“When I was 5 years old, my mother always told me that happiness was the key to life. When I went to school, they asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up. I wrote down ‘happy.’ They told me I didn’t understand the assignment, and I told them they didn’t understand life.” ― John Lennon
There are people who are born knowing what they want to do in their lives. They have a clear picture of what they want to spend their lives doing and what makes them feel complete. These people, since they know what they are meant to do, make great progress in their lives and live life to the fullest. However, million others who have no idea about their passion and spend all their lives looking for a meaning that most never get. This guide is dedicated to many such people who are trying to find passion in their life.
Here are a few tips that you can follow to get to know your true passion:
There are people who are born knowing what they want to do in their lives. They have a clear picture of what they want to spend their lives doing and what makes them feel complete. These people, since they know what they are meant to do, make great progress in their lives and live life to the fullest. However, million others who have no idea about their passion and spend all their lives looking for a meaning that most never get.
People are educated with an idea of getting a good job someday and living a happy life. This is not a bad option at all, but the problem occurs when even after getting a good job they often find themselves surrounded by unwanted feelings. Like other successful people, they also want to live a life with a motive or a goal that eventually makes their life worth living. This is one of the toughest phases to go through, when you are not exactly unemployed and have almost everything material, but can’t be happy and always feel a sense of incompleteness within you.
You find yourself looking for the ultimate purpose of your life, which can make you feel good or rather great about yourself. It is not difficult for some people to get to know their true passion. Most others have to bang their heads hard and ask the experts to enlighten them about their true selves. No wonder without getting to know your true passion you find it hard to live a content life (though life goes on somehow).
Tip 1 – Listen to your inner voice and read between the lines
There are times when even during busy working hours, you find yourself thinking about something that you love to do. Of course, you take up a job to pay up your bills, keep yourself busy, live under the illusion that you are employed and deserve the respect from others as someone who is not sitting idle at home.
The things that take you back to the memory lane can be the storehouse of your passions. You may find it hard to stay away from the latest book you have bought or love to resolve personal issues of your friends. The idea of your happiness is hidden among the things that you love to do. Finding your true passion is all about exploring all your likings and disliking after all.
Take a day off and sit in a corner with a pen and a piece of paper away from your commitments and worldly worries. Don’t plant yourself in front of your TV, and switch off your cell phone so that no one can interrupt you. Start jotting down things you love to do in your free time. It does not necessarily have to be something productive or with an idea of moneymaking. If it makes you happy, then it should find a place on the list.
Answer these questions to come face to face with your passion.
- What brings a smile on your face?
Imagine your happiness if you get to do the thing you like the most all your life. You would surely be on top of the world. It gives you immense happiness and a feeling of completeness. Make a list of things that make you feel good about yourself.
- What makes you lose the track of time?
There has to be something that simply makes you lose track of time. Even after spending hours you feel as if you have just started. Has there been anything of that sort?
- What do you daydream about?
It may be that you are one of those millions who do not really love their jobs but work to keep things going on or just because they don’t have a clear picture of their passion in life. When you daydream sitting in your cozy office, you imagine yourself doing things unrelated to your current job. Note down things you imagine doing and feel good about the whole scenario.
- What is that one thing that you would do without getting paid?
Each one of us has a list of things that they can do without expecting anything in return, this may be their life’s calling. It can be travelling places, taking care of stray animals or may be talking to strangers. Whatever it is, it has to be a part of your list.
- Is there anything that you don’t do due to your financials fears?
There may be something that you really wanted to do ever since you started doing things on your own (or considering job options) but couldn’t really give a shot to as you are worried about paying your bills and mortgage. This could hold your inner passion to pursue a life of your dreams.
Your answers to all these questions may unlock the door to your passion. Once you are done making a list of things that you love to do the most, prioritize them based on your liking for each. Try each one of your potential passions that you have mentioned on your list, so that you can really get to know your true love. The idea of living your dreams can turn into a nightmare if you end up making a wrong choice and make it your profession though it really does not define your passion. Start with the most fascinating thing on your list, something that makes you feel alive. If you can’t devote much time to it, than try it for a week or two in the beginning and see whether it is your true calling.
If you were good at introspection or self-analysis, you would come up with one or more things that you are passionate about, pursuing, which can even help you escalate your career to greater heights.
