I consider myself pretty lucky. Since I was a kid, I’ve always knows what my passions were. Yes, passions with an “s”. It’s never been an issue with me, so I’m often amazed when people don’t know what their passion is. I’m one of those creative types that can easily get carried away with new interests. But for many, it’s not so easy to find their passion.
So, how do you find your passion after 50 when you’ve spent your life not really knowing? The easiest thing is to pay attention to that little voice in your head, or your heart. This is the voice that says, “Yes!”, when you come across certain things. Focus on that thing that gets you excited, or that thing that you automatically are attracted to whenever you encounter it. It’s about the feeling you get whenever someone mentions it, or you see a video about it, or an article. What gets you excited?
You might think that’s a pretty simple thing to do, and it is for many of us, but it’s not always so easy for some. My husband is the type who never knows what his passion is. Whenever I ask him what he’s passionate about, he can never come up with anything, and there are a lot of people like him.
What rings your bell?
Many years ago, I think it was on the Oprah Winfrey Show, they were talking about this very topic and someone said something that stuck with me. Someone wanted to know how to find their passion, and someone answered something to the effect of, if you’re sitting somewhere in public, and you overhear a conversation, what is it that they would be talking about that would make you want to jump into this conversation? What would get you excited enough to make you interrupt a chat between strangers?
See, for me, the answer to that has always been clear. I’m an artist, a painter, and I am also passionate about writing. I’ve always done both and am very passionate about these things, I’m a creative type and pretty much get excited about anything creative. If I don’t paint and create, I literally become sick. I’ve also discovered many years ago that I’m passionate about entrepreneurship.
But that’s me, and this post is about helping you find your passion.
It might not be what you think!
A lot of people think passions have to be something artsy. That’s not always so, For some, a passion can be about volunteering for a cause, it could be landscaping and gardening, racing cars, animal rescue, missionary work, riding horses, fitness, blogging, or a whole other slew of things that are not necessarily about creating.
Just think, what gets your blood flowing?
Are there certain videos that you naturally gravitate to on YouTube? What sorts of books or magazines are you interested in? If you were to start a blog, what topic would you like to write about? This might give you a clue to your passion.
For some, it might even be a second career after retirement. My husband, the guy who had no clue what his passions are, retired from being a school principal and is now a successful real estate broker. The guy who had no passion, is passionate about selling real estate. He works harder now than he did as a principal, but he loves it. It charges him, and he’s out the door early in the morning, and back often late at night, or working crazy hours seven days a week, and he’s having more fun than he ever did. He unknowingly found his passion.
Think on it
Yep. Meditation works wonders, and we can find more personal insight through meditating. By meditating, we become self-aware and mindful. These can help you notice and pay attention if something rings your bell, something you might not ever had considered before, but because of being more mindful, something suddenly strikes you when you come upon it and you realize, wow, this is something I really love! Try it, but give it time and don’t force it.
Keep a little notepad in your purse, or use the notepad on your phone, and use these as sort of a vision or idea board. Whenever you come across something you like, write it down. Ideas produce more ideas, so don’t dismiss anything. Brainstorm. After a while, you might start recognizing a pattern in the things that pique your interest.
Maybe you’ve always wanted to try painting, or sewing, knitting, or woodworking. Heck, how about welding? Some people have pretty good side hustles creating steel works of art and things. Sometimes you just need to try new things in order to broaden your range of interests.
It’s just like the kid that never had the opportunity to be in various activities growing up. This kid reaches the end of high school and suddenly needs to decide on a career, but is clueless because he never experienced enough things while growing up. It’s the same with adults. We need to try many things to find the things we do like and are good at. How can we know what we like if we’ve never tried things?
Meet New People
Meeting new people works the same way as trying new things. By meeting new people, we’re exposed to new ideas and experiences. A new friend might tell you all about how they took flying classes and this gets you thinking about how they might need a little cafe at the flying school. It sounds crazy, but like I said, ideas breed new ideas, and by meeting new people, we are exposed to new ideas.
Ask Those Who Know You
Sometimes we don’t realize we have a special knack for something until someone points it out to us. Ask people you know what they think you’re good at, or if they think you have a special talent. You might be surprised.
I try to live by those words and am making it my motto, in all areas of my life.
Remember what it was like to be a child and be curious about everything? How we’d always ask why?
Children have a natural curiosity which allows them to learn and flourish. We lose a lot of that curiosity as we age. We become so busy, that who has time to learn new things? We stick to what we need to know in order to make our lives more productive and less cluttered, so we lose our natural curiosity about things.
Try to be more childlike and be curious. Learn about new things, and seek out new things to be curious and learn about. You just might find your passion in there somewhere.
It’s About the Journey
Now, I personally think a lot of people get lost when trying to figure out their passion because they think it has to be something that will make money. Forget about that. Just find it and do it. The rest might happen, or it might not, but it doesn’t always have to be about the money.
Finding a passion is about just that, passion. It’s about doing something you love, something that excites you and makes it worth getting up in the mornings for. Sometimes these can be turned into successful side hustles, and sometimes not. Sometimes it’s just about the sheer enjoyment and love of the activity itself.
Not everything has to be about money.
I know a lady who’s passion is simply exploring. She’s in her late 70’s, and just spends her days taking day trips and exploring. She explores tiny towns with history, old graveyards, and hiking. She just lives with a childlike fascination with everything and you can tell she is so happy and full of life. When I look at her, I see youthful excitement in her eyes. I bet she could turn that into a successful blog about day tripping, but not everything is about money.
Just Do It!
There are so many more ways one can find their passion. The point is to just figure out what you love. What could you do forever even if you never got paid? That’s often the simplest way of finding out what you love. Once you do, run with it and don’t over think it. Like Nike says, just do it.
All my best to you in finding your passion! Do you have any other tips on how someone can find theirs?