“Most of us go to our graves with our music still inside us, unplayed.” Oliver Wendell Holmes
Pursuing one’s ambitions can be a scary thing, which is why so many people work in jobs which provide little challenge or satisfaction. Those people usually stay in those jobs primarily because they provide financial security.
However, what would you do if money was not an object?
Would you pursue a different career, use your time differently, explore your talents that currently go without notice?
It’s the question that can guide us toward following our purpose and finding our passion and set us apart from everyone else because our passion is uniquely ours. It is what drives our energy and utilizes our talents.
Many times, we get “stuck” in a place where we are not pursuing what we are passionate about; we are just going through the motions. This is the place where life becomes mundane, boring and frankly, stifling.
We must ask ourselves if it’s our environment that is stifling our passion or do we stifle ourselves by letting fear stand in our way. The fear of failure, the fear of what others think of us and the fear of change can all be obstacles to following a journey that is rewarding and fulfilling.
The destination on this journey is an intangible place. It’s a way of living life as a message to the world that we are unique and we are living our story as we want it to be told.
It’s easy to settle and live with our own potential or we can live up to our potential. If you don’t know your passion, follow your purpose and it will lead you there.
Allow passion to become your focus and it will unleash your potential.
When I observe the people I admire the most I notice they all share one common ingredient. Individuals who are passionate about what they do stand out, achieve amazing results and have the ability to create a contagious excitement for life.
My grandmother first taught me about passion and purpose, not necessarily by her words but by her actions. She was a very talented lady who could do anything to which she put her mind. She graduated as the valedictorian of her high school class and was an administrative executive and an excellent philosopher. Despite her accomplishments, she preferred a simple life in the country where she could paint, garden and cook.
When her husband passed away in 2000, she talked about moving into the city. I knew she was acting on emotion rather than reality because she loved the home she had created. I didn’t want her to regret making a hasty decision.
I offered to stay with her for an extended period of time until she knew what she wanted and so she would not be alone. She began to lighten up almost the minute I moved in with her. I remember thinking to myself, “What is driving her happiness? Here’s one of the smartest and most talented ladies I have ever known, and she was restored because she now has more clothes to wash, another bed to make and more meals to cook.” That was her passion and purpose.
Not everyone’s idea of success and purpose is the same. A person who has successfully found happiness is a person who understands their purpose and lives it. They love what they do and do what they love.
However, all too often I have seen people not passionately pursuing their purpose life. I once had a great mentor explain this through a memorable analogy that continues to resonate with me today. Candles are meant to be lit. They are created for the very purpose of illuminating light. Sadly, most candles sit on shelves gathering dust, never doing what they were meant to do were meant to do.
Everyone has talents that can make a lasting impact. However, only a few utilize their talent to live up to their full potential. When an individual combines talent with their personal purpose it leads to a significant impact.
I saw this come to life at a conference when the keynote speaker asked for a volunteer in the audience to come forward and share with information about her employer with the audience. The high energy and enthusiastic speaker began to question the volunteer, and it quickly became apparent that she was not excited at all by her line of work.
Instead, her story pitch was very dry and boring lacking any sense of creativity. The speaker invested in her, asking questions and working hard to find that spark that could generate a story. Her “yes” and “no” answers were getting them nowhere. Finally, he kindly told her, “I think you may not be in the right position.” She was not passionate about her work and up until that point may not have even realized it.
It would be frightening to feel life has no purpose or direction, but finding excitement in life can change all that. Discovering passion is like finding a personal road map. When someone has direction, they feel motivated, inspired and so much more confident in what that next step should be.
Success is greatly determined by our ability to manage our mindset. Clearer decision making is established when managing and maintaining a positive outlook, allowing us to pursue maximum effectiveness.
Therefore, by building on the foundation of awareness, individuals can likewise embark on the exciting journey of pursuing their passion and purpose.