My youngest daughter Kellie and I had a conversation the other morning that reminded me of something I learned from a book I recently devoured called, “Big Magic” by Elizabeth Gilbert. I have always told my kids that no matter what they do in life that they must follow their passion. Although that sounds smart and dandy, what if you do not have a passion yet at age 21? OR, what if you don’t have it at 41? If my mom would have told me at 21 to follow my passion, I would have thought in a way different context than she did and goodness knows where I would be today, LOL.
I use to be a High School Counselor, and I can truly tell you that when I told kids to follow their passion all they heard was, “blah blah blah, another adult telling me what to do”. If I could go back in time and see those kids again, I would teach them to be curious and investigate things that interest them. I would not advise them to drop out of school and open a gym if they were interested in fitness, but what I would advise them to do is just keep digging and explore it. Be present with it. I know for my daughter, Kellie, it stresses her out big time to think about what her passion is. It’s like they feel pressured to come up with an answer when, indeed, they should not have to think of it but wait till they feel it. We taught our youth that the answers to life have to be there the moment they graduate. I am very sad for this direction we are heading. I applaud Elizabeth for coming out and sharing with us this new way to look at things. Be curious, it is available to each of us every day. It does not matter what education level you have, your nationality, your religious beliefs – we all have this inner curiosity that we have suppressed for fear it is a waste of time and not helping us make our fortune or define our self. If I could go back in time, I would tell my two daughters, Kristen and Kellie, to just go “DO”. “DOING” creates opportunities for interests to present themselves. I would encourage them to try everything and anything. I would not be the scared mom that held them back because I was afraid they might get hurt or it was something I did not like. I would expose them to more travel. And if we could not afford that, I would rent movies and read them books.
Following this curiosity is not just for the young. I am now 51, and I can honestly say that I am not at all the person I was 10 years ago. I woke up one day and was truly curious about life, so I just started saying YES and going for it. I trusted the universe and it has not let me down yet. My curiosity has led me to my passion. Today in my practice I make a point to help my clients explore their curiosity. I give them permission to just “DO” Are you “DOING”? There is some passion in all of us, we just have to start looking and “DOING” so we can be led to it.