About a decade ago entrepreneurship became a trend and the “in thing” especially because many economies of the world were facing challenging times and things had to change. Millennials rose up to the challenge and started working on their ideas, doing things and gaining results. The mantras changed from, “go to school graduate with a good result so you get a good job” to mantras such as “follow your passion, fire your boss, be your own boss.”
The idea that all things good will fall on your lap as a result of following your passion is false and crazy. Passion is not the reason why Richard Branson started Virgin, Steve Jobs, Apple and Mark Zukerberg, Facebook. They were creating solutions to problems they saw around. I bet you they faced challenges, had doubts but they knew they were solving a problem.
I sense laziness when I hear the follow your passion mantra. If you think following your passion will give you more time to sleep rather than work, wake up mid day in pyjamas and form a bedroom entrepreneur who is making seven figures in a month. You better wake up and smell the coffee or life will be waking you up soon.
Before I started out as an entrepreneur, I heard it said more than a thousand times by many coaches, “Just pursue your passion, atleast be happy while pursuing your career”, as if passion is prerequisite to success to everything in life. You must not be passionate about something to be successful.
When I looked up Passion in the dictionary, I saw definitions such as these:
Any great, strong, powerful emotion.
Strong and barely controllable emotion.
State and outburst of strong emotion.
Feelings are Fleeting
One word that is common in the definitions is Emotion. Emotion is defined as a strong feeling deriving from one’s circumstances, mood or relationship with others.Emotion is a feeling which is far from reasoning and feeling changes with time. You can wake up one day feeling a certain way, quite passionate about what you are doing and how it will change the world and after few months or years, you are looking in a different line of passion because your feeling has changed. This does not allow you create a legacy.
Myopic View of The World
Passion is selfish and self centered with a myopic view of the world. It focuses on the “me-me view of the world.” It is all about you and you alone, with no larger view of the world, how you fit in right and a greater reason why you are in the world and what you should be doing here.
Passion doesn’t always pay the bill
I used to be quite passionate about the make-up industry and I had dreams on how I will make such a big difference in that industry. I was already practicing and making a little money in the industry and because I wanted to leave the sector where I was (for some personal reasons), I made some projections and left the industry. Started out my own business but was jolted back to reality. My passion was not paying my bills. I had to look for other things to do that can sort out the bills. Passion may leave you hungry, angry and frustrated. Passion is not necessarily what you make a living from especially if you are just starting out though I agree some people make money following their passion but I know that when their source of livelihood is threatened as a result of newer trends they abandon ship.
Being Multi passionate
I have been passionate about the project management industry, the procurement industry, the fashion and beauty industry and even the multi level marketing industry. I have spent years in each industry and gained certification too in the first three I mentioned above. This is because my passion changed over time. Many people start out following a passion and it keeps changing over time.
There are many reasons more why you should not follow your passion but in place of passion use these instead.
Find your GPS
GPS is an acronym which means Gift.Purpose.Service
The gift of a man, the bible says, makes way for him. Gift means a thing given willingly and freely to someone. It also means a natural ability or talent. Something given to someone voluntarily.
Every human on the face of the earth has a natural ability or talent given freely to him/her to harness in this life. Talent is a natural aptitude or skill. It is left to you to harness, develop, perfect and optimize it. Gifts are crude but most be refined. Once you master your gift, it will be rewarded with visibility, attention and opportunities. Choose what you have expertise in rather than what you are passionate about because people are willing to pay for expertise.
Many people have made purpose seem like something that is far fetched and difficult to find. The truth is that you don’t find it, it finds you. The thing is that many people feel purpose is something that is very heavy that lands on you or may be revealed to you. Every thing you are doing in life, you should be able to find your why and reasons behind it. How does it fit into the universe, what are you solving, what harm or pain are you eliminating, how are you creating pleasure by making people relaxed or happy in the earth. It must be for the greater good.
There is purpose in every environment you find yourself and every job you are doing. If you find yourself in an environment doing a job that is morally wrong and not serving people and not for the greater good then you have to exit. What legacy are you leaving behind, there is a greater meaning to life and the life of others.
How are you serving the world your brilliance? How are you serving the location where you have found your self? Are you waiting for the government or some “special people” created in a more unique way than you to come and deliver service in your immediate environment? We all have a part to play where we are. Most times we feel our service is needed in another environment and we leave our immediate environment. I don’t have a problem with that, just ensure you are playing your role right and leaving a legacy.
Service finds people out. Play your part in a unique way that makes you stand out. Cultivate your passion while serving. Create solutions to problems around you, maybe that is your main purpose.
Your Gift, your purpose and your service is needed in this life. There is a special joy you derive when you are fitting into the universe and giving the universe more reasons to favor you. I believe passion fleets because their is something greater we should be doing in life, you have a higher calling than the myopic one you create for your self.
If your passion is a gift, your purpose and a service to humanity. Do it with all you have got. If not use your GPS.