“Passion is the first and most essential ingredient for planning and beginning a business or for starting and completing any worthwhile project.” ~ Martha Stewart
5 Steps to Find Your Passion for Your Next Act
Are you looking to reinvent yourself? Maybe you are reeling from the economic downturn or just feel ready to move on to something different, more interesting or exciting. Where do you begin?
First, consider: Do you want to work at a job, at a career, or at a passion? If you want to work at a job, your primary concern will be your compensation. If it is at a career, it will be your opportunities for promotions and professional development. And if it is at a passion your concern will be the work itself and the desire for money, prestige or control will be secondary.
Confucius said, “Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life.” When Mae Laborde reinvented herself to start her Hollywood career at age 93, she was an example of someone who wanted to work at a passion. She was good at it and she loved it.
Use Passion to Fuel Your Next Act
1. Pick Yourself Up and Dust Off
Some of the most successful people have achieved remarkable achievements after some spectacular failures. You can read about them here, but the point is, you too can reinvent yourself and be successful! Accept that this is a scary process; embrace the challenge of moving into an exciting new direction. Po Bronson in his quest to find out how people reinvented themselves found that they usually did it in hard times; in good times they only talked about it. “Hard times forced them to overcome the doubts that normally gave them pause. It surprised me how often we hold ourselves back until we have no choice.”[i]
2. Be Positive
It may be hard to positive at a time like this, but it is an absolute must. Research by Barbara Frederickson, author of Positivity, has shown that people need a positivity ration of 3:1 to flourish. A side benefit of having positivity at an optimal ratio is that positivity “broadens and builds.” This means that you will see more opportunities and that they will build on one other in unexpected ways. If that sounds on target, but not doable, read my blog about how you can up your positivity ratio.
3. Find Your Strengths
It makes sense that as you move forward in a new direction that you want to do it from a position of strength. Unfortunately, most of us don’t have a good idea of what our strengths are. They are a taken-for-granted commodity. A good way to develop awareness of your strengths is to think about the things that energize and excite you. You are probably using your strengths at those times. I also offer a free Strengthsfinder coaching session that you can schedule here.
4. Commit to Your Values
When you are passionate about something it is because you care deeply about. You want to think about what you value and you want to commit your life direction to something that is grounded in those values. To help figure that out, review this list of values and ask yourself: What do you value most about yourself as a human being? What do you value most about your work? What would you value about an organization that you were affiliated with?
5. Put Your Toe in the Water
Reinventing yourself is a process. Start with baby steps. When you take a small step towards a new direction you won’t find yourself paralyzed by the fear of making a big change. Big changes usually are the cumulative result of taking many small steps. Most important: enjoy the journey, learn as you go, and in the words of Ellen Langer, “Be GLADO.”
Want some help in using passion to fuel your next act? Please contact me for a free consultation to see if some coaching can help you.
P.S. Have you checked out The Happiness Shelf in the Leader’s Library on www.lynnkjones.com? My picks and the reasons why I picked them are all there with links to Amazon. And, if you buy one of these books through the Leader’s Library, I am donating the affiliate money I earn to Better World Books.
Dr. Lynn K. Jones is a Certified Personal and Executive Coach based in Santa Barbara, California and a sought after coach and consultant for organizations and individuals across the US. Her doctoral work completed at the Wurzweiler School of Social Work, Yeshiva University concerned organizational culture; she coaches, consults and trains organizations on what they need to do to create organizational cultures that are aligned with their vision and values using a process of Appreciative Inquiry. She coaches individuals on achieving their reflected best selves. An MSW@USC faculty member, Dr. Lynn K. Jones, MSW, DSW, CSWM, teaches Human Behavior and Social Environment and Leadership to social work students at the University of Southern California.
BCC Board Certified Coach #1487
[i] Po Bronson, What Should I Do With My Life: The True Story of People Who Answered the Ultimate Question