‘What are you passionate about?’ and ‘Follow your passion’ are phrases I’ve said more than I care to admit. I understand why I did and still sometimes do, but I disagree with myself now.
Passion usually arrives fourth or fifth. Not first.
Before passion opportunity arrives – a chance to do something. The what is irrelevant, we simply have an opportunity to do something. Bake cookies, clean the house, write a blog, read a book, build a tree house, take a course, manage a project and so on.
Curiousity and interest arrive next. In our doing, we become curious and interested in exploring a part of it more. Maybe it’s a rabbit hole taking us to a new wonderful world. Or our doing leads to impact and feedback from others that spurs us on to do the thing again and again.
Curiousity and interest take our hands and lead us to practice and repetition (P&R). It is through P&R we develop competence and sometimes expertise. And once a tiny bit of competence shows up, the magic moment occurs. Passion arrives and we feel like the party starts.
Passion is a bit snobbish as it rarely comes into the party if competence is not present.
And yet, most of us only want passion and don’t let the others in the door first.
Change makers understand this and do the work.
Photo by Phil Botha
I agree Amos, passion is not the beginning it is an outcome. Typically based on the aspect of resources and opportunities. As such it is a word that is biased towards those who already have passion – a pradox. But one understood by recognising the path that is necessary, as you point out.
We are often passionate about those things we are good at or have been supported in or have had the opportunity to develop skills in.
I have seen people rejected becasue they could not exhibit passion – perhaps a form of discrimination as the articulation of the emotions can be culturally bound.
Thanks Harminder – I especially like ‘We are often passionate about those things we are good at or have been supported in or have had the opportunity to develop skills in.’