One thing about passion (that is not stressed enough)

Passion will inevitably make you more selfish.

It so happens because passion always wants to grab hold of the biggest chunk of your life.

Passion is hungry for your time. It wants all of it.

And since you love it you will give it a lot of your time.

You will have no problem spending a lot of time on it. You will enjoy it greatly.

Actually, you’ll become addicted to it. You will feel that you can’t breathe without it. That it has become your oxygen.

That’s love, right?

No wonder, passion actually means love.

In the movie Being AP the Northern Irish former horse racing Champion Jockey (his is the record of 20 consecutive titles) Anthony Peter McCoy, also known as A.P. McCoy or Tony McCoy, said:

I think you have to be selfish. I think it has to be all about you. I’m really embarrassed to say it, but, uh, no one else in the world was important.

Source: British jump racing Champion Jockey — Wikipedia

Of course, not all top achievers will admit it as openly as A.P. McCoy did, but I think it was about them most of the time.

Some of them admit it, albeit in an indirect manner.

The great TV personality Larry King in one of his interviews said:

I don’t think I was a very good father when they were growing up because my work came first.

The founder of the giant retailer chain IKEA Ingvar Kamprad had very similar observation. He, just like Larry King, also said that if he could he would go back and spend more time with his kids.

Richard Branson had two young kids (Holly and Sam) when he put his life on the line attempting to fly non-stop around the world in a hot-air balloon in 1997. And it wasn’t the first (or the last) time he decided to risk his life for his passion. Here’s the letter he wrote to them (in case he died)

Source: Amazon.com: Losing My Virginity eBook: Richard Branson: Books (free preview)

His attempt at a round-the-world balloon trip ended when he and two copilots had to land in the Algerian desert because of technical problems less than 24 hours after taking off from Morocco.

I think this selfishness (this tendency to put your passion first) is one of the oddities of having a passion in life, one which, in my opinion, is not stressed enough. It’s like everybody wants to have passion today, but few appreciate its shrewd nature.

This selfishness was also the biggest factor which led them (and people like them) to greatness.

It is also responsible for their ability to help others, make new discoveries, cross new boundaries, redefine what is possible for us, open new doors, inspire/ awe/ teach others — to simply leave the world a better place than it was.


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