Over the course of one month a couple people asked me “What are your passions?” Whether or not the question was asked seriously, it made me think seriously. What am I passionate about? My initial response was uncertainty. Really though it was uncertainty about how to package my passions. If you asked me about my passions 2 years ago I would have likely recited a list of dozens of things: “running, yoga, starting companies, technology, the environment, food, acting, etc”, but to me those seem like interests not necessarily passions.
This insight intrigued me so I looked up passion & interest in the dictionary:
- passion (noun) = any powerful or compelling emotion or feeling; strong amorous feeling or desire; an instance or experience of strong love or sexual desire
- interest (noun) = the feeling of a person whose attention, concern, or curiosity is particularly engaged by something; something that concerns, involves, draws the attention or, or arouses the curiosity of a person; concern; importance
Clearly there is a difference…mostly relating to the strength of feeling. Thinking about this further, I find I have many interests that are similar…leading me to categorize my interests into buckets of passion.
Creating Value. or Purposeful Creation. Creating things that create value in the world. Whether delivering gelato that makes people happy, commercializing a technology that saves money or lives, or writing a song for someone special.
Discovery. I love discovering new places, people; trying & learning about new things; discovering better ways to do things; adventures; new experiences; learning about people; or even discovering something new from something old. Spending time talking with someone, discovering his/her story & learning about what gets him/her excited. Exploring a new city, discovering local shops, hidden gems, & beautiful scenery. Finding a new running or biking path. Improv is all about discovery. Life is all about discovery. Discovery energizes me.
Healthy Living. I strive to be the best version of myself I can be. My passion for healthy living is the reason I can pop out of bed at 5 am to go for a run or do a intense workout. I could spend an entire afternoon cooking foods that fuel my body, make me feel healthy,
People. Family, friends, relationships. I enjoy helping people, contributing to others success, helping them grow. One of the most satisfying aspects of running a business is teaching people, having a role in & witnessing their growth, & then staying in touch over their life & helping them along the way when I can (e.g. writing recommendation letters, hearing how their time working with me impacted their life). I think People is related to the other 3 passions, because I can do all those things alone or I can do them with other people. For example, discovering a new place, traveling…I have done this alone & I have done this with other people. Sometimes it is really nice to share those discoveries with people I care about.
I think knowing who you are you are is a continual process/discovery that never ends. I continue to spend time with myself, quiet, reflecting on what is important to me, my passions, my goals.
mel, the venture gal