Look At Life Through The Lens Of Your Passion
This post is for those of you who hate the program your partner watches every evening; who hates taking the same trip to work every day; who has to scroll through endless amounts of emails every day.
This post is for those of you who always wish you were doing something you're passionate about, rather than plodding through the monotonous rhythm of life.
I write this post having just had my nose in a university textbook.
I don't want to sound self-righteous - complaining about having the privilege of completing a college degree - but I hope this is a means for you to relate to the paradox between what I love (play football) and what I don't love (school work).
(FYI - I wish this was my text book. Just as they are dry to read, they are dry to have photos of. So here, you get a photo of me reading Vogue - totally unrelated.)
This afternoon, when I picked up my textbook, I looked at it from a new perspective. Same boring textbook, a different lens.
Looking at life through the lens of our passions is a little thing that can have a not so little impact.
Passion is a form of love. When we do something we are passionate about, our heart becomes full, our eyes wide, our heart starts to beat. Think of something/someone you love.
With these feelings in mind, now think of something that you don't love.
Likely, those feelings will have disappeared in less than a second.
"My heart is telling me no."
A common misconception is that we think our heart indicates whether we love something or not, when actually it is our mind.
But why? Our brains determine the emotional connection (love) attached to our actions.
Every time you do something you love, neural pathways are deepened in your brain, rooting within you the memory of the action and a chemical release that are the catalysts to the feeling of deep passion. When you do something you hate, your brain is less likely to remember the action, and even less so likely to release the chemicals associated to love and feel-good (endorphin, oxytocin, serotonin, and dopamine.)
The heart is often referred to as the temperamental decision-maker - while our mind is more calculating. We can't control the heart, but we can control the mind. With this knowledge, we can regain an element of control over the way we love, and feel passion - knowing that this is rooted in the brain.
Using this control, we can gain power over the way we interact with what we love or hate.
Take reading a textbook, my mind starts to switch off the minute I open it up, look through the dry pages that make me cringe when I run my nails across them and spot an awful picture of two people pretending to laugh. I know I hate reading textbooks, just like you hate watching your partner's TV show or scrolling through endless emails.
But what if, when we did the things we don't like, instead thought of something we love - football in my case, for you it might be your partner or your hobby. Now, every time I read the textbook I look at every concept/lesson/strategy/piece of history in a way that can apply to the way I perform on the football field or interact with my teammates. You may watch the program and pick up on something your partner finds funny or complements a pair of shoes - and bring it up later. See how much they appreciate you noticing the details.
Now, suddenly you are somewhat more interested in the textbook or program. Your eyes have become wider. This is your mind is telling you that this information (TV show) you are taking in, is something you can use to further your passion.
In life, there are times when we love the things we do, but also times when we must do things we don't love. But, all the time, we can choose to do life in the thought of who and what we love - nothing is stopping us there, not even your heart.
See how your passions (partner or hobby) appreciates the way you have broadened your mind to be better with them/it. Gain control over the way you spend your time - knowing that you are doing it for something/someone you love. Take power over the reactions of your heart and mind.
Read a book you think you will hate, observe a bit more on your journey to work, engage with someone new on your email list - do so with your passion in mind and see what new things you will learn. Broaden your mind, further your passion. Who knows, what you could uncover.
Looking at life through the lens of our passions is a little thing, that can have a not so little impact.