the fire of adventure.
Today I met a man whose passion transports him. He was another tutor I had to hurry out of my room because he was running overtime. He was animatedly discussing an issue with one of his students and hurriedly gathered his things when he realised the time. ‘It’s just maths, you know,’ he told me by way of an apology as he moved past. ‘It’s just so exciting!’
I laughed and said, ‘Not for me, I’m about the words baby!’ But I loved how the joy and excitement for his passion pervaded his entire being. I feel that way when I talk about writing.
We should all allow ourselves that feeling or, at least, the opportunity to explore our world so we can uncover our passion (or passions). When I mentor people, we frequently discover the key to their passion lies in the activities they loved as a child. For me, as an avid reader and rarely seen without a book in my hand when I was a child, it’s no surprise that my passion is words and writing.
For some people, their passion is not so obvious and that’s when I encourage the explorative approach. That is, if something grabs your attention, no matter how random or silly you think it may seem to someone else, move towards it. You see a flower arranging course offered at a local florist shop – enroll. You watch a television interview with an entrepreneur in another industry and they are giving a talk in your town next week – book a ticket. You’ve always wanted to learn belly-dancing – sign up for a class.
Your passion won’t be revealed to you until you allow the space for it to show up. You cannot uncover your passion by being passive. Passion is the opposite of passive and requires you to move, to extend yourself in new directions, to learn and to get uncomfortable. Inhibitions strangle passion and must be let go of. Instead you must allow yourself to be absorbed in the moment, to the exclusion of what is around you and to the exclusion of what others may think or believe of you. Your passion is wholly and solely about you and you alone.
So go out and find it.