In 2016, I quit my job, living in London town, with events popping left right and centre I had to figure out what I was going to do.
All my life I was led to believe that if you get a good job, good man, and somewhere to rest your head at night then you will gain some level of happiness and be alright… I always had some creative baby growing inside of me, always loved music and I knew that, that kind of life that I was led to believe would make me happy, was NOT the key to my happiness.
Challenging work and a good team wasn’t enough for me anymore. The missing piece was passion. I didn’t feel anything for the work I was doing pre-2016 so I had to get out of there and follow what my heart was saying to me.
I started doing some research on purpose and passion. I listened to audiobooks and read articles constantly looking for a way to figure me out and find a way to start. The resources all pointed to similar things: asking ourselves deep, thought-provoking questions. I had several conversations with my best friends and they really helped me identify my strengths. I had no laptop until 2017 so I was using my friends laptop and going to the community centre to start building my blog.
Reasons and Seasons.
There is always a reason or a season. As soon as I made that shift, things started to feel right and certain things aligned.
In short, I had started to be invited to loads of events, started meeting people that wanted to help me grow. Believe it or not, the struggle for money was making me ill, then I ended up being in a car crash that knocked my confidence and felt like I was back at square one. The compo came in and I invested in my mac and from that day forward I became married to my passion. Money wasn’t really an issue after that, I was doing something that felt really good inside and that outweighed a lot of the need I had for materialistic things that ultimately only made me happy for 5 minutes.
Throughout the process of finding my passion and how to lead a life with that at the fore front there were so many questions I had to ask myself. These are some questions I used and they are designed to make us pause and think deeply about the answers. We don’t often give ourselves the luxury of time and solitude to figure things out. But when we do, we have the power to transform our lives.
1. What makes you forget to eat and pee? In other words, what do you get so lost in that you lose track of time?
Often, the answer to this question comes in the form of a hobby or activity. It doesn’t have to be something we are currently doing; it can be something we did in a previous job or before we had kids. Think about something you could do for hours, that when you look at the clock, you can’t believe how much time has passed.
For me, the answer to this question was creating and writing. Creating in the form of blog posts, writing articles, making flyers, documents, posters… Anything that tapped into my creative side and put my ideas to paper. The use of colours and learning new creative techniques.
2. What can you talk about for hours that when you talk about it, you light up?
The answer to this question will give you a huge hint about what excites you. We often think about our passions as “what wakes us up in the morning,” but I like to think about passion as what wakes up our souls. This could be something you like to teach others, a topic you enjoy debating, or something you continuously research or read about.
I can talk about music and the need for humanity to be more kind to each other for hours. Seriously, a great day for me would be one where I spend the entire day talking to people about these things and having a good old debate and understanding where others view points come from.
3. What did you love to do as a child?
This is one of my favorite questions because the answers are so surprising and so different for everyone. We’ve all experienced our childhood differently, so we all collect different knowledge and meaning from it. Regardless of how we feel about our overall childhood, there is something we can take away from it. Think about how you played as a child. Another way to look at this question is to think about how your childhood self would view your adult self.
As a child, I loved writing stories. I remember when we got our very first family computer. I spent hours on Microsoft Word, knocking out stories and adding unnecessary amounts of clip art as illustrations. I also loved reading, I had a passion for adjectives and words that brang stories to life. Words that sent my imagination into a frenzy.
4. If you could be remembered for 3 things after you die, what would they be?
It can be difficult to narrow down our responses to just three things. Many of us want to be remembered as a caring friend, a devoted parent or a compassionate giver. If we give ourselves the space to think deeper, we can think about what kind of legacy we want to leave behind. Beyond the family-and-friend bullet points, think about what you will do for the world, what can you give to the world that is authentically you.
I want to be remembered for being brave, for being creative and not dimming myself down if my light is too bright. I want to be remembered for empowering women to just be.
5. If you were financially secure, what would you do with your time?
This is a fun exercise in visualization. Picture yourself on a typical day in your financially secure future. What are you doing? Who are you with? Where are you? These questions help to solidify the vision in your mind. Got the picture? Use it to determine what you would do if money was not a barrier.
If I was financially secure, I would travel the world, living in a different country each year. I would learn everything I could about the culture of each country and talk to women about their careers and lives. I would write about my experiences and interactions in the hopes of empowering and inspiring women.
6. What is working well for you in your current life & career? What do you find fulfilling, meaningful, enjoyable and important?
These last few questions are helpful because they allow us to assess our current situation and surroundings. Not all aspects of our lives need to be changed, nor do we need to change something every year. These questions help us discover what we want more of in our lives, or at least the pieces we want to keep intact.
For me, at the time I asked myself this question, I liked the freedom of making my own hours, not having to check in with a boss every day and being able to create my own strategic plan for what I wanted to accomplish. I also found educating and training myself on new topics to be meaningful and important.
7. What isn’t working for you? What drains you, makes you stressed, or wastes your time?
This final question helps us determine what we want less of in our lives or what we want to get rid of altogether. When we feel stuck or unhappy, it helps to think about how much time we spend on activities that we don’t enjoy, and if we are willing to take that with us in the future.
My commute was the biggest waste of my time and the aspect of my job that drained me the most. I always felt like I could use that time much more productively. I knew I didn’t want to have a long commute in my future.
Finding your passion in life is realistic and attainable.
If you’re feeling stuck, unhappy or unfulfilled, I urge you to think about these questions. Take some time to sit with your thoughts, then grab a piece of paper and start writing.
Our passion can lead us to our purpose. It can shape our decisions, lead us to greater happiness, and help us leave a legacy we’re proud of.
Stay safe and take care,