“I don’t get it, how do people mix passion with their career? I do love to paint but I can’t even think of taking it as a career and doing it all the time. That would be too much for me” – Katherine snapped at me and dismissed my own motto – Align with Passion!
This is not the first time I got such comment, and Katherine is a good friend, so I could see where she was coming from.
She was referring to a commonly known definition of passion – mapping it to some particular hobby or an established career/profession. Metaphorically it is like buying off the shelf solution for your kitchen remodeling project.
In reality, many times your need may not be met by a ready made solution, and that is when you need to read a different definition of passion. To me,
Passion is the set of ingredients that makes the soup of our soul. When some of those ingredients are present (in the right amount :)) in a dish, we relish that more. For example, if some of your soul soup ingredients are creativity, connecting with people and impact, you may notice that you enjoy activities involving out of the box solutions, having meaningful conversation with like-minded people and making a difference for a person, a cause or simply a project at work.
Also notice that it gives you some idea what kind of environment (work, personal, social) would be more favorable for you. Coming from the other end, say if you enjoy painting (art) that means you have some sort of creativity in expressing in a visual form. It doesn’t necessarily mean that is all of your passion. Be mindful about what else excites you and or makes your heart dance. Keep on adding those in your ingredient list.
A client of mine, Annalisa recently did her own exploration and came up with this realization – “if I do art/painting all the time then I don’t get to taste some of my other ingredients of analytic exercise, connecting with people and making a tangible impact. When she brought all those ingredients on the table, it led her to a unique kind of career path she never had thought of before. That is just the beginning. Seeing her energy and creativity in embarking into this path already tells me that I am witnessing the beginning of something very big. Alignment with your passion (all of it) can do a real magic only when you are ready to explore!