Rediscovering Your Passions

Do you remember back in elementary school when you were asked to write “I am” in the middle of the page and you had to write all the things that made you you around it? Daughter, brother, reader, athlete etc. If I asked you to do that today, what words would you write outside of your profession and family roles? What are your current passions? If you have difficulty answering those questions, please know that you are not alone. I often ask people to do this exercise and receive blank stares in return.

Two and a half years ago we were asked for the greater good of society to avoid partaking in the events that drive our passion and fuel our zest for life. This was a real challenge in a town like this that runs on social interaction, sports and leisure activities, and organized events. Today, we can freely participate in these activities again and many have jumped right back in full speed ahead. For others there seems to be some challenges in getting back into the things we love most in life. 

Family and career were the two constants in the past years. Many of us threw ourselves into both of these aspects of our lives, for some both were strengthened and for others we began to see the cracks. I often hear from individuals that they are feeling overwhelmed right now and that they have lost sight of themselves. I think this is due to neglecting passion, fun, and enjoyment in life in order to maintain consistency and stability in our lives. I think now is the time to remember who you are in addition to family and work obligations and bring the passions back in. Need some help getting started? Here are a few things that might help:

I am. 
Write out all of the aspects of you. Think about roles, what you enjoy most in life, activities you used to do, and how others see you. Often times that feeling of being overwhelmed comes from not consistently living your values in life. For example, knowing that you are a reader but have not given yourself time to cozy up with a good book in months. Or, knowing that volunteering brings you joy but you cannot remember the last time you did.

Make a list. 
No holds barred just write a list out of all the things you could do if you could do anything. Dream big, then look at the list and see what you could make happen today and plan for in the future. 

Slow start. 
You do not have to dive in full speed ahead. Choose one small thing each day to try and remember that a bike ride in town is still a bike ride and it is okay to build your way back up. Setting up your art supplies or giving yourself a few minutes each day is progress. 

Connect to others.
Make a list of the people who mean something to you in life and make a goal of contacting one each week. If you are in a relationship, ask your partner to have a conversation where you just dream, no practicalities of why you can or cannot do anything just allow yourself to dream and see what emerges. 

One day at a time. 
Take each day as it comes. It is okay if some days are better than others. It is okay to have days full of passion and others full of responsibility. Find the balance and consider making a goal of doing one thing each day that brings you joy.

The content provided in this article is for information purposes only. It is not meant as a substitute for professional medical or psychological advice, diagnosis, or treatment. If you find yourself in distress, please reach out to your local physician who can provide mental health resources in your community.