"Do you want to know who you are? Don't ask. Act! Action will delineate and define you. " ~Thomas Jefferson
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;
- Creating a self-supporting home
- Having the freedom to do the things I love
- Having fun with kindred spirits
- Feeling financially secure
- Fit and flexible
- Influencing vast numbers of people to become more self-reliant, live deliberately and build localised communities.
- Travelling with Don in our caravan spending time in small towns getting to know the locals.
- 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.