Sunday, 16 April 2017

Identifying My Passions

"Do you want to know who you are? Don't ask. Act! Action will delineate and define you. " ~Thomas Jefferson




When I wrote the post Time and Tide I had been contemplating how people can put off dreams in favour of just getting through the daily grind. It is so easily done. Like many people, my everyday responsibilities can keep me on a treadmill of doing. I have little time  to pause and evaluate or dream.
  
Another barrier to achieving what I really want is  the abundance of  things on offer.  What is it that I really do want? Many of the things I want can be in opposition to each other. For example: Do I really want to upgrade my car, or do I want to pay down my debt and become debt free?

Can I really be, do, and have it all? Wasn't that the sort of thinking that was put in front of men and women in the 80's and early 90's? I know there are so many possibilities that I would love to explore. However I do not have the resources - the time and money to do everything that crosses my mind as a 'wouldn't it be nice…." possibility. So how can I know if I am on the right path for me at this present time?



I find the method used in the book  The Passion Test by Janet Bray Atwood and  Chris Atwood very helpful. I have used the book to help me clarify which of my desires are the most important. Using the method described in the book I came up with a list of 15 passions. I will share some of that list here



When my life is ideal I am;

  1. Creating a self-supporting home
  2. Having the freedom to do the things I love
  3. Having fun with kindred spirits
  4. Feeling financially secure
  5. Fit and flexible
  6. Influencing vast numbers of people to become more self-reliant, live deliberately and build localised communities.
  7. Travelling with Don in our caravan spending time in small towns getting to know the locals.
  8. Being part of a large, resourceful, valuable network.



In total I came up with a list of 15 things that I think would sum up my ideal life.  Realistically I know I cannot keep my attention on 15 different areas while doing all the things I need to do to keep my life ticking over.  By following the instructions in the book I was able to narrow my list of 15 passions down to a manageable five. 

 Next I examined how much each of the five passions were present in my life. Then I created a list of 'markers' for each passion. The markers are a list of things that paint a word picture of my life when that individual passion is present in my life. I then created a list of actions for each passion.  The actions are steps either big or small that I can focus on to help build momentum toward bringing my passions into my life more fully.

I think it is good to do something like this every couple of years or so as life changes us so much.  Something that is a passion now may no longer light my fire in a few years time. I remember back to when I was about 20, a couple of co-workers and I pipe-dreamt about running our own chocolate shop on Daydream Island. Trust me, this desire has not made it onto my current list of passions. ;-)

What are some of the things that would be on your list of passions?


You can find more information on the Passion test here

16 comments:

  1. Passions-lots of outdoor time-being in nature. Gardening. Baking.
    I'm going to put that book on my library list. Though my life is exactly how I want it NOW, who knows what the future brings. Always love exploring ideas.

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    1. The book is a very good read. As well as the test itself the book contains lots of inspiring stories and interviews with people who have aligned themselves with their life's passions.

      I too love gardening (when the weather is not too hot), baking and being out in nature - and puttering around the house. I find them to be such fulfilling activities.

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  2. This is an interesting topic!

    Thank you for giving a link, because I had never heard of the Passion Test.

    My usual answer, to any question of mine is, be quiet and ask my "gut feeling." Have found that... usually... inside me.... I find my answer.... to any question of "What *should* I do?"

    Off to look at your link...

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    1. Taking time to listen to the small quiet voice within is a great technique for identifying your passions and purpose. I think where the book helped me a bit further was on establishing which passions were the most important to me.

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  3. OT but... Your background... Is that a rose? Or swirled frosting on a cupcake? :-)))))))))

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    1. It is a rose. But it is possible that the rose was made out of frosting. :-) It is a blogger background but I cannot remember which type it is. I really liked the colours when I came upon it in the background set up.

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  4. I think I've been fortunate that since I was a child, I've always known what I wanted to do; be a wife, mother, live a simple and creative life, and just enjoy what each day offers me. Sometimes it has been hard to keep an eye on those goals, especially when society was telling me that it wasn't enough, but at the end of the day, I think we all know what is truly our heart's desire.

    Hugs
    Jane

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    1. "Society" is very good at telling other people what they should be doing. However I find that mostly the individuals who make up society want to follow their own path, whatever that might be. I have pretty much wanted to be a homesteader since I was in my early 20's. Circumstances and people have gotten in the way but I kept plodding on with the same destination always in sight. The 'what' was established pretty early on the 'how' has taken a long time to roll out.

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  5. That sounds like an interesting exercise to do and small actions can lead to big changes:)

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  6. From memory when I was 18 I wanted to open a coffee shop where people would be playing music, sitting around and relaxing and getting to know each other. That was back in the hippy era. LOL!

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    1. What if my chocolate shop had been next door to your coffee shop! What fun that would have been.

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  7. My results to this test came up with some astounding stuff......hmmmm what have I unearthed?!

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    1. I am glad you found it interesting Phil. I think it is a worthwhile activity to explore what it is we would like to bring into our lives more fully.

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  8. It's always harder narrowing down passions, than it is to conjure them up. ;) In my early forties, I'm going through a life re-evaluation at the moment. So it's not the right time to seek specific passions. It's more the practical decisions time. Like how are we going to set-up our life, so we can transition to empty nesters (one day) and then retirement.

    Whatever retirement means, nowadays. ;)

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    1. I agree. That is why I like the exercise from the book that helps me to focus on which of my passions are the most important to me right now. I don't have the ability to focus on everything at once and I don't want to expend energy on things that are less important to me than I had realised.

      What does retirement mean? That could be a whole blog post on its own.

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