Tip 2 – Sneak a peek into your childhood to dig up the lost passion
You are so full of energy and positive vibes during your childhood that nothing really seems impossible. You want to fly, touch the stars, and live life as no one ever has. No doubt, this is the best time of one’s life. You do not really apply logical things to turn your dreams into reality since life seems like an open road. The moment youth steps in, you see yourself surrounded by endless fears and worries. Each day starts with a fear and ends with another one. All the dreams that you once had as a child seem to take a back seat or disappear as if they were never there. Responsibilities, problems and everyday troubles overshadow your dreams and life seems like an endless race for nothing. All your passions get lost in your routine work, which never makes you happy in true sense.
You have to invest a lot of time to get to know what you wanted to do in your childhood. No wonder you must have had a lot of dreams in life but something that always made your heartbeat go faster holds that special place in your life.
Here are a few tips that could help you unfold your passion hidden in the memories of your childhood:
- Find your true calling
It may be possible that you find countless things that you really loved to do as a child, but try to be practical since you can’t be vague about the whole idea. You can’t really be a doctor if you have not studied medicine as a course of your study. You may have a desire to become a singer or actor and if it is so then why not give it a shot now.
- Be realistic about it
You may not pursue engineering if you are already middle-aged and have not gone through the course of study. There is another aspect of it; the world of work today offers you many options if you could prove yourselves worthy of it. You do not have to be a scientist to invent something new, if you have the capability to draw everyone’s attention towards your latest discovery. However, you may have to think hard before actually trying something that seems out of the way.
- Take help of your loved ones
People who have always been there during your childhood can help you get connected with your true passion. All you have to do is to ask them, they could certainly remind you of things that held all your attention as a child before you actually pushed it to the back of your mind.
- Chase your passion no matter what
Once you are aware of things that you loved to do as a child, analyze if one or more of these still excite you. Never let your financial status be the reason of not following your dreams even if you have to wait long saving for it. Nothing could really stand between you and your passion, if you have the desire to turn it into a reality.
- Things that ignite your passion
There could be things that you always looked for in magazines and TV as a child. On your path to self-discovery, anything that ignites your passion could give you a link to your true passion in life. Dig deeper to get that one passion that brings out the child in you.
It is important that you take a shot at things that you were passionate about as a child. Things that did not make sense back then could actually be something that has started making a sense now. You can always transform your dreams into your passion or take it to another level turning it into your profession too. All the activities you liked, foods, events and your childhood role models could take you closer to your passion. You never know, it may turn into your full time profession and if that happened then you would be one of those few people who get to live their dreams in real life. Once you have a list with you, try all of these for a while to make sure you are on the right path.
There is nothing that makes you feel the way your passion. You feel energized, fascinated and thrilled; as if this is something that you are meant to do all your life. You don’t find it hard to make time for it, no one could really interrupt you and life seems full of possibilities.
Tip 3 – Come out of your comfort bubble to discover your true self
No one can really make progress in life unless they come out of their comfort zone. Your comfort zone has actually more to do with fears than comfort itself. As you grow up, you feel surrounded by countless fears that offer nothing but limitations in your life. You always feel safe and secure within your comfort zone since you feel your abilities best match your job or the kind of work you do without knowing the fact that there may be more opportunities for growth outside.
Fear of failure never lets you try anything new in your life, fear of acceptance keeps pulling you backwards and fear of change makes everything look difficult. You never express your love to a stranger as you fear not getting love in return, you have a fear of accepting the reality and fear of being alone does not allow you to take a chance with your choices. However, the reality is that all these fears instigate in your mind and are as powerful as you make them. These fears are baseless and serve no purpose in your life, so break free from your fears.
Step out of your comfort zone to get to know what you are passionate about; this may be the key to your passion. Take risks, in fact many of them as they always help you to know yourself better. You never know one of your fears could really turn out to be your passion or the task that you do may not be your passion but could get you closer to it.
Let us have a look at a few simple steps to that could help you come out of your comfort zone:
- Do what you are afraid to do
Sometimes you may get a kick doing something that you were always afraid to do. Once you start feeling great beating your biggest fear there is no looking back in life. The universe is made in such a way that at times all you have to do is to take an initiative to get things done. Do what you are afraid to do to know the real you.
- Plan beforehand
Don’t expect a miracle, plan things to come closer to your life’s calling. Make a plan to do things that you have always been avoiding all your life. Face your fears head on to experience new ways of life. You may begin with taking measurable risks in life.
