Advice to Find Your Passion

I always thought finding your passion, your dream, was supposed to look like this: there is one thing you’re great at, that you love, and you run with it.

My problem was that I was good at a lot of things but not great at anything, and I loved too many things. So I spent time doing all of them.

How on earth was I supposed to find my passion like this?

Then a few years ago, my pastor asked me this question: where do you see yourself in 10 years?

For most of my life I knew where I wanted to be: married with kids in our own house and working in a job I loved (which I thought was zoology).

None of that had happened, though, and I was left with no idea where I saw myself in 10 years.

I told my pastor: I don’t know.

He said: You know, I get really worried when people can’t tell me where they’ll be in ten years because it means they don’t have a focus.

That hit hard. I didn’t want to wander aimlessly through life, but his words showed me that’s exactly what I was doing. I wanted a focus.

I told him: But there are too many things I love and too many things I want to do.

He basically said that to live any dream, sometimes you have to say no to other dreams. Not because those other dreams are bad, but because it splits your focus.

On his Storyline Blog, Donald Miller talks a lot about the importance of having a clear focus and purpose in life. It helps guide decisions and what you spend your time doing. It tells you what to say yes to and what to say no to.

I realized that by choosing to follow all my dreams, all I was really doing was choosing none of them.

I wanted to live a dream. One of them would be enough. So I went on a journey to find my one dream – my one passion – to focus on.

How did I find my passion? I looked back at my life and saw that there was one thing that has been a constant in my life: writing. It has always been a secret dream of mine to be a writer.

It took a bit of pain to follow this dream because it’s always hard to let go of things you love. But once I started focusing on this passion and following this dream, it feels freeing because it feels like I’m doing what I’m meant to do. I’m also seeing progress, which I wasn’t seeing before when my focus was split.

One of the best things I did was write a Writing Bucket List, so instead of dreaming about what I want to do, I actually do it.

It took me a lot of time and wrestling to come up with an answer, but my pastor’s question and advice was the catalyst that helped me find and follow my passion.

Side note: I didn’t stop doing all the things I love. I still draw, dance, and make time for music. It’s just that now I know writing is my focus and I can combine what I love with writing. I especially love combining writing with art. But if I had to choose between the two, writing gets my full attention. For example, I spend money on writing courses rather than art courses if money and time is tight.

Where do you want to see yourself in ten years? Go for it!

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16 thoughts on “Advice to Find Your Passion

  1. The main thing about finding your passion is asking yourself, “In all that I choose to do, what gives me the most satisfaction and enjoyment?” When we choose to do things that gives us great enjoyment, it will never feel like a job because we are at peace with the duties we have chosen.

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  2. I have the same passion as you do, to publish a real book that is just mine. I currently have stories in four anthologies and a host of short stories, but a book is my goal.

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  3. don’t listen to your pastor
    people who know where they will be in 10 years are boring and don’t know how to go wth the flow
    everything depends on th opportunities you are given and making the most of them
    the younger you are , the more things you should be trying out

    la vie n’a pas besoin d’un but, elle est un but elle-meme
    life doesn’t need a purpose, it is a purpose in itself.

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    1. The question didn’t actually help me, I guess. It was more the heart of it that felt like a slap in the face. I was flailing with my life and until I was confronted, I would have flailed the rest of my life, I reckon. I was saying no to opportunities because I was scared of saying no to others. Not anymore. I actually need purpose to feel content. That’s why I love goals, lists, etc. They give me so much joy! I really can’t stand the feeling of wasting my time. I need purpose daily, every second of every day – I thrive from it. Love it! Might have something to do with my personality as an ISTJ -duty-fulfiller – hehe!

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      1. I am similar to you in that way. Flailing around, waiting.. Goals and lists give me purpose and direction too. They help me get where I want to go and looking back, I don’t regret goals I didn’t follow through with, I regret time I wasted aimlessly waiting for some special opportunity.I feel you can have a 5-10 year plan and still go with the flow. You just have a focus while you go with the flow and that makes all the difference to me! 🙂

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        1. Totally agree, I love goals but definitely gotta be flexible and go with the flow too and take opportunities. I’d take goals over doing nothing any day – hehe! But I know some people find goals very restrictive and they find they make them irritable. I get irritable when I don’t have a goal. Gotta love diversity!

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    1. That’s it. I found it so helpful. Sorting out the priorities can be scary and painful, but having focus makes me feel so much better and I get so much more done. It can also be a long process. It took me a while to figure out but was definitely worth a bit of deep thinking and the time it took.

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  4. Love this! I’ve been in the same boat (and probably still am…) where I love too many things but can’t focus on one and fully excel at it. Although the more I write, the more I enjoy it and begin to focus on it, like you said! Plus the beauty of writing is that you can write about other things you like to do, keeping them part of life but spending most of your time writing. Win win 🙂

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