The word passion derives its roots from the Latin meaning ‘suffering’. There’s no such thing called overnight success. It takes time, effort, and practice to get there. Passion indeed is a determination despite the suffering that you willingly go through to become good at something you love doing. You’d be ready to walk on fire to achieve that.
Back in my school days, I was engrossed in athletics. Despite working hard, I wasn’t good enough to make a cut for the team. So I started playing outside and continued to hone my skills and got selected to play on the college team. The point is, passion has to be in harmony with the willingness to go through the grind. A spartan warrior proverb says
“Sweat more in training, and you will bleed less in the war.”
I find it so compelling that I’ve made it the sacred word of my life.
Growing up, I never had a realization about my passion. During my high school days, I always relished speaking English well, but I wasn’t pushed to participate in elocutions, dramas, or plays. However, some terrific teachers at school inspired me to be an excellent communicator. Their learning primed me for leadership roles. In college, the very first time I had an opportunity to attend the Rotary Youth Leadership Academy in Bangalore, I happened to meet a fantastic orator who inspired me to continue honing my communication skills. I would deliberately put myself in challenging situations and address large gatherings without mentors. I continued to learn from my mistakes and got better. I also made little changes in my lifestyle that could help my progress with my passion. I watched a lot of English movies and read books to expand my vocabulary. My first job made me do a lot of public speaking. I used to address hundreds of students daily. And after every presentation, the fact that I was able to share a nugget that would help them in their career was very fulfilling. When I reminisce, I realize all these furthered me to lead my passion for communicating valuable information to people to transform their lives. Today, I lead a people’s organization & passion serves what I do every day.
Hobbies and passion are often misconstrued. They are two different words with very different meanings. However, they can converge at some point.
Hobbies are simply leisure activities you take to pass your time. Now, while practicing a hobby, if you realize a market for it, you take it as a passion and turn it around to make it a journey from hobby to passion. Many entrepreneurs have been known to do that successfully.
Passion is a journey of struggle to do something you like.
People take a lifetime to find their passion. But it’s never too late. To identify your passion, you need to think about these questions:
1) What are you good at? What skills do you possess?
2)What do you love doing that makes you forget about time?
3) And what is your purpose? What impact will it create in your life and others?
My mentors made me realize I was an excellent communicator and had a good shot at being an orator. I went on to pursue it, and now I am interacting with students to help them get better. Technology staffing gave me an opportunity, but I was able to create a business out of it.
When I started my company, VDart, I was prepared to make sacrifices, for it was something I was so passionate about. But, passion also requires patience. It was a long wait of 10 years before I could act on it. It was just the beginning. Only after two years of sacrifices and uncertainty, I could see the light at the end of the tunnel.
I’ve heard people grouch about being stuck in their jobs and not finding space to find their passion, at the same time, being skeptical about leaving a job. I’ve always advised them to pursue it as a side hustle. The best place to be at is to continue what you’re doing if you need to support yourself financially and follow your passion as a side gig, but never stop hustling for it. If you do not have a financial need, then figure out passion first and then pursue it.
As I’ve mentioned earlier, it’s not an inborn talent. You can always develop it. You need to figure out what is that you relish doing and evaluate how good you’re and ways to sharpen your skill.
To turn your passion into a profession, clarity of thought is of utmost importance. You need to think introspectively and ask yourself if your passion could solve a problem persisting in society. If you’re able to align your passion to a noble purpose or even fill in the gaps that exist in society or market, you’ll shine through. Therefore, you should be able to convert your passion into a sustainable and well profitable business. Passion, when aligned to problem-solving, can quickly become a business.
There is a science behind it, and many studies have been conducted. Money does not bring happiness. Money takes you only to a certain point in life. It is passion that will keep you fulfilled in life. Studies show that after a certain amount of money made per year, people are at the same level of happiness regardless of how much they are making. When you love your job, it no longer seems like a job.