How often have you made compromises in your life and ended up somewhere where you didn’t want to be? How often have you put your dreams on hold, thinking that you’d pick them up at a later point?
There’s always something else that has to be done. We have to ask ourselves if something really has to be done, or if we’re avoiding something, because deep down we’re afraid. We’ve been told that we can’t follow our passion and make a living. There are a lot of naysayers around us, but are they right? Are they happy? In the end, all that matters is how you feel inside.
I’m not talking about asking the question superficially. I mean really asking yourself if you’re following your passion. Are you doing what brings you joy?
What Does It All Mean?
What does following your passion mean anyway? The only perspective I can give you is my own, but for me, following my passion means doing what I feel ridiculously excited about. For example, Last year I spent 3-months learning a new language. For those three months, my passion was learning Spanish and nothing else.
You’re probably a lot like me in the way that you have many passions, and many interests. That’s excellent, but the downside is that it can paralyze you. It’s easy to feel overwhelmed and afraid of losing out. There seems to be so many roads you could take, but the truth of the matter is that if you don’t focus on something, you’ll end up doing nothing.
Doing what makes me happy is simply doing what I feel like doing. You may have a job to go to. You may have a family to take care of, but that doesn’t mean you can’t follow your passion. It’s not an all or nothing kind of thing. We can all make excuses, but the people that are truly happy are those who have taken the jump and are doing what they really want to do.
These people are not super-human. They are not fearless, and most of them feel exactly the way you do. You may not be able to go after your passion full-time, but there’s really no rush. Every journey starts with one step, and if you don’t start now, when will you?
How to Follow Your Passion
In early 2009, I went from being a professional poker player to doing something I was a lot more passionate about, which was building websites and writing. In reality, I started trying to make a living online in 2007, but I failed miserably. I didn’t give up though, because I couldn’t stand the thought of not being able to do what I loved.
Following your passion is a step-by-step process. As long as you’re moving in the right direction, you’re making progress. There’s no doubt about the fact that doing what you want to do takes hard work, but I don’t see myself as having any other options. Besides, I love the work, so I don’t mind working hard.
If you’re serious about making it work, you will succeed. It took me a while to realize what worked and what didn’t, but in the end I was able to start making a living online, which has allowed me an immense amount of freedom.
Right now, I can live and work from anywhere in the world, and it’s all thanks to my perseverance. I’m not saying this to boast. I want to encourage as many people as possible to start taking steps towards their passion.
When I first started, I was confused out of my mind, and to be completely honest, I still am confused about a lot of things, but I do my best, and I keep moving forward. As I began building my own blog, and my own websites, I realized that the best way forward was one step at a time, one day at a time. You can plan and learn as much you want, but nothing really happens until you start taking action.
We’re all afraid, worried and confused. It’s normal. You can acknowledge those feelings and move forward.
Even now, when I am making a living through doing what I love, my mind is constantly trying to worry. The mind will always create new problems.
It doesn’t matter if you’re poor or rich, if you let it, your mind will create problems, because that is how the mind works.
Sooner or later, you have to ask yourself how much longer you can put off going after your passion. The reality is that you can start following your passion today, if you really want to.
Ask yourself what you can do right now. It doesn’t matter what it is. It may even be the wrong step, but that “wrong” step will be a stepping stone towards success.
So ask yourself: “Am I really doing what I want?” If the answer is no, it’s time to change something.
|Written on 2/02/2011 by Henri Junttila. Henri writes at Wake Up Cloud, where he helps people turn their passion into a thriving lifestyle business. When you feel ready to take action, get his free special report.||Photo Credit: boettner|