When Passion Is Hard To Find
You've been there. Your alarm goes off in the morning and you find your way to the snooze button. It requires serious effort to mentally walk through the day ahead and getting out of bed feels like something you'd be better off not doing.
Chasing Passionate Work
They say that you've got to "find your passion" and that when you do, you will meet each day with excitement. Then your life will surely be filled with purpose. In positive psychology, the term "flow", also known colloquially as being in the zone, is the mental state of operation in which a person performing an activity is fully immersed in a feeling of energized focus, full involvement, and enjoyment in the process of the activity.
Passion and flow have developed almost a cult following of individuals who are searching for something more. They search for something truly meaningful that they can be a part of and enjoy on a daily basis. The sincere individual no longer wants to pursue a paycheck, but would rather pursue the change that they can bring to their community and the world. This doesn't mean that the paycheck is irrelevant, but a large paycheck can't fill the crater left in a life by work devoid of purpose.
Countless studies demonstrate that money doesn't bring happiness. This knowledge has led to the fad of chasing dreams and pursuing passions. And what of those who get their dream job and are filled with purpose for a time, only to feel disillusioned by the lack of flow they feel just a short time later? Are they doing something wrong? Had they made a mistake in dreaming for the job? Did the job let them down?
It's Not Your Job, It's You
Perhaps we are looking in the wrong place for passion. I am not trying to suggest that you can't or shouldn't be passionate about your work, but there are more important things than a job title. It seems that many are searching for flow and passion in the workplace because the passion in their relationships, sense of community, and in spiritual beliefs have been lost.
Is it possible to live a life of purposeful flow if the most important aspects of your life are being neglected?
That may be a question that each individual must search out and discover for themselves, but if you struggle to feel passion towards your relationships, God, and your community, it may be time to consider some personal changes.
Refocus Your Priorities
Refocusing on priorities is personal and can be a difficult process. At times, we may be so desperate to escape the drudgery of our daily job that focusing on anything after work feels exhausting. Others may feel anxious unless they work 60+ hours per week. Though challenging, a refocus of your priorities may be the beginning of your path to flow.
Spend time with your family. Put the smart phones away and build meaningful relationships with those around you. Volunteer or donate to a cause that is important to you. Reconnect with your spiritual identity and beliefs. Do things that add value and purpose to your life outside of your job.
Making the decision to re-align your priorities and will change your life. Making that change will lead to a life of purpose and flow leading to greater enthusiasm for your career.
So, you want to experience flow? What are you willing to do to find it?