Why You Shouldn’t Follow Your Passion (and What You Should Do Instead)
When people say, “Just follow your passion” do you look at them blankly, thinking: I have no idea what that is! So they press on, “Your passion — you know, that thing that you just love doing; that thing that you can’t wait to jump out of bed in the morning for?”
And, still, nothing.
If your passion isn’t immediately obvious to you, don’t worry. It’s not immediately obvious to most of us. There are very few who have known since they were young what it is that they are passionate about and want to spend their lives doing. But, they’re out there.
For the rest of us mere mortals, being told to simply follow your passion can be unwelcome and even uncomfortable advice (no matter how well-meaning the person offering the advice may be).
So if the search for your passion is stressing you out — stop. That’s right, stop searching for your passion. That is not to say that you can sit on your couch eating Doritos for the rest of your life! Oh, no! Instead of looking for your passion, try this:
What are you curious about? Maybe you always wanted to try your hand at writing a book, but you can’t seem to find the time. Or maybe you’ve been toying with the idea of training to be a yoga teacher, but you’ve been putting it off. Or maybe you’ve always wanted to try baking homemade croissants, but never got around to it.
Whatever it is that sparks your curiosity, do that.
Ask yourself, “What is the worst-case scenario if I give this curiosity a go?” You find you don’t love it, so you quit, right? And the best-case scenario? You follow this curiosity, love it, and over time it develops into a passion.
Growing up, I didn’t know what I wanted to do with my life or what I was passionate about. I wasn’t one of the lucky few that do.
I am doing what I do today — and I am happy to say that I am very passionate about what I do — by following my curiosity.
Curiosity led to me study psychology and develop an interest in what makes us as humans tick.
Curiosity led me to work as an international flight attendant and travel the world.
Curiosity led me to study health and wellness coaching.
And curiosity led me to the idea of living a big life and all that entails.
And that curiosity grew into a deep passion.
When I was in the thick of it, trying to look forward to the future I couldn’t see where my curiosity would lead. But I am so thrilled that I followed my curiosity when I did, because eventually, it led me to my passion.
So, lovely, don’t get caught up in striving to find your passion. Follow your curiosity instead, and have faith that the rest will follow.
Now it’s your turn! In the comments tell me what you are curious to try?