Wednesday, March 21, 2012

What Are You Passionate About?

Cover of "The Passion Test: The Effortles...Cover via AmazonBy Linda Binns

For some people this question feels frustrating and overwhelming. What do you do if you've always lived your life doing what other people want and being who other people expect you to be? What do you do if you've never had the opportunity to explore your passions or to get excited about anything?

What do you do if your wants, needs and desires have been beaten down for most of your life and so you have absolutely no idea what you're passionate about?

It happens. It was true for me and I've worked with several clients who have the same challenge. I've attended many workshops where the presenter suggests that, to get in touch with what you're really passionate about, you need to get back in touch with what you loved to do as a child.

And that's a very effective strategy - except what if there was no fun, excitement and passion allowed when you were a child? What if you have no positive memories of that time? Clearly, you need to find other ways of exploring what passions lay buried inside you.

It's easy to think there's something wrong with you if you don't know what you're passionate about. It's something people talk about a lot and yet, for some people, even the word 'passion' is completely foreign. So if this applies to you, here are some ways to explore and uncover what's buried inside you so that you can access your true and authentic self and live a joy filled life - yes, it is possible.

Change the word
If you find the word 'passion' a difficult one to embrace then don't use it. Instead, think about what interests you the most. What do you enjoy doing, talking about, reading or learning about? What do you get excited about? Is there something that, when you're doing this, time seems to go by very quickly? Start by making a list of those things.


Give yourself permission to explore this. You can try things and then decide that's not for you and move on to something else. You may be holding yourself back because you think you have to get it exactly right first time. You don't. If you embrace something because you think it's 'the thing' but then find after 6 months that you don't enjoy it any more, that's okay. You're simply exploring.


Use your journal or notebook to gain insights into your true nature. I find it helpful to do this exercise using specific statements. For example, complete the following statements:

What I really love doing is.....
What I get most excited about is.....
If I could do anything in the world that I wanted I would.....
If I could try anything it would be....

You get the idea. Think of your own statements and allow yourself to write without really thinking about it. Just see what comes up.

Look through magazines to find pictures words and statements that appeal to you. If you find something you like, cut it out. Once you have a stack of pictures/words, paste them onto a piece of poster board to create your own vision board. Place this somewhere where you will see it every day.

By looking at this visual representation of things that you like, you will open yourself up to being able to identify other things that you like and enjoy. Seeing a visual representation of things that you really like can be helpful to attract to you more of what you really want.

Take the passion test
There's a great book called The Passion Test by Janet Bray Attwood and Chris Attwood - read the book and take the test to help you begin the process of discovering what you want and who you really are.

If you don't know what you're passionate about because you've never had the opportunity before to open yourself up to your true and authentic self, I hope these ideas will help you to get started.

Linda Binns is known as an Energy Coach and Mentor, helping professional women and women business owners achieve work-life balance and freedom by identifying and releasing whatever is holding them back.

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