Follow Your Passion

This is something I’ve been pondering for a while; one of the many ways my self-doubt has tried to mess with me lately.  We’ve ALL heard the advice.  It’s almost taken on some mythical status anymore.  Follow Your Passion!  It’s the key to the universe!

There’s a few issues that never seem to get addressed though.  The OBVIOUS first question is “What if you suck at what you’re passionate about?”   Let’s be honest, IF it’s something you’re TRULY passionate about, you’re going to work at it till you get not just good but great at it (even if you need training to grow).  95% of the time that’s true anyway.  There’s that other 5% or so that just doesn’t have the aptitude for something they’re passionate about.

Then there’s is your passion viable for supporting yourself and a family?  The financial guy I listen to on the radio rails against following your passion for that reason.  “Spending 10s of thousands of dollars to get a degree in left handed puppetry is idiotic”.  OK, extreme example, but he makes a point.  Some things are going to take more effort and have lower payoff than others.  The average engineer is going to make more than the average writer or artist.  You have to take a hard look at earning potential and decide if you’re OK with it.  Don’t blame others for the choice you make here either.

The good thing is that people can find multiple things they’re passionate about.  If one doesn’t work, look at another one.  Expose yourself to as many ideas and careers as possible.  You may be surprised what you find you’re drawn to.  There’s always the option of saving your passion as a “side hussle” also.  If it really pays off, you can always discard that job as an engineer to paint or write poetry.

Then there’s discerning a passion from something you enjoy…  This is one I’ve struggled with for ages and a couple of attempted careers.  The simple answer is that a passion is something you’re willing to endure the hardships to pursue.  It’s NOT I want to be a rock star because it’s cool and I’ll be famous.  I hate you all for not buying my music and making me live over mom’s garage.  It’s I’m willing to practice 10 hours a day, play that guitar till my fingers bleed, get singing and playing lessons because I’m only so-so right now, and treat it all as the price to pay and part of the journey.  You not just accept but embrace that there are no shortcuts.  THEN it’s a passion, and worth pursuing.

And yes, after struggling through alot of self doubt, that’s where I’m at now with my writing.

7 thoughts on “Follow Your Passion

  1. Matthew Whiteside

    Great read, thanks for writing this. You know what I have found is that Passion doesnt have to be limited to career, right. So I went through a self discovery portion of my life trying to figure out what job would make me happy what thing was it that I could do to give my life purpose until I realized my questions were off.

    I had to get to the root of the issue, and ask my self what gets me going what motivates, inspires and turns me on? The funny thing is it was doing those things. I learned that I love to inspire people because I crave inspiration, I learned that I love to motivate people because I crave Motivation, I learned… Well you get the point but I began focusing on the root of my passion and when I did that amazing things began to flow. I love writing because it is an outlet for inspiration and motivation.

    Writing is a channel for me, but I am not limited to writing there are multiple pathways and career opportunities that I didn’t even think of because I wasn’t focused on the root. My why for writing is Inspiration and Motivation, self improvement in hopes of helping others. In that there are so many avenues for which I can express that passion and make a living.

    I enjoy your work, you are a talented writer.

    Liked by 3 people

    Reply
  2. Liz

    So true! Just because you’re passionate about something, doesn’t give you an immediate “in” on whatever that something is. It takes time, and perseverance, a Mack truck full of resiliency. I look at all the “nerds” I knew growing up – the comic book readers, the computer tinkerers, and the deeply invested in specific TV shows… There are entire industries built up around their passions, and look at San Diego Comic Con! I never would have thought that *thousands* of people would pay through the nose to dress a certain way, and interact with others – and there is, and so many other conventions are.
    I’m finding that my passions, my true interests, are a lot less physically involved, and more about finding that peace within.

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply
  3. The Eclectic Contrarian

    A passion is a passion, unfortunately not a occupation… (for most)

    I feel like a jack of all trades but master of none..

    Like

    Reply
      1. The Eclectic Contrarian

        I think it’s a priority thing. And some fields there is so much talent that it can be easy to get lost in the masses. You really have to stand out to get noticed.

        Liked by 1 person

        Reply
        1. Silk Cords Post author

          Exactly. Being a pro athlete being a great example of an abundance of talent. So the question becomes “It that passion strong enough to make you practice hard 10 ours a day like Michael Jordan did?”. IF so, then that passion has a shot at seeing reality.

          Liked by 1 person

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