Tag: what is your passion in life


5 Ways to Discover New Passions in Your Life

Originally published on The Daily Positive.

Is it time for you to learn something new or try something again? Is there a place you’ve never visited? I challenge you to step out of your comfort zone, explore your surroundings, and talk to interesting people. Here’s how doing so can lead to new passions:

1. Try something new.

When we open ourselves up to new experiences, we discover passions we never imagined! If I was told three years ago I would be spending my free time stand-up paddle boarding down the river, I wouldn’t believe it. And if I was told this new passion would trigger a career change, I really wouldn’t believe it. This all came from taking a beginner paddle boarding class.

new passions

2. Try something old.

The first time I tried rock climbing I was horrible and thought I could never do it. A couple years later, I tried again, and surprisingly, I could! What was the difference? Just a little tweak in my approach. I listened to what an expert said about using my legs more than my arms. This made a huge difference!

Don’t assume because you failed at something once, you’ll fail again. Try a different approach!

3. Travel.

I know a woman who discovered a unique passion when she traveled to Italy. While there, she learned the time-honored art of bookbinding by hand. First, bookbinding became a hobby for her, and now it’s her full-time job! If she had never visited Italy, she may still be stuck in her previously miserable career.

New places or even a simple change of scenery can lead you down a path you never knew existed. You don’t have to travel far away, new passions can be discovered somewhere within driving distance too. 

4.  Pay attention to your surroundings.

When you pay attention to your surroundings, you’ll discover new opportunities for new passions to arise. Sometimes just inquiring about something that catches your eye can lead to a newly discovered passion.

Many cities and local colleges host community classes on topics within arts, languages, computers, etc. In the past, I’ve taken a photography class, an archery class, and even a fly-fishing class. I’ve also taught some classes! This year I plan to take a marketing class and a financial success class. Pay attention to the opportunities around you! 

5. Talk to people.

A few years ago a friend of mine and his girlfriend were traveling in Florida when they noticed a van with the picture of a stand-up paddle boarder on it. They inquired about it and discovered a place where they could learn to paddle board. The first day, they fell in the water several times but went back a second day to try again. They quickly became so passionate about this experience they decided to open their own paddle boarding company. They talked to everyone in the business to learn as much as they could. Nine months later, they opened their own paddle shop with much success! Their success happened just from expressing an interest and learning from the people around them.

Everyone has the opportunity to discover new passions. Find more ways to do so in the complimentary on-demand webinar 5 Ways to Pursue Your Passions in Work and Life.

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Too Old for Gold? Age Is Just a Number

Like most people, I’ve been watching the Olympics the past week and a half. It is the best way to witness people’s pursuit of their passions in action. What I love most about the Olympics and sports in general is the inspiration and encouragement it provides for everyone who has a passion and a dream.

You’re Never Too Old…

One story in particular I am personally inspired by this Olympic season is of the Uzbekistan gymnast Oksana Chusovitina. Oksana is 41-years-old competing in her SEVENTH Olympics (and still hasn’t ruled out Tokyo!) in a sport where age 21 is considered “old.” Oksana is my “shero” because she and I are almost the same age (I’ve got a year on her), and she is not letting her age be an obstacle to her dreams and her passions.

Most people in her position would tell themselves they are “too old.” Too old for what, I ask? Tell that to the 85-year-old woman I met while recently volunteering for the Senior Olympics. By the time she had made it to the event I was working, she had already competed and medaled in NINE other events over the previous three days.

…Or Too Young

On the flip side of this, I was recently working with a new client who shared with me that one of her self-talk limiting beliefs (a perceived obstacle) is she is “too young.” I found this surprising coming from someone who works as an actress, also a career where time and age are against you. My response was, “too young for what?” When I delved deeper into where this limiting belief came from, I discovered she suffers from the same thing I do, “youngest-sibling-syndrome.”

Age Is Just a Number

The point is, age is just a number. We have the choice to let our circumstances, others’ opinions, or even our own negative self-talk control our lives. Or, we have the choice to be inspired and moved by the examples of those who ignore all the “you can’t because of your age” talk and say to themselves, “I can, even if I fail in my attempt.”

From the judges’ perspective, Oksana failed miserably in her landing of her vault. Upon landing so hard she ended up going into a flip on the mat. From my perspective, she should have gotten extra points for the extra flip, for making such a failed landing look so graceful, and for experience!

Change Your Limiting Beliefs

If you have a God-given desire in you to try something you may consider to be either “too old” or “too young” for, ask yourself these questions:

  • What is this limiting belief keeping me from?
  • What would be the worst-case scenario if I keep believing this?
  • How can I turn this belief around to a more positive statement?
  • How can I benefit from believing the more positive statement?
  • What would be the best-case scenario if I start believing the positive statement?

