By Stephanie Reed
For me, there was no real struggle to find my passion, for others, it can be a complicated process. Some might ask, “what is passion in the 1st place”? Passion has been defined as an emotion or intense drive; a feeling of conviction; a desire for or devotion to some activity, object, or concept. Simply stated, passion is what you care about; its what drives you.
I consider myself to be an introvert and a pretty introspective person. I pay very close attention to how I “feel” and base much of my behavior around that. As a college student it became very clear to me that I cared a great deal about completing college and had some very strong feelings about what I got out of my college experience. That feeling is what led me to focus my career aspirations on “the business of college” or higher ed administration. Some of my family may argue, that this career path was predestined for me! At a family barbecue when I was a child (many, many, many years ago) we used to have talent contests and I sang a song once that I had made up. The song was about how I was going off to college and it was going to be GREAT! Who would’ve thought that my childhood song would become my adult reality! Go Figure!
As I have grown as a person and as a young professional, I have tried to match my interests in psychology (my college major) with my strong conviction for education. I took the time to find out (while I was a college student) what the people who I looked up to did to get where they were. I actually had meetings with the Vice President of my university to inquire about her role and how she came to acquire her position. I later found people to mentor me which really aided me in my career decison making. However, ultimately the decision to work in higher education was born out of my passon.
Passion can also be what people do when they are NOT working. As an adult and mid-level experienced professional, I now try to find ways to continue to feed my passion outside of work. Take this blog for instance, I started this not out of need or requirement in my current job but because I wanted to share my story/passion and expertise with people. My passsion continues to drive me to do things like write books and pursue a desire to be a public speaker!
The moral of the story is, I LOVE what I do and I actually enjoy doing it even when I am NOT getting paid to do it. For the person who is struggling to find their passion, perhaps THAT is the question to ask yourself. “What would you do for FREE….what activity or job would you perform for absolutley NO FINANCIAL REWARD?” Therein lies the answer to your question….you might have just FOUND YOUR PASSION!