The What, Why, How, and Who of Seizing Your Passion!


I am not a professional coach, mentor or speaker. I do believe, however, that we can all be coaches, mentors and thought leaders to each other if we so choose. I do believe that by sharing our ideas, stories, experiences, challenges and successes, we can all learn from each other, inspire and empower each other and grow together. That is the whole premise behind the Seize Your Passion platform and community; and that is why I decided to create and build it.

Last week, I posed a rebuttal argument against all the debunkers of passion; all the naysayers who say: “Don’t listen to that finding your passion, or pursuing your passion crap.” My rebuttal argument was grounded in the belief and conviction that those naysayers are not mistaken in why they debunk those of us that do believe and preach pursuing your passion, but rather that they are mistaken in how they define the notion of what finding your passion, pursuing your passion, or the language I choose to use as a way of more accurately defining the concept – seizing your passion- actually means.

I talked about how it’s not about sitting around passively waiting to magically or serendipitously find your passion hidden under a rock somewhere, or stumble upon it in your backyard. I also talked about how it’s not about having one singular passion or purpose that never changes. Finally, I talked about how seizing your passion does not necessarily have to be tied to your career or a job.

Building on that is defining passion as a form of electricity that’s always there; and is up to you to turn on. I came across this definition by Darren Hardy – one of the giants in the personal development and success coaching world, and a tremendous coach, mentor and thought leader to me, and to many many others. Darren describes and defines the notion of passion in this way; and I love that so much because it is precisely what the language “seize your passion” exemplifies.

Darren breaks down that idea into four light-like switches you can turn on to ignite that passion electricity force:

Switch # 1 – The What. Turning on the Passion for What you do. This is the most common switch people associate with the notion of finding or pursuing your passion, expressed by the popular saying: Do What You Love, and Love What You Do. Some of us are lucky enough to love what we do, and do what we love. But even those of us that are so lucky know well and good that we don’t always love every aspect of what we do. We also know that sometimes we can love what we do, but it’s not necessarily lined up with our career or our job.

I love doing yoga. I love storytelling. I love traveling. I love creating stuff and brainstorming. I love parenting. I love learning and growing. I love dreaming and creating goals. I love engaging in really deep, thought provoking conversation. I love loving. I love achieving success. I love being productive. These are all passions of mine turned on by the “What Switch” – I love what I do when I’m doing those things. However, some of those passions have never had anything to do with my career, nor will they ever. And, the ones that do or have in the past aren’t always turned on by the “What Switch” because I don’t always love every aspect of what I’m doing all the time when I’m doing it.

But, it’s not the only switch you can turn on.

Switch #2 – The Why. Turning on the Passion for Why you do what you do. I love this switch; and it’s an extremely powerful switch for me personally. You may not always love what it is you’re doing, but you are super passionate about it because of why you are doing it. This is the ultimate existential question – why are you here. What are your beliefs and values. What purpose does whatever your are doing serve? If you can tap into and turn on your “Why Switch” – I believe it’s electricity current is one of the most powerful passion igniters of all.

Switch #3 – The How. Turning on the passion for How you do what you do. For me, this is the hardest switch to turn on if I don’t have the what or the why switch turned on already. But, some people know how to turn on their “How Switch” to seize their passion even if they don’t love what they do or have a compelling why. Whatever they do, they bring zest, zeal and joy to. Even if it’s something they don’t particularly enjoy doing but simply have to do. Even if it’s something that has no why behind it other than it must get done or be done. I applaud people who can turn on this “How Switch” on its own. I can easily turn on my “How Switch” and have great passion for how I engage in something, but only if my “What Switch” or my “Why Switch” are turned on first.

Switch #4 – The Who. Turning on the passion for Who you do what you do for. Any parent can relate to this switch. You may not love what you do all the time or any of the time, you may not love your why or have a why, and you certainly may not love how you do it; but, you can easily seize your passion by turning on your “Who Switch.” Who are you doing this for? Who is this serving? Parents are innately driven by their passion to serve their children; to create something of value, to build something, teach something, do something for their kids. You, parent or not, can turn on the same “Who Switch” and ignite your passion by tapping into and connecting with who you are serving. So many non-profits, charitable organizations, game-changers and leaders in this world are seizing their passion simply by turning on their “Who Switch.”

I encourage each and every one of you, as I encourage myself, to seize your passion today and every day, whether you do it by turning on your what, why, how or who passion electricity switch.

Watch all of our live streams on this topic and more here.

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