Be honest in your answers. For more inspiration, check out these other blog posts:

Combine Your Passions to Create Opportunity

When helping my clients, one thing I like to do is encourage them to brainstorm ways they can combine their passions. An example of this is someone who has a love for sports and for photography parlaying that into a part-time or full-time job as a sports photographer. Or, someone who is studying music but also loves children and helping people could focus their career plans toward music therapy at a children’s hospital.

Taking your hobbies and passions a step further

I recently saw this quote on Pinterest and totally agree…

three hobbies

…but I also like to ask, “How can you take this a step further and find some overlap between the three?” What if you found one passion or hobby that made you money AND kept you in shape? Or one that let you earn money while exploring your creative hobby?

My own example

I’ve worked hard to try to do the same for myself. It’s taken a while to make each of my passions (spirituality, coaching, writing, and stand up paddle boarding) fit in a way that makes sense, but it finally came together this past year. About two years ago I discovered a passion for stand up paddle boarding which is a fun way for me to keep in shape in one of my favorite places:  on the water! While doing this, I started seeing a parallel between the lessons I gained from stand up paddling and the lessons in Scripture. I decided to use my creative juices for writing to start recording those parallels in the form of a devotional blog called SUP:  Spiritual Understanding & Prayer (on a SUP board).

But I still had a desire to figure out a way to incorporate stand up paddling in my work as a career and life coach. This took the longest to come together, but when I changed my business over from an image consulting company to a career and life coaching service, it suddenly became very clear how I could accomplish this. I could actually conduct a coaching session with clients on the water (using my spare board), and could translate the SUP beginner lessons with the things they are dealing with in life and work. For instance, how to achieve not just physical balance (obviously necessary for SUP), but also work-life balance.

Results

I have already taken a few clients out this summer and so far I’ve received great feedback from them. One said that because she did crew in college, going out to the river felt familiar to her which eased her nervousness about trying SUP. She said in turn, that has helped ease her nervousness before job interviews because of the techniques I’ve taught her for job interviewing makes each interview feel familiar and less nerve-wracking than before.

Another client has said that just being on the water left her feeling rejuvenated both physically and mentally, and ready to take on life’s next challenge. For me, it’s awesome that I get to use my passion for stand up paddle boarding and my skill for teaching a new hobby to make money while helping others, introducing them to something new, and getting a little exercise in all at the same time!

How can you combine your passions?

Whatever your hobbies are, I encourage you to start thinking about how you can combine your passions for maximum benefits, whether that means earning a profit, getting more exercise built into your routine, getting your creative juices flowing, or all three! One way to start getting ideas is by completing the 8-Step Goal-Achievement Plan which you will begin receiving for free when you subscribe to the paNASH newsletter.

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11 Benefits Of Pursuing Your Passions

Last week, I talked about what it means to be “passion poor” (feelings of hunger and emptiness when we are living without passion). This week, I want to talk about what “passion rich” looks like. It includes all the benefits of pursuing your passions. Benefits that come from living a life with passion and making our passions our plan, not just our dream.

Passion Rich

When it comes to life in general, there are many benefits to pursuing our passions, whether they’re a hobby or a form of service to our fellow man, or both. These benefits include:

1. A simplified life and personal freedom. With all the chaos and information overload in today’s world, there’s something very freeing about going back to the basics of our interests and joys. Over time we tend to complicate what was once something simple. This introduces confusion, and eventually our passions and reasons for doing something get misplaced. Rediscovering our passions (or discovering new ones!) can bring some simplicity back into our lives. This can lead to new freedom in our day-to-day routines.

2. Greater self-awareness and self-confidence. Many times we feel pressure from family or society to be something we’re not. This can cause our confidence to plummet because we aren’t operating in our own strengths and interests. Taking time alone to listen to what our soul is telling us and to recognize our strengths and interests leads to authenticity, which in turn leads to greater self-confidence.

3. Expansion of our comfort zones. As our self-confidence increases, we begin to push the boundaries of our comfort zones. It’s in this expanded territory where we can discover new passions we never knew we had!

4. Empowerment. With increased self-confidence and new strengths and interests, we become empowered to combine our passions and take them to a new level that can benefit a greater whole.

Making A Living With Our Passions

Oftentimes, when we’re pursuing our passions authentically, our passions become our career or vocation. We’re actually able to get paid to do the things we love to do! For some of us, we kind of just “fall” into such a situation. For the rest of us, we have to make a conscious, intentional decision to make a career change, and then figure out how to do that. This frequently involves changing our vision, overcoming our fears, and maneuvering through a variety of obstacles. The benefits of taking our passions to the next level and turning them into our vocations include:

5. Work we love. There’s nothing more life-draining than being stuck in a job that doesn’t bring us some form of joy and doesn’t utilize our strengths and interests. Now, I must say what I’ve always told my clients when coaching them on their careers. None of us are ever going to love 100% of our job 100% of the time. But if we can find something we love at least 60% of the time, then we can be enriched and fulfilled in our work. And yes, there are ways to find such work!

6. Professional growth and career success. When we’re doing what we love, we can’t help but excel and grow in our area of expertise. This can lead to rapid promotion and career success.

