Does passion follow action?

In the world of coaching, particularly in career and entrepreneurial coaching, much emphasis is put on the question of what you are passionate about.

It’s a direct result of the “do what you love and the money will follow” paradigm.

I’ve written before (here and here) about why I think this is the wrong question to be focused on.

So many of us are so deeply out of touch with ourselves that we feel passionless, and quite frankly, being asked to name what we are passionate about can create a heightened sense of despair and confusion.

I’ve also submitted to you that you must rather find the things you believe in beyond reason, the dreams that make you cry when you merely contemplate making them real, the visions that humble you with their enormity when you consider the possibility that YOU might be capable of creating them.

When you still don’t know?

What do you do when you STILL don’t know what that thing is?

You listen.

You listen to the voice of your soul. You listen for those little whispers and nudges that tell you exactly what you are supposed to be doing. And then you do it.

Mind you, those nudges won’t be loud. But they will be consistent. You just have to pay attention. Then take action.

Case in point

I have wanted to write for years. Years! And I’ve been “writing,” because I’ve been blogging, writing articles, and creating programs for the last 10 years (oh, hey! I just realized that August was my 10th year in business, I’ll have to come up with a way to celebrate). But I haven’t been writing on the level that I’ve truly wanted to — longer, deeper writing projects.

Finally, I started taking that voice seriously. I realized that I didn’t need to close my business to write, I didn’t need to become suddenly independently wealthy, and I didn’t need someone to wave their magic wand and give me permission to write. I just needed to do it.

In fact, when this came to head for me was when I had been repeatedly asking my Essential Self for guidance. “What do I need to do? What’s in my highest and best interest? What will make me happy?” I was asking, over and over again. The message came back, clearly. She said, “Write like your life depends on it.”

It STILL took me a while to get it. To understand that I didn’t need to radically change my life (see above) in order to “be able” to write. I just had to do it.

Then came the passion

Miraculously, once I began writing, I discovered a shocking, all-consuming fierce passion for it I did not know I had.

In fact, despite the days when writing feels impossibly difficult, no fun at all, and my inner critic is raging at me like a blue meanie on steroids, I still absolutely adore it.

The weirdest part of all of this is that the passion did not kick in, not truly, until I was well into writing regularly — truly DOING IT — day in and day out.

It’s led me to believe that passion follows action, not the other way around.

But I add this caveat: The action must be inspired — it must come from the voice of your soul.

Your turn

Tell me what you think in the comments. You know I love to hear from you. If you’d like some tips about HOW to listen to the voice of your soul, check out this article here.







Do You “Believe Beyond Reason?”

When Joss Whedon’s sci-fi western television series,Firefly,” was cancelled by the Fox network in 2002, the fans of the show were devastated. But Joss told his actors that he wouldn’t give up and that he would find the show a new home.

Eventually, he found that place with Universal Studios in 2005, where they made a feature length movie called Serenity and resurrected the Firefly story.

Joss says about his movie making, “It’s not to make things people like. It’s never to make things people like. It’s only to make things that they love.”

Refusing to Let It Go

What I love about this story (in addition to loving the show unabashedly), is that Joss was so committed to vision and believed in it so much, that he refused to give up. And his fans and cast did too. Joss says about the experience, “[People] fell in love with it a little bit too much to let it go, too much to lay down arms when the battle looked pretty much lost. In Hollywood, people like that are called ‘unrealistic’ … ‘quixotic’ … ‘obsessive’.”

He seems to be totally okay with that. :)

When he presented the first footage of the movie at San Diego Comic Con, he said to the assembled masses of fans, “This movie should not exist. Failed TV shows don’t get made into major motion pictures unless the creator, the cast, and the fans believe beyond reason.”

Isn’t that the most beautiful turn of phrase?

What Do You Believe Beyond Reason?

What are you so ridiculously over the moon about that it makes you giddy just to think about?

The word passion has become so overused in our culture today, I’m not even sure we know what it means anymore.

To most of us it apparently means something like, “What do you think is a realistic way to make money that you would enjoy doing?”

And while that is a useful question when one is paying one’s bills, it is NOT really the same question as “What are you passionate about?”

Seems to me it’s time to change the question.

Let’s start asking, “What do you BELIEVE BEYOND REASON?”

“What do you believe in so deeply, so permanently, so passionately that you can hardly keep yourself in your skin because you are exploding with joy when you consider it?”

“What brings tears to your eyes when you allow yourself to even just consider the possibility that you might be lucky enough to do it for a single minute of your life?”

Do that. And do it as quick as you can.

Because really, why would we do anything else?

Time’s a wastin.’

Watch Joss’ Introduction Here

Your Turn

I always love hearing from you in the comments on my blog.