Passion is the default action you’d take in the absence of resistance.
In other words, if money, restrictions on your time, and responsibility were no longer issues — so you could spend time any way you want — what would you do?
For me, it’s clear: improve lives.
I like to do this in various different ways, albeit through health advice, pain relief, assisting with freedom for close friends and family, or by spending quality time with those I love. In the end, it’s all the same; I like to improve lives, my own included.
I have a burning desire to do this. It’s what I think about when the world gets quiet. It’s what fascinates me when I have an ‘ah-ha’ moment, and it’s what ignites the passion inside me to burn indefinitely with a tiny spark. The highest intention of all my prayers is to improve lives.
How about you? How do you like to spend your time? What would you do if money, time, and responsibility were no longer concerns? Think about this, if the answer isn’t immediately clear. Close your eyes, sit on it, and then search your soul for the answer.
It doesn’t have to be ‘doing good’ if that’s not you. It doesn’t have to be anything ‘world-changing’ if that doesn’t feel right, although often times, passion is paired with our highest intentions. More often than not, you’ll find your passion has to do with leaving an impact with your life, or proof you were alive.
For some people, passion can be as simple as going fishing, because it creates a feeling of being fully alive. For others, it might be saving the planet, because of the feeling associated with making an impact and imparting wisdom on the world. For a third group of people, it could be raising children, because of the feeling you experience by knowing you’re making an impact on someone you love.
No matter what your answer is, it’s important to understand your passion is rooted in doing what makes you feel the best. In other words, you are chasing a feeling, not an outcome.
For me, I feel my best when I give. Giving health, improving lives, taking away pain, making life simple, and enjoying myself all produce the same feeling; my favorite feeling: bliss.
Remember, bliss is what you’re seeking. Find passion in that which creates bliss. Then, take a leap of faith and try doing what you’re passionate about with most — if not all — of your time. When friends ask me how much I work, I really don’t have a straight answer… do I work at all?
I suppose writing to you is work… I suppose working with my best friends on a new product or program could be considered work, because it earns revenue and puts food on the table for my family. Or you might say that volunteering Physical Therapy is work… but, I don’t even make any money doing that. So, what is work?
If you’re stuck in the mindset that work has to be hard, boring, difficult, lame, and frustrating, you’re bound to continue down a track that feels like you’re wasting your life… or at least a portion of it. If you’re able to connect to the outcome and realize you’re helping your family by sacrificing your own happiness in this job or career, you may find satisfaction. But, you’ll still be seeking more.
“Work” takes up so much time. Not doing anything with our time feels incredibly boring and dissatisfying. So, if we’re going to “work”, why not make it about something that brings out our passion?
Is it because society created a money competition between us? The person with the biggest bank account wins, right?
Trust me — I’ve treated plenty of billionaires who aren’t very happy with their lives. I’ve also treated plenty of Olympic and professional athletes, and even celebrities who don’t like their lives that much. Sure, they find fulfillment in performance, but it’s short-lived.
The real key is to figure out what you love to do, and how you prefer to spend your time. After you do this, the need for ‘more’ will dissipate, and you’ll begin winning the game of life.
Through my travels, it’s become increasingly clear that money and happiness are not directly linked. For some people, there’s an ability to have more fun with a bigger bank account, but that’s only because they are already doing what they love. For others, it makes no difference whatsoever.
You can see this firsthand by going to a poor country, meeting people, and engaging in conversation. I suspect you’ll learn what I did: you’re meeting some of the happiest people you’ve met in your entire life.
Today’s lesson: find fulfillment inside yourself; then apply your passion to everything you do and begin enjoying every moment of your life.
Sent to you with love and compassion,
Originally published at drkareem.com on June 19, 2017.