We’ve all heard “pursue your passion” cliché speech way too many times. Some, went ahead and learnt to code and others played the piano a few times a week. And when asked ‘what’s your passion?’, they claim a passion for playing the piano. That’s furthest from what passion is. We tend to mix up between passion and hobby. Playing the piano a few times a week is a hobby. It’s only a passion when it has reached the level in which you suffer and struggle from playing the piano religiously.
The German word for passion explains this best.
In German, passion is “Leidenschaft”, which literally translates to “to endure” or “to suffer”. So, Germans perceive passion as a pursuit that entails struggle, and if left not pursued, it causes suffering as well!
Does that mean we ought to suffer in life?
Not quite. Let’s take an example. A 13-year-old girl, who wakes up every morning yearning to surf the beautiful waves she can hear from her bedroom. That’s her first thought as soon as she opens her eyes in the morning and the last thought before she closes them at night. Her mind is constantly engrossed on surfing. So, albeit tiresome, she dedicates her days, weeks, and years to surfing. Waking up at dawn, going to school bushed, missing out on social activities, yet she becomes a top surfing professional and quickly makes a living out of it. The same scenario, but with another kid, whose parents weren’t as supportive and suppress the kid’s strong desire to pursue their passion, that person grows up to be unhappy, knowing that they didn’t pursue what’s in their heart.
The suffering doesn’t mean to live in misery, it simply means it’s not easy. No one simply stumbles upon their passion. You don’t “find it” you ought to “develop it”. There will be obstacles, there will be numerous failures, and times in which you question why you’re even doing this, but then you quickly realize you’re doing it because it’s worth it! Because you love it! And if you weren’t doing it, then that suffering would be greater than the one you’re experiencing now. And that’s what keeps you going.
Keep in mind, you can have multiple passions, or you move from one passion to another throughout life. That’s actually preferred; having multiple passions will provide you with unique perspectives and you are likely to have light-bulb ideas and bring forth new innovations.
What if I don’t have a passion?
Now, you might be thinking “what if I don’t have a passion?” You’re not alone! But that does not mean you never will; just means you have not found that interest that you are willing to develop yet. One day, you will find that thing you are willing to suffer for. In a way, you already have. If you love your family, partner, friend, you will do anything for them, you’re willing to suffer for them if push comes to shove! Then its within you! You are capable to sacrifice for the things / people you love, there’s no doubt about that.
In our next blog, we can dig deeper into how you can find and develop your passion! That flame in your heart that will wake you up in the morning. For now, just breathe and go with the flow.
If you’re looking for a guided yoga practice, don’t forget to check out our Yoga classes at Align, here in Khobar, Saudi Arabia. With certified trainers who provide mind-body direction throughout the practice.