We hear a lot about how you need to find your passion. They say if you find your passion, you will be happy. Because we are constantly being told to find our passion, we keep looking for that one thing that ignites us.
Then there are those of us who are not passionate about anything, or passionate about too many things. I fall into the latter category. Sure, I can say I am passionate about the written word, but that really doesn’t narrow down a topic, does it?
Recently I watched a TedTalk about this very issue. I just stumbled upon it on my local public television station and I have since looked for it online to no avail. I wish I could share it with you because it changed how I think about what it means to be passionate about something.
What I took away from her (I can’t even tell you her name) presentation is that finding your one passion is overrated. She seems to believe that you shouldn’t waste your time on finding your passion. I heard her saying that being passionate about one thing is not necessarily how it should work.
You can’t imagine how my ears perked up when I heard this. I was so excited about this notion that I didn’t take any notes (including anything that would help me locate the Talk again). It wasn’t exactly a new concept to me, but I never heard anyone discuss it in this way. It was liberating.
All my life I was never able to answer the question, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” Sure, I could say I want to be a writer, but then the follow up question was completely impossible. “What do you want to write about?”
Um…I don’t know.
I had dreams of writing about the injustices of the world, writing a best-selling novel, writing a weekly column in the newspaper, but about what? I felt I couldn’t write about anything because I had to write about one thing. I had to be an “expert” to be a writer.
It is one reason I started a blog. I am my own boss and I can write about whatever I want. Of course, I want it to be of some value to people. I want people to read my words and come back for more, but what keeps me writing every day is that I get to write what I feel like writing that day. I don’t have to limit myself to one topic, one passion.
So, if you are struggling to find your passion, don’t despair! You likely do not have only one thing and that is OK. Being passionate about many things makes you an interesting person. You are able to carry on a conversation about many different subjects and listen to others with interest. You are what they call “a well-rounded person.”
Keep yourself open to whatever comes you way. Say yes to new experiences whenever you have the opportunity. You might find your passion in one thing or all things. You no longer have to limit yourself.
Oh, and if you know the woman I am referring to in this post, please let me know!