Are you really passionate about what you are doing?
Being passionate about doing something is not the same as having the energy to do so.
I took a deep dive into understanding why I am no longer “passionate” about doing the things I have done. Do you wonder why we tend to give up our passion projects whenever reality kicks in — growth, financial stability or joy? Because you need the energy to do so. Relying solely on passion without having the energy to do so is bad.
Here are some of my real-life experiences.
The Passion for Music and Performing.
I love music. I love to play the guitar and, I’ve always wanted to be onstage. I picked up the guitar at an early age without proper training and I was composing masterpieces every day. Well, noise to be exact. Long story short, I made it. I was performing full-time in pubs and, I was teaching the guitar. During the start, I will always look forward to being up on stage or teaching my students. However, after a decade of repeated chores, it felt like a drag. I was tired and, I did not want to do them anymore. If I was passionate about music, how did this lead me to give it all up?
As a performer in pubs, you are hired for a reason and that is to entertain the crowd and bring up their sales. I love to perform but I dread entertaining the drunks. Nights of cigarettes and alcohol took a heavy toll on me. I felt underappreciated and tired as the days go by as it was mainly about getting the drunks drunk. Even if I poured my heart out into playing a song, it doesn’t matter anymore. The bands are there to entertain. Soon after, I no longer have the energy to carry on and my passion died. I would rather play to a crowd of 5 who appreciates my music than a crowd of 500 who are there just for drinks and chatters. Similarly, when I teach the guitar in schools, I don’t get to choose my students. Most of the time, parents pay for their kid’s lessons as a pastime and, these kids have no interest in playing the guitar whatsoever. Then, it became more of a disciplinary class rather than a fun-filled one. I do not have the energy to carry on.
The Passion for Dogs.
I love dogs. Dogs are life. I served as a police officer in the dog unit and, my buddy back then was a German Shepherd named Ford. Every day, we would patrol the prison perimeters together and, during our downtime, I would tell him about my day and even strum and sing while he stares at me blankly. Soon after I left the force, he passed on. I worked as an admin guy at a vet. I get to play with dogs and other cute animals every day and, It was one of the best jobs I’ve ever done. Eventually, I got bored and, I left the animal world.
Going for duty with Ford was a joy. But when it comes to policing work, I was not a fan of it. I was serving my national service back then when I got into the force. There wasn’t a strong enough reason to join the police force… I was merely just passing time and getting it over and done with. Thankfully, I was posted into the k9 unit and, it was a pleasant experience in all. I love my dog but not policing work. I love the animals but not the administrative clinic work at the vet.
If you have the passion for doing something but not the energy to follow through, you might want to take a step back and look at it from afar especially if you decide to make a living from it. When reality kicks in, you have to draw a line. Do I want to go all out with this passion project of yours or take a step back and, get a job to support it first? Many of us tend to jump the gun. We love to chase our passion-driven goals but whenever we hit a plateau or hit something undiscovered, we give up and, there goes our fire.
Today, I work as a content creator for companies, businesses and entrepreneurs. My passion is to create the best visual media for my clients that best represent their stories. However, the energy that drives me through the ups and downs is to help them — no matter the costs. Even if it is a boring job or a genre that I hate, the energy I put in to help them exceeds all the negatives. I love to create visual content that helps my clients.
In summary, we must be prepared for the long haul if we want to chase our passion-driven goals. Having a fiery passion for something that you love to do without thinking about the energy that can drive you through will hurt your passion. Without the drive to help my clients, I would have given up on visual creation. When it comes to corporate companies or businesses, it gets mundane and repetitive which in turn will kill your creativity. Imagine taking corporate headshots for a month when your speciality is music photography. Imagine shooting real estate reels for a month when your speciality is wedding videography. We need to have the bigger picture. The energy to pull through all the negatives and keep our fire alive.
Sometimes, after a long day of creating visual content for corporate companies, I will set aside some time during my free days and shoot the things that I’m passionate about. We need to have a balance. We need to have the energy to drive us through the day and, we need a bigger picture in play to grow our passion-driven goals.