"When they know that they do not know,
people can find their own way…
The simplest pattern is the clearest.
Content with an ordinary life,
you can show all people the way
back to their own true nature.”
Verse 65 – Tao Te Ching – by Lao Tzu
How do I find my “passion?” How do I know what my “great work” is?
These questions keep coming up in recent conversations with friends.
Many of us are at a time in our lives when we are feeling the growing pains of personal growth and yet, have not found a specific outlet or a direction for all of the new-found energy and experience we’ve been gathering.
When it comes to major life-direction type questions, I am a big believer that... the only person who has the answer is YOU.
You know your own best way. (Even if you don’t KNOW you know it… you know it.)
And I certainly don’t have any answers for anyone… I’m constantly exploring what’s happening with my own crazy self and I definitely don’t know what is best for someone else.
However, I think that finding your “passion” or any other answer you are looking to find for yourself is really about…
1. Trusting yourself
2. Asking yourself the right questions
3. Listening and trusting yourself
4. Being open to allowing the answers to come
5. Being brave and trusting yourself
6. Testing to see if the answer you THINK you’ve found is really lasting and true for you (not just based on what you “should” do or what other people have told you that you “should” do)
7. Allowing yourself to feel the fear, but not letting it stop you
8. Taking action to move in the direction of your "great work"
9. Feeling fantastic that you’ve started to do what you’ve always (secretly) wanted to do
10. Make it a habit. Keep doing it...
The time-table on this journey? Totally up to you.
Actually,… this will probably take forever. I know it will for me, at least, but I’m okay with that.
It’s go-at-your-own-pace… Choose your own adventure!
I think it’s fun, asking questions and not knowing the answers.
Here are some questions I enjoy asking myself often…
· Whose work inspires me? (This is often an indication of the kind of work I’d like to be doing.)
· How can I give? (It’s not about what I have to gain, it’s alllll about what I have to GIVE. I gain through giving.)
· What is my reason for doing this thing? (If it’s because I think it's “FUN,” then I know I’m on the right track.)
· What can I do to make this hurt less/ eliminate the things that bother me? (Ouch! Discomfort and pain are my friends. They are indications that action needs to be taken…Step away from the crazy-makers.)
· Am I consistently moving toward what makes me feel good? (Do more of that!)
· Am I living out my childhood dreams?
· What’s my idea of “play?” (If it’s fun for someone else, that doesn’t mean it’s going to be fun for me.)
· When no one else was around, what am I naturally drawn to do/think about?
· Am I just surviving or am I moving towards thriving?
· How can I do less of what I don't like and more of what I love?
· Am I procrastinating because of a lack of interest or a fear of failure?
· Will this only give me fleeting pleasure or the joy of lasting satisfaction?
…Blah, blah, blah… You get the idea.
The best part, with questions like these, is that there are really no wrong answers.
It’s simple really… Do what you want to do. That’s how you know what you “should” do.
Trust yourself. Go you own way. Be happy.
“The best career advice to give the young is, find out what you like doing best and get someone to pay you for doing it.”
– Katherine Whilehaen
“The least strained and most natural ways of the soul are the most beautiful; the best occupations are the least forced.”
– Michel de Montaigne
Juilliard Drama Campus Tour: Sept 21 (reservation confirmed)
Juilliard MFA Open House: Sept 25 (reservation confirmed)