- Be true to yourself
Never try to wrap your fear around a misconception. Accept that you feel insecure and scared to try new things in your life instead of tricking yourself with waiting the right time expression or you are not prepared yet.
- Bring back the memories
You must have had times in your life when you had broken some rules as we all do that. Try to recall how you really felt when you challenged your own fear or did something completely out of the way. You may find it inspiring to carry on with your search for your passion in life.
- Make new acquaintances without avoiding ambiguity
Try to read the biographies of the great people of the world to find inspiration. You will get new experiences, opinions and interests to enlighten you on your way to success. Almost all of us want to be certain in life and this is something that you can exploit to your advantage. Ambiguity paves way to new discoveries and those who make new discoveries always stand alone against the world.
Stepping out of your comfort zone could be difficult in the beginning but it would seem only easy if you keep reminding yourself of the positive outcomes of it. Things that you are afraid to do could actually be your life’s calling, you only need to say yes to new experiences in life especially those that scare you the most.
Tip 4 – Travel to arrive at your objective to know your passion
Almost everyone mentions traveling as their passion and those who are not aware of their passion in life can find an answer in travel. The idea to see new places is likely to enlighten your spirit. The whole idea of getting away from your busy schedule, seeing places, getting in you track pants to hike some mountains and meeting different people excites most all of us. The best part is that travel could actually be much more than fun, it may lead you to your passion in life.
A journey to a place makes you aware of the new ways of living, food, customs, lifestyle and some unknown facts about life, which can push you forward on your way to unlock your passion in life. You must have experienced the feeling that you get when you come back from your trip to a new place, you discover an altogether new ways of living your life.
You get attracted to it and sometimes even get mentally prepared to live a life like that since it has touched your heart but then again after weighing it on the scale of logical thinking you come back to the harsh reality of your own life that seems to offer you a secure if not exciting life. Another way of looking at it may reveal the fact that you are actually scared to come out of your comfort zone as you have gotten so used to it.
Let us have a close look at how travel could get you close to your passion:
- Educate yourself even more
Traveling not only comes with a lot of fun but also educates you about new horizons of life. You turn into a much more interesting and engaging person who has clarity of thoughts and innovative ideas.
- Develop an appreciation for different lifestyles
You come across a countless number of people during a small visit to a new place. You tend to feel love and respect for things you have never experienced before. You never know one of these things could pave way to realize your own passion in life.
- Sense of accomplishment
Traveling provides you a sense of accomplishment that further gives you the strength to turn your thoughts into reality. You become able to envision new ideas to give wings to your dreams.
- Meet interesting people
A vacation comes with an opportunity to meet people who can enlighten you with new ways of making a life rather than making a living. You see people who have actually realized their true passion in their lives and love living life on the edge. They may not be rich and famous like most others but happy with choices they have made.
- Take the most deserved break
No doubt, the fast life people live nowadays has made it difficult for them to think out of the box. In an attempt to be the best, you get so caught up in life events that it seems hard to recognize your passion even if it lies just around the corner. Traveling works as a great stress buster to open up your mind to envision new ideas.
Researchers have proved that travel actually surpasses worldly possessions in relaxing your mind and turning you into a positive person. Positivity instigates good thoughts into your mind. Let’s hope the next time you travel to a new city, you come back knowing what you love to do the most.
Step 5 – Be as selfish as you can be since it’s “your” unique journey
When you are set out to look for your passion, you simply can’t afford the luxury to consider the happiness of all others over your own happiness. Keep yourself on top of your priority list, since it is your life and you have to live it your way. Another part of the fact is that once you are aware of your true passion you could be more productive which means more time to spend with your family and a feeling of completeness that has no match.
No matter whether you turn your passion into your profession or not, you would eventually be able to keep yourself and your loved ones happy. You may feel a little uncomfortable about being selfish but once you get what you are looking for, you can persuade all others around you.
Remember passion can’t be all about money as it is not necessary that your passion help you make a pile of money. There is no compulsion that you could be happy only if you turn your passion into your profession. It is just about feeling happiness deep down inside you. When you are going through a rough phase in your life or at work, your passion may give a few moment of happiness that would take away the pain and misery.
Passion is not about power either; your passion need not help you in that sense. On the contrary, you tend to feel rich and powerful when you are well aware of your passion. You feel as if you are the luckiest person on the whole planet. You never wish to someone else’s life during the moments that you spend doing what you love to do the most.
