When asked what surprises him the most during an interview, the Dalai Lama said,
“Man. Because he sacrifices his health in order to make money. Then he sacrifices money to recuperate his health. And then he is so anxious about the future that he does not enjoy the present; the result being that he does not live in the present or the future; he lives as if he is never going to die, and then dies having never really lived.” –Dalai Lama
Many of us put our lives on hold, thinking we still have plenty of time to do what we truly love. Year after year, we continue to pretend that we are living our lives.
We’ve somehow managed to make ourselves believe that it’s normal to wait 5 long days to actually start breathing again. We complain about our weekdays and live for the weekends because we feel that we have no other choice. We find comfort in our annual leave vacations too, but why do we have to feel alive for only 14-30 days a year?
Each day is a gift and there is always a choice, even if you feel lost and confused. Here’s 6 ways to find your passion and purpose in life.
1. Ask yourself the right questions
What would you happily do without getting paid? What are the things you can do with the utmost ease? What makes you come alive? What subject can you read about without getting bored? Our passion could be staring us right in the face, but we’re just too busy chasing illusions to see it.
2. Know the difference between your hobbies and passions
You might enjoy playing the piano in your spare time, but that doesn’t mean you have to be a pianist. Hobbies are necessary to escape from our hectic schedules, but passion lights up your soul. It’s something you can’t not do or live without.
“If you can’t figure out your purpose, figure out your passion. For your passion will lead you right into your purpose.” –Bishop T.D. Jakes
3. Reconnect with your inner child
Try to remember the things that made you smile when you were young. Did you spend a lot of time writing short stories? Did you enjoy sketching? Sometimes being an adult makes us forget the simple things that truly bring us joy.
4. Find like-minded people
Once you have more or less discovered your true passion, find people who you can relate to. It could be a writers’ group, poetry club, or martial arts community. Whatever it is, your kind of tribe will help inspire and motivate you to make your dreams come true.
5. Be open about investing time and money
You might need to take some classes to learn a new skill. Maybe you have to start off by providing your services for almost nothing to see if you like it. You probably even have to learn how to save money to start a business. Nothing is easy at first, but it will be worth it in the long run.
6. Get help from your family and friends
You’d be surprised, they probably know you better than you know yourself. Try asking what they think you should do. You don’t have to follow what they say, but sometimes, you can get some pretty good ideas based on your interests alone.
Finding your passion will not happen overnight, you just have to take action. It’s not about what you’ll get, but what you can give. Think about everything you will regret at the end of your life and make things happen!