So. This is it.
You’re gonna take that first step.
You’re committing to following your passion and going after the life you want. You’re finally going to take the chance and look out for number 1! Go you!
But…wait. Where do you start?
When you’re following your passion, it can be a little overwhelming to know what your first steps should be. Before you dive in, I want to share this piece of advice that I’ve carried with me throughout my entire creative journey. No matter what your passion is or what goals you’re striving to reach, there’s one thing you need to know.
Ready to follow your passion?
What is Your Passion?
Wouldn’t it be great if a little notification just popped up on your phone one day that said ‘congrats, you’ve discovered your passion!’. Like, can’t a girl get a little help around here?
The process of finding your passion is such an exciting thing and at the same time, it’s one of the biggest challenges you’ll ever face. Regardless of where you fall on that spectrum, there’s one huge thing you have to remember: this process is rewarding, but it is not easy.
You’re probably thinking that you already knew that. That you’re excited anyway, and you’re prepared to step up to the challenge. But we’re all excited in the beginning. We all believe that we can rise to the occasion when we need to. But when you hit that first roadblock, when you feel the sting of that first failure…how are you going to feel then?
Will you start to question if you made the right move? If your passion is really your passion?
Will you be tempted to give up?
When the Setbacks Arise…
It’s not if the setbacks happen. It’s when.
You have to know that when you’re following your passion, and you have to do your best to embrace it. Challenges are all parts of the journey, and they’re often the parts that we learn the most about ourselves and what we’re capable of.
A journey is a journey. It has its ups, it has its downs, and you signed up for that. But if you do what it takes to prepare, you will be infinitely more successful.
Prepare for hardships by knowing and believing this: you do not need outside approval when you are chasing your passion.
Marcus Aurelius said it best:
“A person who doesn’t know what the universe is, doesn’t know who they are. A person who doesn’t know their purpose in life doesn’t know who they are or what the universe is. A person who doesn’t know any of these things doesn’t know why they are here. So what to make of people who seek or avoid the praise of those who have no knowledge of where or who they are?”
When you’re putting so much time, so much effort, so much energy into discovering what your purpose is and what you’re passionate about, why are you seeking the approval of those who have never considered those things themselves? Why would they know what you should be doing? And why should they have a say anyway?
And even if they have figured out a thing or two — that person is not you. When you’re having a conversation with another person and you’re voicing uncertainty about your passion, you’re confessing that you feel lost, you’re asking for their guidance, it should be no surprise when they say this thing must not be for you.
If all you’re doing is going to people because you feel discouraged or frustrated, all they see is your passion making you discouraged or frustrated. You have to cut these conversations out of your life. Instead, turn inwards. Have the conversation with yourself. Check in with yourself and create a plan for taking on the struggles.
A great way to have this conversation with yourself in an effective, productive way is by creating something. When I’m feeling unclear about where to go or what to do next, it can be so helpful to get my vision out in a physical form. Even if it’s a digital physical form, like Picmonkey (my personal fav)! Creating graphics for a brand you’re creating, a vision board for what you want your future to look like, or social media post to tell people about what you’re up to are all great ways to get your creativity activated and directed towards your passion. Use what you have to show yourself what you’re capable of. No one needs to approve of it but you.
Moral of the story: stop searching for that external approval and start making something that matters to you. You’ll never know what you’re capable of if you don’t try, and knowing what you can do is the first step to combating the setbacks and achieving your goals. If your passion is real and true to you, that excitement isn’t going anywhere. Use it to your advantage.
QOTD: What are you going to create to show the world what you’re passionate about?