Do you have a passion? This is a question that you have often been asked during a job interview or a first meeting with a complete stranger. It can be embarrassing when you don’t really know what to answer. A passion is a strong term that implies having something that you are really good at and that you talk about with sparks in your eyes. However, you may feel that you don’t really have a passion in the common sense of the word. If this is the case, here’s my advice to you.
Proceed by elimination
When we do not know what we like, the simplest thing to do is to first think about what we don’t like in order to proceed by elimination. So here are the questions you can ask yourself: what causes you emotions, even negative ones? What makes you so agitated that you want to speak up? Is there a particular subject on which you have strong opinions? You can start by making a list of the significant events in your life, or the moments that have helped to reveal a new side of your personality.
Wandering is not failing
You must allow yourself to grope and experiment. If you haven’t had a passion that drives you so far, it means you need to dig a little deeper to find out who you are. Everyone’s values and principles can evolve and are linked to each personal story and experience. Besides, there is no hurry. Of course, you may feel a little uncomfortable when you hear other people talking so emotionally and lively about their passion for music, a certain sport or activity. But that’s no reason to pretend. Take your time and learn from past experiences. For example, you had an interest in an activity/subject X but you didn’t continue because you didn’t like the Y aspect of that activity/subject.
What makes you unique?
Also, in order not to simply do what everyone else does or follow trends, you need to focus on what makes you unique. There are 3 elements that can help you define what makes you unique:
- What you think of yourself. Do you have a positive image of yourself? Do you believe in yourself and in your abilities? Are you the type of person who criticizes yourself easily or do you easily move on to something else? etc.
- What your loved ones think of you. People who like you usually have a positive image of you, but the question is, which aspects of your personality do they like the most? What they think of your faults and qualities is interesting to get an outside view.
- The image you project to strangers. It is possible to convey a completely opposite image of who you are to someone. That is why it is useful to know what is the first impression that strangers have of you in general. For example, you may be shy and reserved and yet reflect the image of someone who is self-confident and not afraid to approach others.
Once you have done this introspective work, put down on paper the values that are important to you. Hard work, caring, loyalty, sharing, family, etc. Your list will not be exhaustive but it will give you an idea of the principles you would like to find in your passion.
Find your Why rather than your vocation
As a child, we are asked what we would like to do later in life. So we are unconsciously asked early in life to choose our professional vocation. This vocation helps to define how an individual can contribute economically and/or socially to the society in which he or she lives. Of course, you have to feed yourself, find a housing and pay your bills. But finding your professional vocation is not necessarily linked to your passions. A passion is related to your Why or the deepest reasons that push you to act and think a certain way.
What is your ultimate goal in life?
At the dawn of your last breath, what would you like to be remembered for? And above all, what regrets would you like to avoid?
By definition you are unique. Everyone has their own rhythm. Some people think they have found their way but change their lives several years later and others search for themselves long before finding their own. It doesn’t matter. What matters is that you progress. For me, the ultimate failure would be to be the same person I was yesterday. So as long as you keep moving forward and keep asking yourself the right questions (without necessarily having the answers right away) you can be proud of yourself.
Just like you who is reading me, I don’t have any particular passion. I am simply passionate about life, its beauty and challenges and all the opportunities we have on this Earth. And that’s good enough. Until you find what you are really passionate about in life, focus on what brings you joy and makes you want to get up in the morning. It is by paying attention to the details. You will end up having a clear vision of the person you want to become.
Psst I have a gift for you.