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Leading up to our April course – ‘What makes me ME?’ – we’ll be featuring a series of blogs looking at ways that people define themselves.  Today we focus on passions.

‘What is your passion?’ – that’s a big, interesting question.  At Eyes Wide Opened we see lots of people who already know what their passion is, whether it’s feminism or food, but they aren’t sure how to, or don’t have the confidence to, turn that into a career.

On the other hand, we see just as many people who when asked, ‘What’s your passion?’ have no clear idea – they often have clues and inklings but never express these thoughts.

Identifying a passion is a bit daunting, particularly as the word suggests such a strong emotion.  However, finding the things you’re passionate about and seeing the ways in which they fit together is easier than people expect.

When looking at passions, people often start with things that are tangible: theatre, football, photography, cars – things that they pursue and find it easy to talk about.  If you’re someone who goes on three cycling holidays a year, built your own bike, and can’t walk by the local cycling shop, it’s easy –  cycling is likely to be a passion.

However, if you’re someone who has a of variety hobbies and interests, but nothing you would consider an all-consuming passion, it may be worth taking a different approach.

Instead of searching for all-encompassing passions, ask yourself – what is it that I do regularly, at the workplace, with friends, or at home, that I absolutely love?  This isn’t about big things, just tiny daily things that always pick you up.  Things that absorb you or simply give you satisfaction.  Maybe it’s the way your desk looks after clearing the clutter off of it at the end of every day or watching your son be enraptured by all the fun voices you do when you read him a bedtime story or the satisfaction you get from winning an item for a great price on eBay.  Make a list of all these things, no matter how small, and then take a step back and look at them.

Do any patterns emerge?  Sometimes things that people overlook as passions can pop out.  If you love being there for your friends when they need advice, looking after your dog, and cooking meals for other people – could it be possible that you’re passionate about caregiving?   There are so many other things – honesty, justice, sharing, storytelling, organising  (to name but a few)– that people might not immediately classify as ‘passions’ that none the less guide their lives.  Once these passions are identified, and people begin to flesh them out, they start to develop a deeper understanding of what they stand for and how they can use that to shape a fulfilling life, and possibly identify direction for a career.

If you want to tap into your passion we can can help you to find it?  Our next course takes place on Saturday April 18 and Sunday April 19.

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