Is “aggressively passionate” a personality type?
Battered. Bruised. Sore. Achey. Exhilarated. Determined. Addicted. Just a few words I would use to describe how I feel about snowboarding since my first ever lesson just a few weeks ago.
Since then I have spent my savings on fully kitting myself out — new jacket, pants, gloves, boots, board, bindings — check. And a season pass to my nearest mountain — check.
I’ve never felt like this before. I think I’m in love. I finally understand the cheesy songs on the radio — John Legend never sounded so right.
The first time I made it down the baby slope without falling on my arse whilst connecting my turns was the moment I knew that this was the one for me. The hobby I’d been waiting my whole life for. The hobby that I thought surfing was when I learned and mastered it this summer, but now I know wasn’t my true soulmate. And before that, wakeboarding, who turned out to be just an exciting, short-lived fling.
A child-infested slope during school holidays is currently forcing me to have a couple of weekends away from my new obsession and has given me time to reflect. Both on my new love for snowboarding, but also on what it says about me as a person who tends to become, what I can best describe as, “aggressively passionate” about new things.
I started thinking about other times I have had this drive to learn something new and realised that it was actually quite common behaviour for me. Even with work projects in the past, I remembered intensely reading, watching YouTube tutorials daily and learning everything I could about the subject.
It doesn’t however apply to everything. It has to be something I enjoy, find interesting and have the physical and / or mental capability to learn — it makes it easy to learn something new if you’re passionate about it. Once the criteria has been met though, there’s no stopping me.
There’s something I love about the process of learning something new. The repetition, the falling, the getting back up, the falling less often, the determination and satisfaction when it clicks. And if you throw into the mix a competition of any sorts, then “aggressively” passionate becomes more of a “scary” determination.
I think that taking a look at the kind of person you are when faced with learning something new tells you a lot about yourself. We all have different hobbies and interests for a reason and we all have different ways of approaching things. Whether you’re a creative thinker, an enabler, a doer or a teacher, taking a look at how you learn is a great sign of what your skills are.
I’m a doer. I get things done, no matter what. I have a determination to get to the end goal, to master the skill and to own the knowledge. This is evident in the way I’m learning how to snowboard and in the way I manage the marketing for my company, AWLA.
My business partner, Alexis, is the creative and the perfectionist and I’m the doer — I don’t want to talk about it 17 times, I want to get out there and execute the plan. Alexis knows that she wouldn’t get things done if I was also a creative or perfectionist like her, she’s too precious about things, so we meet in the middle and that’s why we’re a great team.
Now I’m not advocating trying a dangerous new hobby just to see what kind of person you are, but It’s good to self-reflect sometimes. Knowing who you are when faced with something new and knowing how you will react is invaluable in all parts of life — work, relationships, hobbies, sports — they’re all different, but your approach will more often than not be the same.