Finding Your Passion and Avoiding That ‘Sunken’ Place

Periodically, I have people to ask me about finding their passion and how I found my passion. Well, the answer is not always easy. We would love to think that finding our passion is easy as walking outside and smelling fresh air. But, it does not come that easy.

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Let me take myself as an example. For myself, early in my life, I found that I had many passions. I realized that I was not one of those people who could be placed in a box or a singular category. I wanted to do different things and not be confined to a ‘one and done’ career track. Actually, thinking about that approach makes me want to throw up something deep from within my stomach (which I don’t even know what that could be, but I would just feel like I want to throw up) and also go to a ‘sunken’ place. I am not sure how others have done it that way, but it would seem depressing.

I defied traditional advice in sticking to one field. I was told that I needed to stick to one field in creating my brand. I am glad I went against this advice, as the economy and world has changed so rapidly and still is changing that more skills and experiences are better and desired than one singular type of skill or experience. The economic demands are now a ‘jack or jill (or they or z) of all trades’ and the trend is not reversing itself anytime soon.

So, how did I expand my experiences and pursue my passions? I pursued my passions outside my work through taking on projects and volunteering and just doing the things I liked. Then, over time, my passions became a part of my work and not necessarily ‘the work.’ Those passions were also a part of my personality.

Believe it or not, most employers today want people who have lives outside of work. If you don’t, this could be a scary thing for some employers, as stress and conflict could creep into the work environment for the person. This is why there are employers who ask those interview questions ‘what are things you do to handle stress or just relax.’ If you don’t have anything you do, then what are you doing? You probably want to get something very quickly. I mean ‘like right now.’ Yeah, you, what are you waiting for? Bye.

So, for those of you who get it, finding your passion ultimately will make you happier and feel less like you are in a ‘sunken’ place or stuck in a time warp of despair.

Associate Professor. Author. Tech Enthusiast. TEDx Speaker. Former UN Delegate for WILPF-US.

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