“The boy gathers materials for a temple, and then when he is thirty, concludes to build a woodshed.” – Henry David Thoreau (1817 – 1862), American Author and Philosopher
Passion is easy when you’re young. You don’t yet understand all the reasons why your dreams are so tough to pursue. Everything seems possible. As you get older, harsh realities set in. You realize it takes a hell of a lot of effort to achieve them. Roadblocks to your plans are everywhere and it becomes tougher to stay passionate.
My work with clients through the years has given me glimpses into where and how people find true satisfaction in life. While many of the insights are situational, I have found one to be universal and quite clear. Figuring out where and why passion has slipped out of your life – and taking action to get it back if you’ve lost it – is extremely important to feeling satisfied and happy. It reconnects you to a profound source of energy that has a positive impact on all parts of your life. Too many people let their passions go too easily. Where have you lost passion? Where have you built a woodshed where a temple should stand?
1. Take a quick survey of your life to date. Jot down the times when you felt truly energized and passionate.
2. Flesh out one or two of the situations. What were you doing? Who were you with? What risks were you taking?
3. Look at your answers to #2. What, if anything, is missing from your life now that you had then?
4. How can you get some of those things back? How can you begin to reconnect to the energy you were feeling?
5. Don’t look to recreate an old situation, rather look at general themes such as – building something, helping people etc.
6. Start weaving them into your life.
– Doug Sundheim is a leadership consultant, author, and speaker. His book on Smart Risk-Taking is due out in 2012.
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