7. Professional freedom. In pursuing our passions as a living, we can have the opportunity to be our own boss which gives us professional freedom such as choosing who we want to work with, making our own schedule, and even obliterating salary caps!

8. Fulfillment of our vocational purposes. There’s nothing more rewarding and fulfilling than knowing we’re doing the work we were called to do. This happens when we’re using our skillset to do what we love and what benefits others which results in a return. It’s what I call “finding your sweet spot.”

Life And Career In Harmony

When we’re able to incorporate our passions into both our careers and our lives, we get to experience the ultimate benefits:

9. Cohesiveness and harmony in work and life. When we experience this benefit, the lines between work and life are blurred because our work often doesn’t feel like work. The joy we experience in our work spills over into our lives, and vice versa.

10. Increased satisfaction overall. The cohesiveness mentioned above leads to an overall satisfaction with every area of our lives.

11. Being part of something bigger than ourselves. As humans we are all born with a desire to fulfill a purpose that fits into the bigger picture and grand scheme of our world. We want to leave the legacy of having made an improvement and impact on our surroundings in our time here on earth. We accomplish this through the unique passions and abilities with which we’ve been equipped.

Our passions are meant to be discovered, pursued and used. They were never meant to lie dormant or be hidden under a rock!

Do you need help unearthing some old (or new) passions? Or do you need help figuring out how to incorporate your passions into your life or career? Let me know! I’m happy to help you figure it out so you too can enjoy all the benefits listed above.

Or feel free to check out the complimentary on-demand program 5 Ways to Pursue Your Passions in Life and Work.

Passion Poor

Last year, an article written by Lauren Martin on EliteDaily.com entitled “7 Types Of Broke You Need To Be Before You Can Appreciate Being Happy” was widely circulated on social media. Now, I don’t know many people who desire to be broke in any way, but having read the seven types of broke Martin described, I can say that it is so true that it’s hard to appreciate something if you’ve never been without it.

The seven types of broke Martin writes about are:

  1. Rent poor.
  2. Travel poor.
  3. Love poor.
  4. Friend poor.
  5. Passion poor.
  6. Success poor.
  7. Inspiration poor.

I can honestly say I think I’ve experienced all but one of these types of poor. And having experienced them has given me a greater appreciation for the blessings I have now. But since this is a blog about passion, let’s talk about #5:  passion poor.

Martin describes passion poor as:

Living without passion is one of the hungriest times you’ll face. It’s when the pain in the pit of your stomach is strongest, and when you think you could drown in the emptiness of your being.

You find yourself walking around as a ghost, just wandering, exploring — looking for something to fill you and ignite an ache deep inside you.

If you’ve never been passion poor, you’ve never been hungry enough to go out and find yourself one [a passion]. We’re not all born with passion, the same way we’re not born full. You have to go out and find it. You have to go and feed yourself.

You have to experience a lot of things and go a lot of places you wouldn’t normally go unless you weren’t completely starved of inspiration.

Internal and External Passions

I will say this in response to Martin’s description:  I believe there are some passions and longings that grow inside of you even when you’re not looking for them. A personal example of this was my desire to go to Australia. I’m not sure how or why I had that desire, but I do know it started bubbling up in me as a young child, probably as early as four or five years old. There was something inside me I couldn’t explain, just this feeling of needing to go and see this land of contrasts. That desire never left me, so when I was old enough and had the means to do so, I did something about it. I spent an entire month touring all over Australia’s Northern Territory, the Outback, the Great Barrier Reef, the farmlands, and cities like Sydney.

Ayers Rock 2003

But there are also passions for things we didn’t know we had until we exposed ourselves to something new and allowed ourselves to experience them. Another personal example would be my passion for stand up paddle boarding. Had I not been curious enough about it to give it a try, I never would have known how much I would love it. I never would have experienced the joy and health benefits I now get from doing something that’s as close to walking on water as a human can ever get. It’s awesome!

2015-12-31 11.55.19

All of this is true when it comes to our work as well. For some people, they’ve always known what their purpose is and what they wanted to do. For others they are still trying to figure it all out. And there are even others who have pursued their inner passion and reached success, but now are trying to figure out what’s next for them. Is this you? Are you currently starved of inspiration? Are you passion poor?

Become Passion Rich

If so, I encourage you to open your mind to something you’ve never done. This could include taking a class on a topic you know nothing about. It could include interviewing someone who you think has a really cool job to find out how they got into that line of work (I love those type of interviews and will soon be featuring some in this blog and on an upcoming podcast – stay tuned!). It could include sitting down with me to explore some ideas that match your personality and interests. It could even include trying something daring like skydiving!

Go. Find. Discover. Don’t starve your passion, feed your passion!

We’d love to hear from you! In the comment box below, share how you’ve discovered or pursued your own passions. Tell us something new you’re currently exploring. The more you share, the more you are an encouragement to others to pursue their own passions!

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