Why is it that some things in life scare us more than others? Make us feel incapable… Stir feelings of anxiety… Or raise questions of ourselves we often don’t want to focus on finding the answers to.
Isn’t it a funny thing to think we are all in charge of our own lives, have the same freedom to do as we please, and yet we can become so timid when confronted with a non-tangible idea – like a simple passion for something you have. At least for me – that is often the case. The very things that excite me also scare me more than anything else.
I love to write, read, and explore – but I tend to desire to do them so perfectly, in such a habitual state that if I fail to do so – I find these passions I have become negatively controlling rather than positively consuming. That I am doing them and the world an injustice. However, what is a greater injustice to myself and the world is not doing them at all for fear of not doing them right. Or for fear of finding out they might take me somewhere different than I thought or planned.
Perhaps the discomfort with passions comes in knowing that you are vulnerable when you do something you love. Because what if it fails? What if others don’t care as much about it as you do? What if you don’t have the time you thought you would have to put in the effort required of you? What if life just keeps moving so quickly that your passions pass?
Another interesting component of having deep passions (at least that I have found) is they sometimes feel as if they exist outside of your reach – and yet – they only place they exist is right within you.
You always have the control. Don’t let the desire to make them into something so beautiful, so specific, so interesting to others that you prevent them from growing organically into what they really are.
Like your fingerprint, your passions are different from everyone else’s. There is no rubric for them. Do not let the world dictate how you present your passions. What form you package your passions in. The content they should include or exclude.
Do not feel in a rush to make them known. But don’t let the overwhelming nature of your love for your passions paralyze you either.
I think what we must do instead is follow our passions with no expectations. Do not pursue your passions according to the expectations of others. And do not feel your passions unworthy should others not find the same love in them that you do. Perhaps passions are meant to merely set us free from the repetitiveness of this world – to remind us of the importance of exploring our own interests…
The older I get, the more I realize how time really does fly. You could spend time wondering if your passion will ever grow into something the world loves – or you could just start doing the little things you love for yourself. Maybe that is the key to following your passions… You protect them – not for the benefit of others – but for your own. For the simple internal reminder that in spite of all the craziness of this world, there remains something beautiful within you that doesn’t burn out.
Don’t start a passion with a plan. Start a passion with a sense of protection. Protect your passion by taking action towards it – whatever that it is that makes you happy.
What I am passionate about is learning about wildlife, helping others to understand the intrinsic value of this beautiful planet, and encouraging others to be their best. I am passionate about writing, about embracing the journey, and as of late – keeping things as simple as I can.
I have learned that in reality – I will never be able to help every animal on this planet and that finding the dream job might not ever happen. With that realization, I also have learned that this is where passions become your saving grace. They don’t require you to apply to them and they don’t dictate a pay grade or a 9 to 5 schedule. They are yours to do as you please with. Embrace them for the escape from the predictable that they are -and for the ideas that they can bring out of you… And who knows – they might pleasantly surprise you in then end!
The Bible also reminds us in Proverbs that, “Those who have knowledge increase their strength.” As I thought about this, I realized that knowledge doesn’t just come from reading a book or going to school. I believe God wants us to have knowledge of the passions he has placed within each of us. And to have knowledge requires understanding of a situation – or in this case – a passion. But because the world demands other requirements of us – our passions can sometimes be deemed unworthy if they don’t produce an immediate financial gain (or another) of some kind. But I don’t think life is all about money, always about moving up, or wanting more.
In fact, my goal right now is to know my passion more as it unfolds through itself – and to grow in strength of it as I do so – not fear.
Looking back, some of the most unexpected adventures I have had are products of protecting my passions – whether I realized it at the time or not. I have gotten to apply my conservation passions at multiple wildlife sanctuaries around the world, earn my masters degree, travel with my best friend, create an awesome website, and become overwhelmed by the unexpected amount of support received through the simple creation of a GoFund me page. I haven’t gotten paid for any of these adventures and definitely didn’t always know exactly what I was doing. I just knew when I decided to do them that they would make me happy in some way or another. I think that is what life is about. Seeing as we all are here only for a short while – why not do things you enjoy – paid or unpaid?
Have I become a world famous conservationist yet like I thought I would when I was a little girl? No. But has this journey ended yet either? No. Right now I just want to accumulate more knowledge about myself, about my passions, and to find no fear in finding out the rest. I want to have knowledge and strength, not routine and predictability.
From now on there is no plan – just doing what I love. Writing about what I feel like. And learning about wildlife and sharing it with you one journey and post at a time. Maybe in five years from now I will be writing to a much wider audience or speaking at conferences about life and our animal friends, but for now – this is more than enough.
Keep it simple. Do what you can – and let that be more than enough for right now.
Thank you for reading,