Can you win without trying? Can you come out on top with minimal effort and focus? Can you take the trophy without having that need pushing you to become better, stronger, faster, smarter?
Yes, you can. But you cannot — I repeat, cannot — become successful in an area about which you are not passionate. It is impossible. In fact, it’s a logical contradiction that can’t be overcome.
If you are never passionate about anything, then you will never be successful in anything. Think about that for a minute.
To be successful is to achieve a desired aim.
That’s one of the more common definitions of success: achieving a goal or desired aim. I, for one, believe that this is an insufficient definition, or at the very least, a deceiving one. It makes it seem that as long as it is wanted, any goal or aim, can result in success.
This simply isn’t true. Achieving that which you desire is a success, but that does not make you successful. You may be successful in achieving that aim, but you won’t necessarily be successful as a person.
It is important to differentiate between what it means to succeed and what it means to be successful.
I succeeded in waking up this morning and getting out of bed. However, I didn’t go celebrate afterwards – it’s a success unworthy of praise. To be a successful individual, you must succeed in something that you and others will deem as something worthy of mention.
In other words, you have to succeed in something that most others cannot accomplish.
It’s winning a competition and beating others to the finish line. Many may argue that this sort of competitive approach can do more harm than good, which in part is true, but you can’t change the true definition of success to make yourself feel better.
The pursuit of success itself isn’t harmful; what is harmful is pursuing the wrong purpose.
Most people fail because they are pursuing the wrong goal. Growing up I was, apparently, a very talented dancer. On a national level, I was one of the top two dancers in America. However, dancing was a hobby and not a passion.
Whatever passion I did have at first faded away over time, and that’s okay. Thankfully, I was brave enough to drop it and move on to something more worthy of my diligence and intellect. Countless people pursue things that they don’t particularly want to pursue.
Parents or friends are the influencers pushing many people. Others push themselves because they believe in an idea that holds little validity. Many of us create a dream that cannot exist in our reality, but pursue it blindly because we either don’t know all the information or refuse to accept that information as truth.
It may take time to find the right cause, the right pursuit, but that’s simply the way these things work.
As human beings, we don’t enjoy experiencing uncertainty. We try to avoid it as much as possible and hide from it whenever we can. Life itself is nothing more than an array of uncertainties arising from and followed by more uncertainty.
We don’t like leaving things open-ended; we prefer to have a direct path of travel mapped out ahead of us. Unfortunately, finding what you ought to pursue, finding that passion, takes time. It takes research, experience and many mistakes and detours.
In fact, one of the most difficult, and most important, parts of life is finding something to devote yourself to; finding that passion that will give your life both meaning and happiness.
One of our saddest moments is the moment we realize we spent too much time doing something we shouldn’t have been doing; we spent our most precious currency on things unworthy.
Mistakes and poor decisions are only that if you don’t learn from them and bounce back. The mistakes we make in our lives are the bricks that pave the road to our success.
It’s what we learn from those mistakes and what they teach us about ourselves and the world that allow us to become the successful and passionate people we are meant to be.
If you don’t screw up, then you can never succeed. If you never make mistakes, then you simply aren’t trying hard enough to do anything worth doing.
Without passion, you will never feel successful – not because you didn’t succeed in achieving an aim, but because that aim wasn’t worthy of your effort.
Success is entirely and completely subjective. What I consider a success you may consider as nothing deserving of praise – the same goes vice versa. What really matters is what you believe.
Are you proud of yourself? Did you push yourself to go beyond your limits or did you just coast? Were you hungry to do more, to learn more, to create greater creations? Did you change yourself in order to be capable of achieving the things you wished to achieve?
Most importantly, what is challenging and did you love it?
The best definition for passion is “a challenge that you look forward to conquering.
Passions aren’t passions because they are easy to accomplish. That would make your passion short-lived, as well as unsatisfying. People are passionate about things because they see questions that remain unanswered.
People are endlessly curious creatures, as long as they find something they are curious enough about. Finding this curiosity is the goal of our lives because, without it, there is no passion. Without passion, success doesn’t exist.