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The Zen of Passion

“Not only are you responsible for your life, but doing your best at this moment puts you in the best place for the next moment” – Oprah Winfrey

I don’t want to crush anyone’s dreams of turning their passion into a lucrative living, but I think this article gets it right (click on the title to see the article).  The author suggests that we can, and most often do, have many passions but that doesn’t mean we should dilute our joy in those passions by trying to do it full time to earn money.  The misguided advice we often hear about “do what you love and the money will follow” is not always realistic and can even lead to ruined passions and a dreadfully disappointing life.  Nothing can take the passion out of a hobby like trying to do it for a living. Once you start trying to pay your bills and eat from your hobby it then becomes your job and that includes all of the job like feelings associated with that “time to make the donuts” drudgery made famous in that old Dunkin Donuts commercial from the 80’s.  You might just have to trust me on this point but I can back it up as I have many passions that people often tell me should be used to make a living.  I am a landscape painter with hundreds of paintings stacked up in the basement.  I am a woodworker with boxes of inventory.  I am also a writer with a published book, and yet none of these “passions” have created even a hint at financial independence.   So I toil away at my real job all-the-while dreaming the unfulfilled dream of finding that one thing that sends me into the stratosphere of fame and fortune.  How do I put my passions on the back burner while I work for a living? You might ask…well  I really don’t.  It would be an intolerable existence if I left my passion at the door to my job so I find the passion in my work and that’s what keeps me going.  I tend to follow the Zen philosophy normally associated with “The Art of…” mantra.  I practice doing my work well and look for those opportunities to be creative, to be involved, and to create value.  I look more to the root of my passion, which is my creativity, and I call upon that passion to help me do my job better and to be fulfilled.  This philosophy allows for a greater level of success and the more successful I am at working the more opportunities I have to work on my other passions without depending on them to pay the bills.   


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May 19, 2013 · 3:21 pm