By Rebekah Kane
“What forms our passions and even purpose, can only unfold from living a curious life with an open heart.” – Elizabeth Gilbert
I love this quote. I love that Gilbert simply connects curiosity to shaping our passions and ultimately even informing our life’s purpose on some level. I have recently discovered a deep sense of urgency in my own life, to follow what sparks my curiosity and listen to any of those whispers that signal an interest or excitement about anything at all. A somewhat louder inner voice has been speaking with conviction to inspire me to play with some of my old and new passions. I encourage us all to pay attention to the inner wisdom that reminds us of what we love. It is our passions that lead us to live fully, and often connect us back to our purpose. When we explore what we love, we open up to experiencing a deeper, truer connection to our sense of self, and have even more energy to share with others.
Think back to what delighted you as a child. Most likely, what you enjoyed and found bliss in as a child is still actively a part of your life. I loved to read as a child, and I still now love books, reading and writing….and aspire to be an author of at least one book of my own someday soon.
Then, perhaps you might flash back to your most memorable classes in college–what did you choose to take because it simply filled you with joy? And now, in your life, what is it that you can completely lose yourself in? What are your passions now? How are you making space for them in your life?
If you look up the word “passion” in the dictionary, this is what you will find:
Passion – (n.) Strong and barely controllable emotion
Barely controllable, I love that. That which is simply a part of us, wants to be set free, and cannot be held back.
What is it that you can see yourself doing when you are bursting with joy, excitement, pleasure, bliss and all those other barely controllable feelings that define how you want to feel?
Whatever it may be–dancing, reading, writing, knitting, gardening, bird watching, painting, baseball, baking pies, building, creating, whatever ignites a fire in your belly–it is yours to explore and find delight in.
Interesting, is it not, that we do try to control or hold back our very strong emotions of pleasure sometimes. Our society has done a wonderful job of reminding us to “keep it under control.” I say, let loose and let your passions flow whenever you can. Then, again, I am a strong proponent of non-conformity.
Find the space, activity, place, and/or people where you can honor your passions and loves. They deserve a space in your life, because it is those experiences that will show you who you are. Life is too short for holding back in expressing what we love and enjoy. Reclaim your passions, declare your passions and engage with your passions.
The coolest aspect of playing around with our curiosities and re-discovering what we love to do and be is that we could be led to experiences we never would have imagined. We crack open a bit more and are open to even more wondrous opportunities in life.
One of my true passions, as many who know me can tell you, is that I LOVE to dance. I feel almost indescribable freedom and joy when I am dancing. One evening of dancing can boost my mood and barometer of feel-good energy for almost a couple weeks.
Although, it might not have become apparent to me until well into my adult years, what it is that I need to engage my heart and body in, I do know now what feeds my soul. Those activities, experiences and people that inspire and delight, are directly connected to my passions in life.
An invitation for you: Do a brainstorm or free write right now of what your passions are.
Go ahead and take the few minutes to let the questions below stir up some desire for what you love to do. No judgement. No censoring your thoughts. This is not an analytical exercise. It will come to you via your soul, heart and body. It doesn’t matter whether an idea may seem silly or impractical to anyone out there because no one else has to approve it! You will feel in your body what speaks loudest to you. Pay attention, listen, be curious. It doesn’t matter whether you see this activity or experience in your life now or not. Acknowledge that it wants to make some space in your world.
To help get those creative and passion-filled juices flowing, let these questions coax you a bit:
- What or who inspires you?
- How do you play? What did you do this past week that felt like play to you?
- What do you love to lose yourself in? Where and how do you find your bliss?
- What does your spirit need & want at this time in your life?
- What sets you on fire?
- What makes you smile, laugh and feel full inside?
- What are some of your most fun memories? What were you doing?
Initially, bring some awareness to what it is that you find joy in engaging in. Then, you can find tiny ways, at first, to weave that love or passion into your daily, weekly or monthly schedule.
Here is a challenge for you:
Which of these activities and/or experiences are you engaging in now, on a somewhat regular basis?
Which could you start today or tomorrow? In the smallest of steps….
In the smallest way, doing more of what you love, brings you closer to the truest essence of who you are, who you most want to be, and the best parts of you that you are meant to share with others. Then, miraculously your energy is often transformed, raising your levels of motivation and positivity, and you are able to bring a different perspective to all other areas of your life. Why? Because you are connected to your truest self and filling up with more of what you love. And you never know where that curiosity will take you….be curious, and love what you love.
Rebekah Kane, Founder of Tell a New Story Coaching, coaches and empowers people through job, career and life transitions with less stress, more balance, ease and joy.