Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Passion Needs Patience

We all have passions. Many which remained unfulfilled, even unspoken. Passions tend to run wild in the face of worldly order. So taming them takes patience. A great deal of patience. More patience that you can ever imagine and possibly ever give.

And the reality is stark. Not everyone can fulfil their passions. Not everyone is patient enough.

But to those who are patient - or at least, those who think they are - three perilous stages lie ahead.

Enter Zen-man

Picking Your Passion

What are you passionate about?

Reading up a ton of books? Learning how to paint?

Nope, try again, please. Those are pastimes, not passions.

That is not to say you can't be passionate about your pastimes. Yes, of course you can. But 'passion' here refers to something purposeful and impactful. It's got to be. Otherwise, we'll all be passing off lazing on the couch, watching TV and munching potato chips as our 'passion'.

Write your own bestsellers. Draw your own masterpieces.

Ah, now you're talking! Those are passions worth pursuing! Don't just consume stuff, but create your own!

So what are you passionate about that you would devote your lifetime pursuing and perfecting?

Yes, you can only pick one passion. Not two, not three. Just one.

Why just one? Because if you really want to be great at something, you gotta give it your all. Because if you really want to rake in maximum returns, you gotta put large chunks of your chips into the pot. Do just one thing, and you'll do it well.

So how does one pick their right passion? Well, by a lot of thinking, exploring, learning, and yes, trial by error. You need to expand your horizons to know which direction to set sail to. You need accurate maps, reliable deckhands and a damn good ship. Yes, picking the right passion is a gruelling journey even before the real journey itself.

Haven't quite figured out your one big passion in life? It's alright. It'll come to you, eventually. You just have to spend time and energy looking for it. And that takes a lot of patience.

No, this is not what Steve Jobs does in his basement growing up

Pursuing Your Passion

Great, you've found your passion and pass the first phase. Hooray!

Okay, that's enough, put down the champagne bottle and clear up the confetti. Don't get carried away just yet. The real journey is only about to start. Where the waves are choppier and storms heavier.

Few will believe in your dream, yet your mission is to win the hearts of many.

Fear will gnaw away your convictions, yet your faith is what holds you together.

Fail and fail you will, yet your success is never guaranteed.

Let's face it. Not everyone who sets out on this perilous journey will reach to their desired destination. Most will get lost, give up halfway and never set foot on the shores of paradise.

Worse case, you might return as a broken person, humbled tenfold and vowing never to trust in your passions and abilities ever again.

Raw skill is not enough. And neither is wisdom. To pull through till the end, you need to stay the course.

There will be stormy and sleepless nights aplenty. There will be mutinies rippling through the ranks of your disenchanted crew (and even your trusted lieutenants). There will be lonely moments where you wish you could turn back the clock so that you would not have embarked on this fool's errand at all.

Your mind will break, your body will fall. Oh yes, they will. Definitely. Over and over again.

Patience. You need it. Lots of it. Without it, you will be swept away by the ruthless waves and drown in a whirlpool of sorrow.

Patience. It'll steady your ship and steer your way to the shores of paradise.

Even Captain Jack Sparrow - no stranger to betrayals and disappointments - knows that patience is virtue

Perfecting Your Passion

So once you've tasted the fruits of your passion, what's next?

Well, plants more seeds, of course! Expand into an orchard! Ship back your bountiful harvests to the cities so that the rest of humanity can enjoy the sweet nectar of paradise you have discovered!

Alas, I have to stop here, I'm afraid. I've barely taken the first few steps on my own journey. So I am really not qualified enough to explain any further.

But I can say this - never stop perfecting your passion, even if you've discovered a dozen more islands and tend a hundred orchards. There's always room for improvement. There's always space for growth.

As long as you have patience, your passion will keep on running and running.

A Life Of Passion

Fine, so you've truly reached the pinnacle of your passion. Kudos, well done!

Time to retire on a deckchair and enjoy the sunset? Hell no!

Pick, pursue and perfect a new passion! Sick with sailing across the seven seas? Then trek into the mountainous jungles to discover a lost city of gold or two!

Embrace a life of passion. For passion, coupled with patience, may take you to paradise.

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