I met a man named Michael who told me how much he was looking forward to one day owning his own push broom. No, he wasn’t in the custodial services industry; my new acquaintance is currently an artistic director at a rented local playhouse. Each season, when the final curtain goes down Michael takes up the broom and gives the stage a thorough once over. Pushing that broom across the floor both inspires and reminds him to keep pursuing his dream of one day opening his own 250 seat theater, equipped with broom.
Giant-sized dreams are passion based. Oprah is quoted as saying: “Passion is energy. Feel the power that comes from focusing on what excites you.” Michael of the push broom dream did not start his career as an artistic director; however, he was always passionate about theater. Like many individuals in the entertainment industry, his theatrical career began in the chorus line. Over the years he honed his skills, added significant credits to his acting career and subsequently evolved into his role as the executive of a theatrical organization.
Have you identified your push broom dream? It begins with defining a passion that makes your heart sing. Passion is the foundation upon which dreams flourish and grow. Passion is the driving force fueling your dreams and keeping you going when life surprises you with setbacks, sprinkles in disappointments and erects speed bumps in your path. Passion brings out the incurable optimist in you and provides the positive energy and stamina required to achieve your goals and become the best version of yourself.
Not feeling the passion yet? Granted, it is not always evident. Sometimes it lingers beneath the surface requiring some excavation. Often clients approach me with a desire to reinvent themselves but have no idea where to begin. Here are some recommendations:
• Visit a bookstore. Of the many departments, where do you linger? For me, it’s easy. I could spend an entire day in self-help racks. It was during this very exercise I discovered a passion for coaching.
• Follow your curiosity. I love the scenes in the movie Julie and Julia when a determined Julia Child embarks upon a number of endeavors before discovering food was her true passion.
• Sign up for courses that interest you and attend speaking event to learn more about a subject that piques your curiosity.
• Interview individuals in a profession that interests you
• Another method is to opt for a course like the one created by Janet Atwood the author of several books on finding your passion and discovering your life purpose. You can learn more about her method at www.thepassiontest.com. The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator can also be helpful in determining your personality preferences which can help point to your passion triggers. More information at www.myersbriggs.org
• Do not limit yourself to a singular passion. Perhaps you would enjoy creating a composite career. For example, when my friend Christine left corporate America she discovered a passion for both art and writing. Her days are divided between creating lovely works of art and working on her memoir or writing poetry.
Christine Hall’s “Dance With Me.”
Another friend of mine, Dominique, owns a lucrative computer repair business. She loves her business but is also passionate about public speaking and has earned numerous awards as a member of Toastmasters International.
• Volunteer your services. If the idea of owning your own bookstore appeals to you, start by volunteering at a local library. If you are thinking of a culinary career, ask a caterer if you can assist with prepping and food setup.
• Ask yourself what you care about. I am working with a client now who is preparing to leave her banking career and run for office in her local community. She lights up like a Christmas tree in Rockefeller Center when she talks about having a seat on the city council. What is it that lights you up?
Keep searching and maintain an open mind. Eventually you will uncover your passion and set your sights on acquiring your own push broom.