What if I Followed the Wrong Passion?

As a kid, I wanted to be a million different things: an astronaut, a vet, a software engineer, an Olympic swimmer, an Olympic softball pitcher, a handball champion, and more. Eventually, I settled on learning and developing my softball game. It worked out for me.

I carried my passion for softball into coaching the sport, continuing to study what I thought I wanted to work on in the future — IT and business management. It’s what made sense to me.

But something happened a couple years ago. I realized that passion was no longer something I wanted to be doing. I didn’t see myself plugging code into a computer all day or spending time in the sun (which I vehemently dislike) helping others learn the game of softball (this part I still enjoyed). The travel was killing me as well.

Growing up, everyone tells you to follow your passion so that’s what I did. No one ever tells you to cultivate that passion; it’s something you do on your own once you find out you like something. That’s how I approached softball and business. I worked extra hours to make sure I succeeded — because I wanted to. I loved it. That’s not exactly what I did with IT. Once I started learning more, I realized it wasn’t really what I wanted to do for the rest of my life.

Following your passion presupposes you know what that passion is. I think I assumed because I liked computers and that the profession made good money, I would enjoy the work. I confused excitement or vague interest as passion.

Photo by James Wheeler on Pexels.com

I was brought back to one of my favorite quotes; the last words Matt Smith spoke as The Doctor.

“We all change, when you think about it. We’re all different people all through our lives. And that’s OK, that’s good, you gotta keep moving, so long as you remember all the people that you used to be.”

— Doctor Who

If the only constant is change, why can’t our passions change as well? The more I branched out, the more I started to play with new ventures. The first successful passion I cultivated was minimalism.

The Clarity in Minimalism

Suddenly I had time I didn’t know existed and I worked on cultivating my skills as a photographer. That one didn’t quite pan out. I still enjoy it, I know I’m not the best, but I won’t call it my passion. It’s something I like to do but probably won’t invest in cultivating that at the present moment.

Finally, I found writing. This. This was the calling that was missing from my life. Things became clear and I knew what I wanted to do next. So, for the last year, I have been cultivating this passion into something feasible for my future.

Photo by Aldiyar on Pexels.com

The best lesson I learned was that I didn’t have to be stuck doing something I was no longer passionate about. I found a way to restructure my life to better align with who I wanted to be. I figured out who my future self would be and took the steps to get there.

You Don’t Have to Compare Yourself to Others

I still cherish my past. My history makes me unique, and adds to the experience I develop as a writer. I have a unique take, and the same can happen for you. We all have to keep moving, and remembering who we used to be helps shape us for the future.

So, are you trying to find a new outlet? What sort of things have you always wanted to try? I dare you to try one new thing and make that declaration to yourself. It’s okay if it doesn’t work out… but what if it does?

As a minimalist, I hate spam. That’s why I only want to provide valuable content to you. Join my newsletter and let’s discover passions together.

Even better, get the first five chapters of my first book, Soul Forgotten, when you sign up!

The Winter Writer Newsletter

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