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Passion vs. Purpose

I'd like to preface this post by letting you know that this wasn't the intended topic of the week. I had a full post created and ready to schedule, and inexplicably, the autosave feature of my hosting platform malfunctioned and deleted literal hours worth of work.

Someone else may have sighed and started from scratch...I'm not one of those people, and while I sat in front of this blank screen with my mouth agape, shocked at this blatant loss of time, I remembered that I'm not one who believes in coincidences. I believe that everything happens for a reason, and I always try to listen to the messages I'm receiving, no matter how much I have to backtrack. I started something new because, obviously, I was on the wrong track.

If this post makes it to your line of sight, know that it was meant to be and maybe it was meant specifically for you.

feet on a sign about passion and purpose

I love to ask people about their passions. Something about the way they light up when talking about what brings them joy gives me such a rush of excitement and gratitude. But sometimes people struggle with their passions and even question what the point of it all is. If this is you, don't fret. I'm here for you! Let's break some of this down and hopefully you'll receive a little more clarity by the end.

Something to keep in mind is that your purpose isn’t always the same as your passion. Their very definitions are different and separate from each other, although you will find that passions will fuel purpose, and that your purpose will be meaningless without a passion for it.

Purpose: an intention or aim; a reason for doing something or for allowing something to happen

Passion: an extreme interest in or wish for doing something, such as a hobby, activity, etc

In other words, your purpose is your WHY. Your contribution. What can I share with the world that will make an impact? What am I here to achieve? What is the point?

Your passion is all about your emotions. What brings me joy and makes me feel alive when I’m in the thick of it? What do I get excited to work on? What would I enjoy doing even if I wasn’t getting paid to do it?

If you’re feeling stuck in the passion department, or maybe if you’ve outgrown something you used to be passionate about, let’s look at some things to keep in mind when trying to discover something new.

  • First things first, try lots of different things! It is my belief that even if I don’t think I’ll be good at something or it’s not something I would typically enjoy, giving it a solid shot might actually prove otherwise. Allow yourself some breathing room in a new activity by working on it regularly for around a month. This gives you the space to be a beginner and maybe get a little better at it, building up a passion for it.

  • Don’t wait on others to be available for you to try new things. Get comfortable being uncomfortable for a little while. If we all waited on someone to make the time to be involved in what we have going on, we’d never get anything done and then we’re sitting on our couches binge watching TV shows while our lives pass us by. It’s important to remember that your passions are for you alone and that not everyone will find joy in the same things. Understanding this will also prevent you from experiencing disappointment in everyone or making you feel like you’re alone. You’re not, but your passions are sacred and may be treated as such.

  • Don’t worry about what others think. We’re all beginners at some point and we need to give ourselves permission to be imperfect and messy and still be proud of the results because hey, we freaking DID something. Get out there and be weird, and smile and wave at the people who judge you because they’re on their way home to binge watch TV shows while their lives pass them by and you’re out in the world making shit happen.

  • Stop looking to the past. ‘Well, I used to be passionate about…’. Well, maybe you aren’t anymore. You are not who you used to be and you do not WANT to be who you used to be, trust me. You are who you are supposed to be at this exact moment in time, and the efforts you make today are building that future you who DOES NOT WANT TO BE THE YOU THAT YOU ARE TODAY.

I hope you kept up with all those yous. There were a lot.

  • If you’re at a loss for ideas, check out this handy dandy article I stumbled across. It’s full of great ideas to get you started! Maybe you’ll discover that you’re multi-passionate and never be bored again! This is me. When I have access to all of my resources, I’m never short on things to do that make me feel good, and nearly all of my passions are solo. You are allowed to be passionate about multiple things and you never have to share those passions with the world unless you want to.

Moving on to Purpose.

humans holding hands

This is something I struggled with nearly my entire life. It wasn’t until this point in my life that I finally realized my own purpose. Yes, I have so many passions that could technically turn into a career, but it took a minute to hone in on which passions would fuel my purpose. I also knew that I was good at doing some things, but because I had no passion for those things, I never wanted to pursue them in a ‘change the world’ kind of way. Today I know that my purpose is to help people change the way they see themselves; to learn to love themselves in the deepest of ways, and I know that this purpose is fueled by my passion for writing and creating.

First of all, your purpose doesn’t have to change the world. I know that now, although I’d love to have a hand in that kind of work. But your purpose will always contribute something to the world, even if it’s somewhere down the line.

Let me explain.

Imagine you don’t really understand your why, or the reason you were put on this Earth. One day you sit down with a friend, a stranger, a child, or anyone who is just looking for an ear and maybe some advice. You hold space for them. Listen without fixing. Advise only when asked.

The next day, or next year, or five years down the line, that person you gave your time to? They’re standing in front of a crowd of people who are searching for their own reasons to live, or they’re having a breakthrough in a journaling or counseling session, or they’re typing on a computer and your words or the space you held for them is being voiced because YOU are EXACTLY what they NEEDED at that moment in time you provided for them.

Your purpose in this world happened without you even realizing it.

You contributed something invaluable to all of humankind.

Thank you for your contribution.

Keep going for the next life you’re going to change.

woman speaking to a crowd

At the end of the day, we all have the same purpose. Do you know what that is?

It’s love.

Giving love, receiving love, creating love. Sending it out to the world. Prayer, intentions, good vibes, singing, dancing, celebrating, painting, writing, building, hugging, kissing, laughing, crying, listening, speaking, living, and breathing.

Love is such an energy and it changes everything. One act of it creates a domino effect and grows, building momentum the longer it goes. This is our contribution. All of ours.

Your only requirement is to never hold it back. Not from yourself. Not from the rest of the world.

Now go and live that purpose to the absolute fullest! If you need some guidance or someone to listen while you sort through your own passions and purpose, you know where to find me.

Take some time over the next few days to think about what makes you feel good inside and please share!

Have a beautiful, passion-filled, purpose-driven week!


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