I’ve been watching a bunch of YouTube videos for the past couple of weeks (yeah, I’m only like 10 years late to the game). While much of what I’ve seen is inspirational and/or thought-provoking, it’s actually made me rather sad. So many people talk about doing what you love, being passionate… and they seem to have it figured out. They’ve been driven to do the things they do from something deep inside. They know what they just can’t live without. They know their passion and they embrace it.
Meanwhile, I have struggled. There are plenty of things I am passionate about: business culture, sustainability, animals, technology. I’ve considered career paths in each, but I struggle with seeing myself completely devoting my life to any one of those. So perhaps I’m not approaching it correctly; perhaps I should be considering how I can balance the many passions I have. That’s not easy though, since if you want to excel at something, you really need to dedicate a lot of time and energy to it. And then I get caught up in the little details, like how I want to avoid working in an office because I love being outside or how I want a somewhat predictable yet flexible schedule so I have more control over when I work. Am I asking for too much?
I guess I’ve been stumped all this time because there might not be something out there that is consistently outdoors at least 20-40% of the time, doesn’t generally require early mornings (or any mornings), allows for and might even require periodic travel, and is pretty stable. The criteria for a job that would be ideal might not be attainable. Then again, I’m probably focusing on the wrong things. After all, when you’re passionate about something, all those other details seem to fall away.
So there it is again, that idea that you need to figure out the passion of your life and do it. If only it were so easy for me to decide what that passion would be. Others make it seem effortless. It’s the thing that they’ve loved since childhood. They don’t even need to think about it. They just start talking about it and their eyes light up, they smile broadly, and they could go on for ages. When I think about what my passion might be, the ones I’ve thought of never hit me like a lightning bolt of inspiration. I haven’t thought, “I must do that. My soul needs that.” That’s sort of the moment of enlightenment I’ve been hoping for.
One of the videos I watched today mentioned the things that come naturally. Everyone has talents where things appear effortless. Mine include being cheerful, sharing, noticing details, and (over)thinking. If you count those as talents. They are certainly the traits I have that come naturally, without a conscious effort. I wish I had a more concrete talent like being artistic or being athletic. Those are easily translated into some type of work that you can pursue. But how does something like ‘being cheerful’ tie in to work? I can apply my skills to any job I have, but are any of them something I can do in and of themselves? Not really.
I envy the people in the world who just know what they want. They may not have had an easy time pursuing their deepest heart’s desire, but they had a goal and direction. I feel like I’m in the center of a glob, with too many spokes leading me outward toward the edge. Which one do I choose to go with?
Have you had this sort of challenge as well? What do you think would help?« Prev：Treatsie July 2015 review Writing confidence：Next »