What the hell is passion anyway?
We know the answer!
Passion is the hum that emerges when your strengths and values are put into action.
Probably not the easy breezy answer you were expecting.
In this month focused on Valentine's Day and the passion of love, we're inspired to talk about another kind of passion. The kind of passion that gives you a zeal for life.
We're eager to dive into this topic because we were recently in New York City for some business meetings. We love visiting Manhattan and are always swept away by the buzz of passion we feel in that city. The passion of such a massive population, coexisting in a tight space. The passion of many Creatives trying to "make it" in the ultimate city. The passion of a diverse, multi-cultural population living in the place that represents so much of what America stands for.
As we were saying not too long ago when we discussed strengths, so many people feel a lack of passion in their lives. Social media, movies, and television often glamorize passion and make us feel feel as though it's something we're just, you know, meant to magically harness. As in, if you don't instinctively know what you're passionate about, something's wrong with you.
Well, that's an inaccurate way to model passion and is probably a significant contributor to the fact that so many of us are (or were) screwed up. Go figure.
Of course, you can have glimpses of passion in life, but when passion is not grounded in self-awareness, it's often fleeting. Yeah, you know what I'm talking about because we've all felt it. And when passion is not rooted in knowledge of our strengths and values, it's impossible to take that passion to the most constructive, fulfill filling levels possible.
Which takes me back to Manhattan and the presence of so many people whose passion is in fact rooted in self awareness. Nowhere is that more evident to us in NYC than when we go to see theater. While we truly had very little time this trip and had to squeeze it in, we did make it to a couple musicals.
Seeing talent on stage in such a raw form (where you have to *bring it* every night) is tremendously inspiring.
We also see true passion in the art in NYC. This visit, we carved out time to check out the new Second Avenue Subway (which itself is an act of passion because it's been in the works since 1919).
The art attached to the Second Avenue Subway project is a visual representation of the city's renewed effort to not simply produce infrastructure but to also produce infrastructure that inspires; a way to elevate the community experience.
I guess all of this is so say that being around these displays of passion – in many forms in Manhattan – got us thinking about the topic. Which is exactly what it should do. Not surprisingly, it's also a much-welcome affirmation of this one-decade-old NVR lifestyle we're living. A lifestyle that's all about passionate living at its core. A lifestyle that – as we move into a new chapter – is even more focused on boldly living a gloriously edited life that allows us to lean further into those things we're most passionate about.
In our business, we work with many organizations and people feeling stuck in this area. And, again, passion is especially tricky because we're made to feel as though it just happens. Just look at all those perfectly curated (totally skewed!) social media feeds, reminding us that everyone else is living an on-track, passion-fueled life. Yeah. Right.
Some questions for you to consider:
Do you put yourself in environments and around people that inspire passion? It helps! If you have passion, putting yourself in these environments is a booster shot. If you're lacking true passion, the inspiration can conjure thoughts that will help you along your path.
Do you mistake other things for passion? Just because you spend a lot of time doing something, doesn't mean it's a passion. This is a big problem in today's world with so many of us wasting time, for example, curating those presences on social media that are often driven by presenting yourself in a certain way rather than in an accurate, authentic way.
Do you chip away at knowing your strengths and values? Yeah, I know. You've heard it from us before. But it's a key step, and we'll never shut up about it. Knowing yourself – and in this case, your strengths and values – is something no one can take away from you, boosts confidence, and unlocks doors.