Friday, July 9, 2010

What's your passion?

This is the question that I ask every person that I encounter in life.

I’m lucky — I’ve found my passion, and I’m living it. I can testify that it’s the most wonderful thing, to be able to make a living doing what I love.

I’d like to help you get started figuring out what you’d love doing. This turns out to be one of the most common threads when I meet people. If your not sure then this is how.

1. What are you good at? Even if you are just starting out, you might have shown some talent when you were young, even as young as elementary school. Have you always been a good writer, speaker, drawer, organizer, builder, teacher, friend? Have you been good at ideas, connecting people, gardening, selling? Give this some thought. Get away from computers, phones and all connections to the outer world — once you have done this often you will remember the things that you have done well.

2. What excites you? A hobby, a side job, something you do as a volunteer or a parent or a spouse or a friend. It could be something you haven’t done in awhile.

3. What do you read about? What have you spent hours reading about online? What magazines do you look forward to reading? What blogs do you follow? What section of the bookstore do you usually peruse?

4. What have you dreamed when you were a child? You might have some dreams you’ve always wanted to do — to be a novelist, an artist, a designer, an architect, a doctor, an entrepreneur, a programmer

5. Learn, ask, take notes. Pick one thing from the list that excites you most. This is your first candidate. Now surround yourself by the right people. People that are positive and inspire you to be a better person.

6. Experiment. Here’s where the learning turns to experience. This motivates you to improve, it gets you feedback, and your reputation will improve as you do. Pay attention to how you feel doing it — is it something you look forward to, that gets you excited, that you love to share?

7. Focus. Focus knowing there’s no shame in giving something a shot and failing, because it’ll teach you valuable lessons that will help you to be successful in the next attempt.

8. What Fears? This is the biggest obstacle for most people – self-doubt and fear of failure. You’re going to face it and banish it. First, acknowledge it rather than ignoring or denying it. "What’s the worst that can happen?” Usually it’s not catastrophic. Then celebrate your success, no matter how big or especially small.

9. Find the time. Don’t have the time to pursue this passion? Make the time, and not some B.S. excuse! If this is a priority, you’ll make the time — rearrange your life until you have the time. Do what it takes but “DO NOT SACRAFICE QUALITY TIME FOR YOURSELF AND FAMILY”, these moments I promise you will inspire you and give you a reason to leave a legacy.

10. How to make a living doing it. This doesn’t happen overnight. You need to do something, get good at it, be passionate about it. Build a reputation, find people who are interested in what you do, demonstrate your knowledge and passion.

It’ll require a lot of reflection and soul-searching, at first, then a lot of courage and learning and experimentation, and finally a lot of commitment.