By Jay Forte, Coach, Author, Educator
One of my greatest passions is food. Shopping for the right ingredients, growing it directly, cooking it, serving it – it’s all in my passion area. I can’t sit through a movie, but I can binge watch cooking shows all day. I’m passionate about learning what other cultures eat, trying new foods, tasting new spices, reading cookbooks and testing cutlery. There’s a reason why the blog is named “Know Your Ingredients.”
Key to living a life you love is connecting to the things that activate your passions. Passions are your guideposts in life. They help you sort through all that is available for the things that get your attention. It’s your passion that fuels you to get out of bed early to train for a marathon, to write music, to work with special needs kids, to become a foster parent or to actively support an important personal cause, like World Food Day.
Passions encourage you to imagine, dream and invent. When you are passionate about something, you allow yourself to push the edges, to reach for more. Passions encourage people to start their own businesses, study abroad, challenge wrongs, develop new skills, invent new technology, go to college or even work on solving global problems. The list of possibilities that your passions can inspire is limitless.
Since passions are key to a great and happy life, how do you discover them? Consider these questions to become more aware and focused on developing your passions:
- When I wish time would stand still, what am I doing?
- When I have or make time, or have extra money, where do I spend it?
- When I am my happiest, what am I doing?
- When I feel energized and excited, what am I doing?
Remember, your passions are unique to you. Don’t try to figure out why you love cooking, stamp collecting, marathons, football, printmaking, car restoration or searching for antiques. Simply make time and space to connect to what activates your inner energy.
But be aware that there is a difference between an interest (low energy) and passion (high energy). Both are important in life, but it’s your passions that raise the bar. They are the frosting – the sweet part (see, everything comes back to food for me) – of a great life.
A final thought. You don’t need to explain or justify your passions to others. What activates your passions is personal to you. And you don’t need to take on others’ passions as yours if they do not carry the same energy for you.
Your passions are part of what makes you unique. It’s up to you to discover and develop them to bring great value to your version of life.