What is your passion in life? What is it that gets you up in the morning – you eat, breathe and sleep it, it’s where your mind goes when ever you daydream?
Is it art, acting, music, poetry, photography or maybe it’s electronics, auto mechanics or culinary or maybe it’s academics; math, science, medicine or history or maybe it’s sports
I’ll just bet that if you think back to when you were just a kid you realize that you were always doing it. Like that first time you stepped on the ice, most of the kids were holding on to a chair to get around but you were like a little bug flying around on your skates. Or you sat down at the piano and you heard the melodies that you could make just by pressing the keys you got lost in the sounds. Or you took apart everything, just to see how the heck it worked.
It’s always fun to ask someone what they “are” .. “oh, I’m an actor .. but I’m waiting tables until I get my break” .. I’m a mechanic – I built my first car at 14 … but I’m waiting tables until …
And I know that all we see these days are articles about how you should get out of the rat race and follow your passions. While that may be great you may also have responsibilities like kids and bills and that can have a huge impact on the viability of “passion pursuing”. So we wait until the time is right to “go for it”. And I know that our spouses and kids are our passions as well.
Well, unless someone dumps a load of cash on you, the time may never be right to start your career in fine art or open your own auto repair. So we wait some more and we hide our passions under a bushel basket.
As a little kid I had three passions: music, photography and marketing (like “sales/marketing/advertising; although at the time I had no idea what that was). I had a drum at six years old and I played the crap out that drum. I had a cheap film camera and I took a million bad pictures and a few good ones and I was fascinated with commercials. I knew that I was going to be a musician by the age of six. People would ask me what I wanted to do when I grew up and I’d reply “be a drummer in a rock band” .
But then there’s that responsibility thing. Kids and bills and a car and a house and insurance and all the rest. And we juggle it all. And we put our passions on hold. I did and I don’t regret it for one moment.
I recently saw a TED talk given by a “buttoned down” executive type on following your passions and the positive impact of doing it can have on your kids. And I never thought of it that way. I only saw it as putting a burden on your family – you see I was working a 9 to 5 and then playing music with a band four to five nights a week for many years.
The TED talk focused on that moment when your kids come to you and ask for your support as they pursue their passions in life. And they tell you that you gave them the strength to “go for it” because they saw that you did.
Everyone is talking at you ” Go for it”, or “don’t be a fool … you’ll fail for sure”
“I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” Thomas A. Edison
“Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is always to try just one more time.” Thomas A. Edison
Entrepreneurs who are successful appear to have just been born successful, but many have a string of failures behind them. The biggest movie stars will tell you that they went on hundreds of auditions to get “discovered”.
There may never be the right time in life to restart following your passions. Even though you may never make them your profession, they are what define you.
Don’t hide your light under a bushel basket, let your freak flag fly.
Dan Busler is a professional portrait, performance and event photographer with studios located south of Boston in Walpole MA. You can see more of his work at http://www.danbuslerphotography.com