Passion Can’t Be Faked
Welcome to the last week of my tenure at Daily Fuel! This is the second-to-last edition of a four- part ﬁnale in which I revisit some of the most important lessons I’ve learned over these years. Today: the oft-revisited topic of passion.
I’ve had a strange relationship with passion as a concept. This publication spends plenty of time encouraging people to pursue what they love, and I certainly think that’s worthwhile. But my own feelings have certainly evolved with time.
For years, I was determined to have a passion. I wanted nothing more than to say I loved an activity so much that it deﬁned my entire existence. I wanted to wake up every morning with only one task I wanted to do, and devote every waking hour to improving my ability to do it. I looked at the way great guitarists, chefs, and athletes approach the world and said “I want that.”
I was studying ﬁlmmaking, so I ﬁrst convinced myself that movies were my passion. Which isn’t a lie, but it’s not entirely true. I love storytelling, but my dedication is far from some of the cinephiles I know. Then I tried to pivot in a more general direction and say that my passion was writing. Again, I like writing, but nobody is ever going to confuse me for the people who view it as their absolute favorite pastime. If you told me I could never put words on paper again, I’d be onto something new soon enough. I’m just somebody who likes a lot of things. I’m probably never going to ﬁnd that one passion that fuels me from cradle to grave, and that’s perfectly ﬁne. With time, my worldview has evolved and I’ve realized it’s okay not to ﬁnd a passion, and that you can’t force yourself to have one.
These days, I’m more of a fan of Joseph Campbell’s saying “ﬁnd your bliss.” Life is short, and you should always pursue the things that make you happy. But you don’t need just one. And you’re allowed to change your mind. And you’re allowed to just like something, without lighting a ﬁre inside yourself and saying “this is all I’m ever going to do.”
In short, passion exists. If you have a passion, by all means pursue it. But if you don’t, cut yourself a bit of slack. Last I checked, life is meant to be lived, after all.
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