Convert your passion into profession and your life becomes a celebration.
Passion is an intense emotion, a compelling enthusiasm, or a burning desire for something. It is something you cannot live without. That is the intensity! It leads to a feeling of unusual excitement, enthusiasm, or compelling emotion; a positive affinity or love, towards a subject. Passion is something that you love doing. It gives you pleasure. It is interesting and it relaxes you even when it is hard ‘work’.
Jack Welch calls it the ‘area of destiny’, which is the very rich territory at the intersection of what you are uniquely good at and what you love to do. That’s where you should be building your profession.
The catch is that it is not always easy to identify your passion. Sometimes, it is hidden. You need to put in the effort to discover it.
Let’s move on to ‘work.’ If our work is matched with our passion, life, as Godfather Don Corleone said before he breathed his last, is beautiful. You enjoy your work. There is no time for boredom and there is no pressure, just thrill.
If we were to break down the activities, we do in a day; it would broadly be as under for most people:
- Sleep – 7 hours
- Work – 10 hours
- Commuting – 2 hours
- Routine work like meals, bath, and change, among others – 3 hours
- Unforeseen – 2 hours
This shows that for most people there is close to no time to enjoy life, except on weekends. Of all the above you will find that the only time you can consciously enjoy more is your work hours. And if you convert your passion into your profession, you are doing what you love doing all the time. A person in this space is indefatigable.
To students I say, please convert your passion into a profession. To those who are already working, “If you could not marry the girl you loved, please start loving the girl you married.”
I know of two brothers Mohit and Rohit, who were crazy about video games when they were kids. They would spend all their pocket money playing games, and would even pinch cash from their mom’s purse for that extra bit. Later in life, they landed a job in a leading gaming company that needed people who loved gaming passionately. The brothers were tasked with the responsibility of identifying bugs in video games. They did this the whole day and worked overtime too. Instead of spending money on games, they now earned out of them.
Their hobby is now their profession.
My son, Aneesh, developed a passion for photography while he was in Class XII. He went on to make it a profession. I never saw him getting tired. He was doing what he loved and would spend the whole night if it was necessary. Passion was driving him.
So, the key to happiness is to make your passion the driver of your life. When you are passionate about something and have a strong desire to achieve it, nothing can stop you. The universe rearranges itself to create a conducive atmosphere for what you seek.
In 2013, I attended a workshop by John Foppe, a motivational speaker who was born without arms. He said something interesting about a passion that struck me with unusual force.
He said that passion by itself is not as strong as it is when added to the mission.
If you can identify a goal, a mission, related to your passion, and drive towards your mission with passion, you can create a great life filled with joy, creativity, and personal and professional fulfillment.
My son turned his passion for photography into his profession. He pursued it for a few years after which he gave it up to switch tracks and start his own business. This is again connected to another of his passions – fine wines.
Well, nothing wrong with such switches.
Switching tracks in this manner and changing your mind is perfectly fine. The point I am making is that he would have operated out of a space of greater clarity had he added mission to his passion, and said, “In the next five years, I will be the #1 photographer in India, or I will establish a record in the Guinness Book of World Records or win five international contests in the next two years.”
Success is not the Key to Happiness, Happiness is the Key to Success.
If you love what you are doing, You will be Happy and Successful
Remember, your workday will take most of your waking hours. Design a career where those hours will be filled with intensely joyful discoveries, challenges that are fun to meet, and people who add value to your life. It is this or long hours doing stuff you don’t like, with people you would rather not meet, and creating products or delivering services that you have no emotional attachment to.
The choice is clear and it is for you to make.
Are you up for the challenge?
This is an excerpt from my Book, “Design Your Life” and is available on Amazon https://goo.gl/axvtnw