Knowing your passion in life gives you something to build the rest of your life around. Your passion can be anything that simultaneously challenges you, intrigues you and motivates you. Contrary to the idea that doing what you love makes work effortless, a passion puts you to work. It’s what you’re willing to sacrifice lesser leisure and pleasures for. Seek it and where you find it may surprise you.
Your biggest passion might have surfaced early in life. Natural talents often emerge when we’re young through sports, music, math or science. Revisiting what you used to love when you were younger but have drifted away from over the years can be one way to recapture a passion. Look back on your childhood and analyze how old fascinations might transfer into your life or career today.
The American Heritage Dictionary defines passion as something you have “boundless energy” for. Make a list of the things that you think you could never get sick of doing. Additionally, realizing what changes you want to make in your life can give you insights into your passion. “Forbes” contributor Glenn Llopis suggests that passion is what fuels your intention and strategies for creating change.
Passion may be based on more general traits that unfold over time. For example, competence, creativity and making an impact can contribute to a feeling of genuine passion, but such traits are developed through practice and experience. Defining your real passion, then, may require taking time to develop the skills that will lead you to experience more empowering traits in work and in life. For example, it may take years fine-tuning your writing skills and establishing yourself in the publishing industry before the income, opportunities and notoriety you earn help you appreciate writing as your real passion.
Being aware of what you enjoy most about your life can help you define your passion. Your passion doesn’t have to be career-related. For instance, being a great husband, wife or parent can be your real passion. Discovery may come from objectively paying attention to your pastimes, hobbies, friendships, experiences you create for yourself, and even the types of conversation topics that exhilarate you, suggests author Sherrie Bourg Carter in a December 2011 article for “Psychology Today.” Ultimately, you might find your passion to be the underlying thread that connects all of your favorite things in life