…But what if we don’t know what our passion is?
“What am I doing? How did I get here? Do I even like doing this? Is this me?” I think we all have moments in life when we reach a stopping point and second-guess our decisions. I’ve been there numerous times over the course of my life, starting in high school. I remember one particular scenario when I was questioning whether or not to accept a collegiate volleyball scholarship. Which university should I choose? What happens if I get injured? Is it too far away from home? Not far enough? Wait, do I even like sports?
Though I’ve had moments of clarity, joy and satisfaction, the lingering self-questioning has been a continued thread throughout my life. I am a person that wants to live a full life, experience as much as I can and have a helluva lot of fun doing it, so I am not surprised that I wake some mornings asking myself, “what else is there? Am I doing what I love? Is this the path I should be on?” Recently my therapist asked me what makes me happy. “What are you passionate about?” she questioned. I sat quietly for a minute as my mind filed and filtered through my past – likes and dislikes – searching for an answer. As hard and deep as I looked, I couldn’t quite answer her. There are many things in this world that excite me and make me happy, but hearing the word ‘passionate’ struck me harder than I expected. When I was younger, I would rattle off numerous things that I was passionate about – my family, love, fashion, helping others, nature, health, travel, music. But as I move through life and live different experiences first-hand, my passion for certain things changes. It’s not that I am less passionate, per se, rather I am more focused. With more experience comes more knowledge and self-awareness, leading to sense of self and honing in on our passions. We are also ever-evolving and constantly learning more about ourselves. The added knowledge we have means more defined passions or letting go of past ‘passions.’
My friends happen to be artists, musicians, fashion designers, photographers, and business owners – all with distinct paths, clear visions, and focused passion. Sometimes I am hard on myself for not knowing my “passion path” and meandering on off-road detours. But when I find myself starting to second-guess past decisions that may have caused my deviation off-course, I have to remind myself that it all takes time. Life is a process of learning, experiencing, living through mistakes, making hard decisions, and exploring our passions. It’s one exhausting, fun, painful, and joyful ride, but it’s our ride and we will get there, in our own time.
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