- Let your dreams define you
People who let others define them by restricting themselves to their suggestions often fail to know their passion in life. It rarely happens that your dreams actually streamline with the expectations of your loved ones. No matter what, listen to your heart and do what it tells you to do.
- Live life your way
It’s your life, live it your way. What others decide for you could make you a winner in life but could never make you a happy person since the real mantra of happiness lies in your passion.
- Make your own rules
There are actually no rules to follow; it’s just that you start following others who themselves have learnt from someone else. Make your own rules; follow your instincts to make wise decisions in life; if not anything else, you would be leading a happy life. Don’t follow footsteps, follow your passion.
- Get a valid reason to live for
You may be leading a life that fulfills all your needs and desires but to live a meaningful life you have a look for your passion that could make you happy no matter what you do in life.
- Turn yourself into an interesting person
Your passion may turn you into an interesting person since you start living your life in true sense when you know what gives you the eternal happiness. You no longer have to follow someone else’s idea of happiness.
The search for you passion could possibly take you in an altogether different direction from what your loved ones or friends have decided for you. You may have to take some big steps to choose between your happiness and the happiness of all others around you. You can’t argue the fact that everyone’s happiness is an hypothetical situation which never really exists. Remember your passion is all about you, everything and everyone comes afterwards.
Tip 6 – Make time to analyze what you admire in your role models
You must be having your role models in life; we all have our own list of favorite personalities. They could be your family members, friends, artists, leaders, or movie stars. Start making a list of your role models. Keep a pen and paper handy. Write every little thing down and evaluate it. When you are done making the list, start writing down what qualities you admire in those people. Their professional life, personal life, ethics, passions, hobbies or things they have done to bring about a change in the society, write almost everything that seem to attract you in anyway. Researchers have proved that you tend to admire people who possess the similar likings and disliking as you. Most of the times, you look up to those people who live your dreams. You wish to be like them, dress like them, talk like them and even wish you could live a life like them. The list you have just made could enfold your own passion in life.
Follow a few simple steps:
- Dig into your list
After coming down to a few but most preferred qualities, start practicing each one by one. You can get the real idea of how close you really are to these qualities in your own life.
- Don’t end up making comparisons
Don’t confuse admiring someone with making a comparison with them. You can admire the qualities of other people with respect, appreciation and love. Don’t let it make you feel low and down. It’s no necessary that you love almost everything about a single person, pick qualities that appeal you the most even if they exist in many different people.
- Give it a shot
It is always important and safe to think over your options in advance. If you get something that gives you a feeling of your passion, try it as a hobby or a side job first. See how long you can really be passionate about it to make sure if it’s your true calling.
- Study people who are where you want to be
People who have what you want to have could guide you through. You simply need to observe them or their life closely and find your ways to get inspired from them. Your thoughts shape your personality as the things that attract you the most make their place in your subconscious mind and influence you every day. They turn you into a negative or a positive person. Quite similarly, people you admire in your life help you turning into a better or a bitter person.
Grownups always instruct youngsters to choose their ideals wisely since the thoughts and ideas that influence them play a vital role in deciding their future ahead. Qualities of your role models could hand you over the keys to your true passion. You might have a hang of extraordinary communication skills of your teacher, your dad’s logical ability or the management skills of your boss. No matter how unachievable it seems to you at this point of time, try to practice them in your own life for some time. It may enlighten you with your own passion in life.
Tip 7 – Try new things to broaden your chances to know what excites you the most
Try something that you have never done before to get closer to your passion. You will never get to know what you passion is until you try new things in life; they can always turn into your passion. You can never get to know your passion merely by thinking over different things; you have to collect new experiences in life. Take help of your loved ones to make yourselves aware of things and activities that you have never participated in, at times the profession and likings of your loved ones turns out to be your own passion.
You can try one of these simple steps to get new experiences in life:
- Take up a new course
Get yourself registered for something that you have been planning to learn since long. You would be amazed at the expertise you would attain within no time. You feel more enthusiastic and encouraged when professional guides your way through it.
- Enlighten yourself
Start reading the thoughts of experts in particular fields or field that you are most interested in; it will help keeping you well informed about it.
- Learn about other’s passion
It always takes an inspiration to achieve something big in life. Ask your family members and friends about their passion and spend some time with them when they are involved in it. You would start feeling motivated to find your passion in life, the more desperate you get the better the chances are.
