“Uncovering passion feels like being reunited with a lost love or finally arriving home after a very long trip”, a friend recently said. There was no mistaking it, she’d found hers and was spewing light. “It’s exciting but there’s a scary side,” she continued, “how to create a life of passion and purpose…there’s no guidebook.”
The place of creating is exciting, but she’s right danger lurks in the form of doubt and fear. As soon as you decide to go forward you’re assaulted with an inner diatribe, “life is just fine the way it is…… you’re too old to start something new….. you are practical and responsible you don’t do things like this…very foolish….what are you thinking?”
Immediately limitations are in place. You begin making deals with yourself, “Ok…I’ll wait until I/we are totally and absolutely financially secure…..family and friends agree it’s a good idea…the cows come home.”
Oh to be human.
But……out of the darkness comes a voice….. “To get something you never had, you have to do something you never did.” Jose N. Harris
YOU’RE NOT ALONE – This happens to all of us at one time or another. Fear takes no prisoners. For those who are ready to release the vice grip and squash the nasty beast let’s join hands, open the door and step outside……..together.
JUMP – The thought of jumping makes a lot of us quiver in our boots. But consider this quote by John Burroughs, “Jump and the net will appear.” We know deep in our hearts this is true, the net always miraculously appears. Yes, it’s scary because you don’t know exactly what you’ll find on the other side, but that’s the whole point. It’s something new. Jumping builds character. Being willing to jump builds courage, jumping creates purpose and having jumped gives confidence. Just jump (others are jumping beside you). To jump is to live.
CONFIDENCE – If you think that you need confidence to do that thing that you’re afraid of, you’ve totally misunderstood what confidence is. Confidence is certainty in a particular outcome. I know that if I drop a ball it will fall because I have confidence in gravity. But how did I get confidence in gravity? I didn’t get it from reading about gravity I got it by testing it. We can’t get confidence in advance. It’s a result of action, not a requirement of action. Shift the focus away from trying to gain confidence. Instead, first get courage and manifest fearlessness. Then you’ll be able to do whatever it is you were afraid of. Then, and only then, will you gain confidence.
COURAGE – The word courage comes from the word core, the heart. Courage comes from the heart. It’s the heart caring about something, believing in something, being called to (do) something. When you’re afraid, fear pulls you away but courage is what drives you forward. Courage is an emotion of love that drives you in the direction of your fears. It occurs when you believe in the outcome of something more than you believe in the fear. So the way to manifest courage is to think about the outcome more than you think about fear.
Bronnie Ware, an Australian palliative care nurse wrote a book entitled, The Top 5 Regrets of the Dying. Regret #1 is, “I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.” Read more here.
JUST DO IT – Close your eyes…take a deep breath and just do it! My heart beats a bit faster when I hit PUBLISH on this blog. It’s that moment when my thoughts – which one millisecond before were exclusively mine – are now shared with anyone who wants to read. Will they resonate, help, inspire, connect? Will people think they have value or will they think I’m a little batty and off my rocker? Once I hit PUBLISH a sense of freedom flows over me. So whatever it is that you want to do, just do it – press the button, make the call and take the step. Action defeats and silences fear.
BUILD MOMENTUM – Starting something new doesn’t mean you have to dedicate all your time and resources to it. You can start out small, taking small step, setting aside a small amount of time and/or money each month. Schedule a few minutes to do it each day. By doing a little every day, you’re on a path, which will intensify the feeling of passion. You’ll find yourself wanting to devote more of your time and resources to it. Then, at some point (see above) you’ll, JUMP or JUST DO IT!
THRIVE ON ADVENTURE – When you think about doing something new you often experience a sense of uncertainty. There are so many unknowns. So you shy away from it, worry about it, fear it. Do nothing. Isn’t it interesting though that we travel the world, we do all sorts of things that are wrought with uncertainty. In fact, we do these things because the results are uncertain. We seek adventure because we love to experience the unknown. Hmmm…double standard?
WHAT IF… What if you could live your life as an adventure? What if the uncertainty is not the thing that deters you, but the reason that you do it? What if a life of passion and purpose was yours to live fully?
How will you know until you try?
“Follow your bliss and don’t be afraid, doors will open where you didn’t know they were going to be.” Joseph Campbell
reACTION [to change in the response to stimulus]: further study
I’ve just read 2 books by Ken Robinson – THE ELEMENT (How finding your passion changes everything) and FINDING YOUR ELEMENT (how to discover your talents and passions and transform your life). I could hardly put either down….highly recommended for passion seekers!
“If we did everything we were capable of we would astound ourselves.” Thomas Edison