by Carla Howard
I’ve been reading a lot lately. Partly because I’m on a mission to read 100 books by the end of the year, and partly because of my love of learning. Here’s what I’ve learned about passion in the process:
You can find “passion” in book titles, chapter headings, or sprinkled throughout the content of just about every recent business book out there.
How to find it…
How to harness it…
How to use it to make money…
Why you should (or shouldn’t) follow it…
And the list goes on.
But what if you don’t have a specific life passion?
Or, what if you feel like your passion is fleeting, changes frequently, or perhaps you have multiple passions with no single burning desire fighting to take center stage? Somehow, we seem to feel like this version of our passion doesn’t quite measure up. It’s as if a person who has a single passion that guides their entire life has “gotten it right.”
I don’t agree.
One of the most inspiring notions about passion that I’ve come across is that it’s perfectly normal and right for our passions to come and go.
Some of our passions may only last a day! Yes, you read that correctly—a single day. When you see a situation that needs fixing, you fix it, and then move on. That’s your passion driving you to do what needs to be done!
Sometimes our lives take unexpected turns and our passions change.
My mother’s story is the perfect example of how life can throw us a curveball that creates a new passion, a mission, and yes—a new business.
My dad was diagnosed with congestive heart failure four years ago. Overnight, my southern cooking mom had to change her bacon-grease-lovin’ ways. She was super frustrated over the lack of information, recipes, and guidance on how to reduce my dad’s sodium intake.
Enter a new passion.
Not only was my mom successful in reducing sodium in my dad’s diet, she also started a new business. Oh yes she did!! My “70-something” mother has created six online classes (two more in the hopper), a YouTube channel, and has a stack of shiny new business cards. Even more remarkable—to keep her business running she has learned a boatload of new skills! She can set up and use her fancy new HD camera to record her courses, has mastered video editing software, uploads files online to her landing page, and now she is maximizing traffic with SEO.
Five years ago, my mother didn’t have a passion for helping people reduce sodium in their diet. Today—well—she not only has a passion for it, Judy Craft has “The Sodium Attacker” apron to prove it!
If you aren’t sure what your passion is, or if your previous passion has hit the road and nothing has magically arrived to replace it, take a deep breath and relax. This happens to most of us at some point in our lives. Here a few suggestions for finding your new passion that is just around the corner:
Follow your curiosity. When you find yourself wondering about or interested in a topic, learn more about it! Read a book, take a class, or talk to someone with expertise on the topic. Find the time to follow that curiosity nudge and see where it takes you.
Create a joy log. Get out a piece of paper and pen (we’re going old school here) and write down all of the things in your life that bring you joy. Put the list away and come back to it in a few days. Is there anything else you can add to the list? Now, really look at the list and identify the top things that bring you joy. Chances are, your passions are behind the things on your list. Do more of what brings you joy, and before you know it you’ll be following your passion!
Learn something new. What have you always wanted to do, but could never find time for? Do it! Take a class. Read a book. Join a club or group. Your passion is calling!
A few people have known what their life passion would be from their earliest memory. The rest of us figure it out along the way, and often when we least expect it.
Enjoy the journey of discovering your passion; you never know where it will take you.
Oh—and if you’d like to check out my adorable mother, you can find her on:
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Carla Howard is a professional speaker and mentor. Her passion is helping professional women become more influential and promotable so they can rise with confidence and grace. You can learn more about her and the services she offers by visiting her website at TheProfessionalWomansMentor.com. Carla would love to answer your questions in future articles, so please email them to Carla@TheProfessionalWomansMentor.com.