Have you ever noticed how confusing it is to know what you really want in life? And even when you have an inkling, it's confusing knowing whether or not the inkling is the best way to go.
Confusion is what keeps us stuck. Confusion creates frustration and anxiety. When you don't know which path to follow or what you should do next, the most common fallback position is to remain stuck. We think, "If I don't know what to do, then the best thing is to do nothing." But that's just a recipe for life-long inertia. Doing nothing may be useful in some situations, but when it comes to finding your passion, doing nothing is the worst thing you can do. But aside from doing nothing, it appears the only other options are to try not to think about our confusion or attempt to "force" ourselves to feel OK about the status quo.
That might work for a time. But you can't trick your psyche. Ultimately, your deeper desires and a longing for something more will create that same old restlessness again. If this cycle happens enough times, then you're setting yourself up for depression or some other kind of internal crisis. You can't suppress your life force forever.
The entire process of uncovering your life passion and then figuring out how to make it part of your life requires hundreds of choices and decisions. Most of them aren't black and white decisions. Each possible path or choice has potential consequences or outcomes that are unforeseen and potentially difficult or painful.
We have years of conditioning, limiting beliefs, emotional roadblocks, and perceived expectations that further confuse us and shroud our vision of what we really truly want for ourselves. We think we should follow a certain path, take a particular job, marry a particular person, live a specific lifestyle — but we wake up one day and it feels all wrong. The life is being sucked out of us, and we can't fathom why.
That's why I teach an entire course devoted to helping people sort through all of these roadblocks and decisions so they can move forward with more clarity and peace of mind. Not that it's always easy, but having clarity lends a level of peace to making difficult decisions that are ultimately in our own best interest. But you can't take a course every day, and if you are working toward finding your passion (or just thinking about it), it's nice to have a few tools in your pocket to cut through some of the confusion you are likely feeling.
Here are three confusion-busting strategies you can apply in 15 minutes or less as decisions and choices arise on your passion search. Be sure you take notes on the results and feedback you receive from each of them.
Of course this trick doesn't give you specific direction, nor should it be the sole indicator of what is best for you. But it does give you insight into where your desires are pulling you.
You may be surprised how the people close to us see things in us that we can't see ourselves. They may recognize skills, inclinations, or aptitudes that we take for granted. Maybe they see you as a leader or organizer, but you don't notice this in yourself or see it as a useful skill.
You may be surprised how the people close to us see things in us that we can't see ourselves. They may recognize skills, inclinations, or aptitudes that we take for granted.
Hearing your strengths and blind spots reflected back to you by someone who sees you from the outside is extremely useful and insightful. But you must be willing to really hear what they say and take action on it.
How can you apply the insights they share to uncover or pursue your passion? In what career fields might these skills be useful or applicable? How could you use their insights to do something meaningful that serves a higher purpose? And how can you address the roadblocks or issues they see in you in order to live your passion? Your friends might help you brainstorm these thoughts further.
Once you complete these three exercises, gather all of your notes from the feedback and results you received. Review the notes to look for patterns or areas that particularly resonate with you. These are strong clues toward the direction your life passion is calling you.