Everywhere you look there is a book, article or blog urging you to follow your passion. Following those are promises to help you with their version of opening the secret door. I’m here to save you some money. Before I do though, I want to let you know that following your passion, which is often coupled with “purpose” comes with no guarantees, money or otherwise. It does have a place in your life, you just need to be clear what it is.
Now for the big reveal. Drum roll please. Your passion is whatever seems too big, too preposterous and too “out there” and has been trying to get your ear for some time. It’s the voice inside you, the activity or talent that you brush off as no big deal. Yeah, that thing – the writing or singing or needlework or teaching or healing or advising or analyzing or producing. Or, or, or.
Passion Leaves Clues
The invitation to follow your passion makes it seem like a one shot deal, but it is most often a series of steps. It begins with a restlessness and a desire for something more. Not more external stuff, but a way of bringing more of yourself into the world. Your talents and your gifts. Many of us are unaware, underestimate or dismiss what those talents are.
Since I was old enough to put pencil to paper and had enough words to express myself, I have been writing. As a child, lacking money, I turned to my imagination to create stories to give as birthday presents to siblings. I have written poems and given them to friends as pieces of encouragement and to my own children to mark special occasions. I have written for weddings and funerals. And, within business I write letters, memos and newsletters. However, for many years, I never thought of myself as a writer. I am just a person who writes.
A quest for a more fulfilling life
Over the last few years that changed. A lot has. I wasn’t looking for my passion, I only wanted a more fulfilling life. I had let some long- held beliefs go, released some ideas that no longer served me. What remained were holes that needed filling.
What did I do? I found a music event and volunteered. This combined two activities into one. Meeting new people and introducing some fun. One simple step. One of those inconsequential actions that later you see as a marker for before and after. A pivot point. Hardly recognizable in the moment.
During the event I was continually, and spontaneously, scheduled with the same person. We hit it off, found shared interests. Since there was no way our paths would intersect again I knew that if I wanted what I said I did, that bigger world, action was needed. So, I took a chance and suggested going for coffee after the event. I made a new friend. Nothing too earth shattering there, people do it all the time. Simple, everyday, right? Maybe. Yet we often ignore those chances the universe sends our way, never knowing what we said no to.
Saying yes to your intuition
Following my intuition, her friendship introduced me to a larger circle of people, ideas and ultimately, to myself. By venturing into the world, a new group of people emerged to support me. People on their own journeys of life creation. Supporting my quest. Not because it is the same as theirs, but because they know there is one. Surround yourself with people who share your idea of living fully.
It takes time to fully become. Uncovering, discovering and putting together all the parts into a complete version of you. We think of passion, especially these days, as a neatly tied package. Instead of a multi-layered, slow reveal.
Passion, purpose and creating a brave new you. The only life you are called to live is your own and there’s no time like now to start doing so.