You should never care what others think or say about it. Try new things in life. Things that seem fascinating at first sight may actually turn out to be boring and frustrating but you can never tell the difference until you dive in. Keep trying new hobbies and minor interests until something really starts making your day and grabs your attention.
Tip 8 – Introspect as your passion may be wrapped around your deepest values
Are you someone who has always been more concerned about values and ethics in life? If it is so, then you must be looking for your values in your life and your work too. People who always hold their values above everything else tend to measure their success on the scale of whether or not their life is turning out the way they want it to be. If you live a life that matches your values, you feel happy and content. On the contrary, when your life moves in a different direction you feel as if you are wasting all your energy and efforts.
There are people who always want to be close to their families as for them family defines happiness. If these people, for the sake of getting a good career move to another city, they may be having a bright future but can’t really be happy staying away from their family. The reason is simple; they have their family on top of their priority list. In the same way, people who find it hard to assimilate the thought of competition are misfits for jobs that demand them to be happy about the fact.
It’s not only about career but in general if you happen to do something that does not satisfy your value needs then you may have to rethink about your choices. No wonder, your values change from time to time, as in the beginning of career everyone wants to get rich and famous, but when you start your family, you want nothing but happiness of your kids. Passion on the other hand gives you the luxury of both enjoying your life and keeping your loved ones happy, no matter what you do to be a good provider to your family.
Consider the following steps to know what you value the most:
- Times you felt most proud
Think back and recall the times when you felt proud of yourself. It could be anything, feeding stray dogs, bird watching or doing things that make a difference in someone’s life. There are people who have made their own identity simply by following their values in life. People like Mother Teresa, Nelson Mandela and Mahatma Gandhi followed their values and became larger than life to live until eternity.
- Times when you experience the sense of fulfillment and completeness
We all come across moments when we feel complete as if there is nothing that could be more meaningful in life. Note down some such moments and analyze what made them so special for you.
- What makes your list of values?
Is it ambitiousness, excellence, reliability, boldness, uniqueness, empathy, equality, originality, perfection, generosity or something else? What really gets you going in life? When you have a list of things that you value the most, try to evaluate what actually holds your spirit.
There is every possibility that you may get your true passion in the region of your values and if it were the case, you would have to do nothing but listen to your heart. Check if your values really match with your lifestyle and the way you envision it. Is there any value in particular that holds a unique place in your life? Remember, you live with integrity, have clarity of thoughts and get more confident when you consider you values while making important decisions of your life.
Conclusion – Embrace your “moment of truth” as nothing could actually make you feel better
You get to know when you find your passion. It is as if someone is ringing hundred bells close to your ears. You would not want to be around something else but your passion. You would want to do it more often without even considering time or place. You would get up each day with an itch to do it again. You stop hearing noises around you and feel as if it meant the whole world to you.
Doing what you love to do never lets you focus on anything else, no matter how exciting it seems. You would find it easy to spend days without logging on social networking websites and even your best friends would find it hard to break the bond that you share with your passion. When it happens, grab a pen and note down the thing that you are doing at that very moment. Making it your career or not is not important but doing it more often merely can keep you happy. This would really be your “true calling.”
The world of the work nowadays offers new ways to choose your career and make money. A world-renowned socialite and philanthropist Oprah Winfrey followed her passion in her life. She has always been passionate to talk to people and get them best advice to overcome adversities in life. In 1984, she took up her dream job and started hosting a show called “AM Chicago,” it was a huge success and then with “Oprah Winfrey show” Oprah actually set new milestones of success. No wonder people could witness her happiness and love for her profession even in the beginning of her career.
Such is the power of passion, Oprah could be a just another host like many others. Now she is the role model of millions of people and one of the richest Americans who has helped many others to live their dreams. Oprah says, “the big secret in life is that there is no big secret, be authentic, follow your instincts and you will be a success.” She feels that you are destined to succeed if you love your job so much that could work without even getting paid.
Nevertheless, turning your passion into your profession is something that needs to be done only after exploring the career perspectives in the field. Ask professionals and all those who have done something in the same area, pursue your passion on part time basis until then. Millions of people have discovered new ideas to make money by transforming their passion into their profession.
You must research job options that provide you a chance to make a living in the same field. Making a list of those who have similar passion would be a great help. Internet is full of possibilities; you can always get connected and share ideas with anyone all around the world. Remember, the key to your passion is doing what you love to the most.
Here are a few tips that you can follow to get to know your true passion: