In my previous post, “How do you live your dream if you haven’t discovered it yet?” I shared a lot of my personal journey of self discovery through trial and error.
The thing is, there is no room for discovery or error, if there is no trial. Lack of trial seems to be a common thing these days.
I get to work with a lot of young people. I’m lucky to help them with their development in the work place and sometimes it might even influence their personal lives.
These individuals are truly some of the most intelligent and creative people I’ve ever known. Filled with infinite potential and destiny. In some of our sit down conversations, I often ask, “What are you passionate about?”
So many of these incredibly talented people just don’t know.
A lot of them are fresh out of high school or still in college, trying to figure out who they are and what they like. Some of them are still living out the plan their parents had for them.
But few have their own plan or hopes and dreams. Mostly due to not having any specific passion to give them direction.
So what does one do when they find themselves in this place? How does one take action before you are 35 and realize you have been going the wrong direction for more than a quarter of a century?
I’m quite confident that by the time you are 35, you will definitely begin thinking about what you might have done differently, earlier on, to get your life in a better place (and by “better” I mean more fulfilling and possibly more financially secure). I’m not even 35 yet and I already think about that stuff. Not in a “have regrets” sort of thinking, but a realistic, self-assessment, how can I do better sort of way.
Truly, I would say 25 is a good time to start getting serious about pursuing what you are passionate about (If you started your journey even younger, even better). This means you’ve had at least a quarter of a century to figure it out. But what if you haven’t? What if you’re 45 and still haven’t? That’s ok too.
So let’s get down to it. How does one become serious about finding their passion?
Well, I think it’s by not taking things too seriously. This seems counter productive, I know. But, if you don’t take things too serious, you can be adventurous.
Going on adventures requires courage, optimism and grace for when you mess up. The great thing about our early twenties is that we are still ignorant enough to be reckless. We still don’t quite understand true consequences of our risks that we take. Which I believe to be a very valuable attribute.
We don’t quite understand huge failure yet, because we probably haven’t had much of it. So without these points of reference to hold us back from risk and discovery, we are still free. Free to explore. Free to find ourselves. Free to choose whatever we desire.
If you don’t consider yourself a “spring chicken” anymore, again, that’s ok. We just need to be very intentional about not allowing fear to hold us back (check out a previous post on fear, here).
I consider myself very fortunate to have been raised by parents who taught me to believe that I could do anything that I wanted. So they let me be who I needed to be to discover that. They allowed me to go on adventures and just disappear to pursue life to my heart’s content (But of course, I still needed to be home by 11PM curfew).
Going on an adventure of life discovery requires one very important thing.
If you have a random idea, say “Yes.”
Another person has a random idea, and asks for your involvement, say “Yes.”
If you have not yet invested in other things, you have nothing to lose and everything to gain. Insight, wisdom, knowledge, and experience.
Over time, each adventure will allow you to discover the things you are passionate about and the things that you aren’t. Often, it will end up being things that were right in front of us, all along.
It’s never too late.
So, get up.
Start your life’s adventure now by saying “Yes.”
What have you been reluctant to say “yes” to? What’s an adventure you have always wanted to go on? How has saying “yes” helped you discover your passion? Please share your story in the comment section below.