Finding Passion @Work
Passion! I have been harping on and on about this for a while now. Because I believe it really is important. I see people going through life daily as if it is a chore, as if the life they are living is it, as if they have been dealt a bad card. And it saddens me greatly. I believe life is a beautiful gift. We have all been gifted with life. A clean slate to do anything you can imagine…. You just have to imagine it. That’s it.
The problem is, we over think things. We over think life, so much that we find ourselves lost in our own minds. Knowing we do not like where we are or what we have become or are becoming, but not knowing how to get out of our own ways. Am I making sense? Example, kids sort of have an idea what they want to be or do when they grow up. Granted, it is limited to what they have been exposed to, but the point is, kids don’t have to think too hard about what they want to do when they are older. Sometimes they have a long list of all the things the would like to do or be…. Enter the adult to tell them they cannot do this or that because of this or that. Sometimes as adults, we have seen that certain careers are ‘great’ (according to us), and we want our kids to do that. Whether they would love to or not is irrelevant. We want them to be doctors, engineers and other fancy sounding careers. And there is nothing wrong with us wanting our children to be the best and have the best careers.
But, we also need to cultivate their passions. Not necessarily for the things they want to do, not only for the hobbies they have. They need to be passionate about life. They need to have passion for everything they do. That passion for life will transcend into every faucet of their lives.
It is possible to be passionate about work, regardless of how repetitive or boring it may be. If you do it with passion, you will do it better and find other better ways of doing it and ultimately be happier.
I had the opportunity to attend the TFG Innovation Day on the 25th May and one of the speakers, Marius Botha spoke about passion… for work. Very few people speak about their work with passion or about them being passionate about their work. Especially in big organisations. For some reason, we think that only people in small organisations can truly be passionate. Marius highlighted the importance of finding something you love to do, something that gets you up in the morning. You could see the passion as he spoke about his work, his commitment to making his customers happy. His passion for his work and teaching led him to come up with an amazing initiative to empower fellow colleagues.
That is what passion is all about. No one can make you more passionate though. It is something that comes from within, that is cultivated from within.
I ran the Spar Women’s Challenge on the 26th May and was impressed, no… astonished at the creativity I saw there. Spar gave us the most boring and bleh tshirts. But most women were not moved. They took those tshirts and turned them into works of art, fashion pieces. They added colour, cut them into different designs, added beads and other interesting things.
It made me think, if we had more people like this, or if we approached all aspects of our lives with this ‘can do it better’ mentality, surely we would have more fulfilled people, happier people and more passion fueled and purpose driven people.
What do you do when you find yourself ‘unpassionate’ at work?
Much as we love to blame employers for everything that goes wrong with our work lives, we cannot blame the company for your not having passion at work.
Take ownership: No one can make you happy(ier) or passionate.
Do more things that make you happy: If you cannot think of one thing that makes you happy at work or that you love to do I am afraid you might be in the wrong place.
Motivate someone at work: Seeing someone else being motivated and happier and doing better at work will also cause you to do the same. Passion is contagious.
Do more creative things: Get a creative hobby or volunteer to do something creative at work, design posters for your team, organise a team event.
Learn and grow: Never stop learning. Even if you think you have learnt all there is, learn it again.