Many of you are probably already familiar with Barrie Davenport, life passion coach, author and blogger over at the very popular Live Bold and Bloom. This week she is launching BarrieDavenport.com, a new site that is focused exclusively on uncovering and living your life passion.
Since I know – from all the emails and feedback I get – that finding your passion in life is one very common goal for many of you I decided to mix things up here and took the opportunity to ask Barrie a few questions.
What do you mean when you talk about passion and why do you help people to find it in life?
I like to talk about life passion in the context of what it feels like to be in love.
When you are in love, your entire world feels happier and brighter. You wake up feeling excited and thrilled to be alive. When you are with your beloved, everything else around you fades into the background, and the two of you are focused intently and joyfully on each other. Even life difficulties feel smaller and easier to manage with you are in love.
The feelings are similar when you have a life passion. You experience those same feelings of aliveness and joy. It creates the same aura of general happiness and positivity because it ignites an internal spark of deep interest, creativity, and fulfillment in your life. These feelings provide the energy to deal with all aspects of your life more easily. You gain clarity about everything in your life.
This is especially true when your life passion is attached to a deeper purpose for you. However, unlike the feelings of being in love, the feelings associated with life passion can remain with you for a very long time, maybe forever. Depending on what your passion is and how you make it part of your life, it can be a never-ending source of joy and contentment for you.
I help people find passion in their lives because that is my passion. In my personal search for a life passion, I discovered that my passion is helping others uncover what makes them come alive.
Through my work as a personal coach, my previous career in public relations, and my personal passion search, I learned some very specific strategies for uncovering life passion, dealing with potential internal and external roadblocks, and creating the actions to change your life so you can live your passion.
I know how having a passion has impacted my own life, and I want others to experience that for themselves.
What is the most common mistake people make when trying to find their passion?
That’s a great question, and I've actually written an entire free guide on this topic that I offer at BarrieDavenport.com called The Passion Myths: 6 Lies Keeping You from Uncovering Your Life Passion. Most of the mistakes people make related to finding their passion happen before they begin searching for it.
They make false assumptions or have beliefs about themselves and their lives that simply aren't the truth — or the entire truth. Sometimes they take a few steps toward seeking their passions, only to allow these assumptions and beliefs to get in their way and stop them from doing anything.
Once people address these myths, they can clear the path for themselves and begin their search in earnest. But even during the search, one of the common mistakes is not remaining flexible and staying open to all possibilities.
Sometimes our passion search will take us down one path, but then an idea or situation will occur that potentially leads down another. People sometimes resist exploring this different path because they feel they must “stick to the plan.”
But a passion search can lead in all sorts of wonderful directions. I thought my passion search was leading me to just a coaching career. But it has also led me to being a blogger and creating an online personal development business. I never could have anticipated that when I began my search.
What are your top 3 tips for finding one's passion?
Tip #1: Begin with a blank slate.
While you are searching, try to remain completely open to all possibilities, even if they seem impossible for your life right now. You are capable of doing and changing far more than you initially assume, so try not to assume anything.
Just enjoy the ride – have fun on the search. You can deal with the practicalities of how to make your passion work for your life once you find your passion. When you uncover it, you’ll feel so energized that you will find a way to make it happen.
Tip #2: Expect fear and doubt.
That is perfectly normal. Fear and doubt will creep in at the beginning of the search and will reappear throughout the search. It’s impossible to go through a process of self-discovery and make life changes without the “what ifs” and concerns about your future.
But fears and doubts are almost always smokescreens that your psyche is throwing up to prevent you from taking action. The more you take action in spite of fear, the more confident you will feel and the less fear will bother you.
Tip #3: Have patience.
There are some people fortunate enough to find their passions quickly. But in most cases, it takes time. It can take a year or more to find your passion and then make the life changes to bring your passion to life. I like to view the process of finding a passion as a passionate endeavor itself. When you accept that you are going to begin this journey, enter the process with enthusiasm and a learner’s mindset.
You will discover interesting and exciting things about yourself. You will get to explore and experiment with different pursuits and creative ideas. If you view your search in this way, it won’t be just a means to an end. It will be a thrilling adventure.
There is often a focus on finding and living your passion through your work. But what if you cannot just quit your job and start your own passion-filled business? What can you do then to still live a more passionate life?
This question is one of the main areas of focus for my work at my new website.
You see many bloggers and courses teaching people how to find work they love. Since work takes up such a huge chunk of our lives, it is wonderful when we are passionate about our careers.
But especially in this economy, many people aren't able to quit their jobs to start over. It’s just too risky for them now.
But there are many other ways to incorporate your passion into your life – and your work. You can live your passion through an avocation or hobby. You can volunteer in the area of your hobby. You can begin a small side-business in addition to your day job. And you can even find ways to make your current job more in alignment with your passion if you think creatively.
Even living passionately in one small part of your life can dramatically improve your overall outlook and sense of happiness in life.
What are the two most common questions you get about finding and living your passion? And what are the answers for those two questions?
The first question relates back to the topic of work. “I can’t quit my job, so how can I live my passion?” Again, depending on the individual’s particular passion, there are many ways to incorporate your passion into your life other than through work. It takes some clarity, prioritizing, and life balance to make this work.
When you clear out a lot of the extraneous stuff that is stealing your time and energy, you can open loads of space for your passion.
The second question is always a “what if” question. What if I can do it? What if I’m too old? What if I’m wrong about my passion?
We can “what if” ourselves out of taking any actions. The constant “what ifs” stir the pot of fear and prevent us from moving forward.
I encourage my clients and readers to let go of any “what ifs” until they get to the specific details of taking actions to change their lives. Then they can logically and creatively think through potential issues and address them when they actually occur – rather than worrying about them in advance.
What is just one or a few small steps that Positivity Blog readers can take today to start discovering their passion?
I would invite them to read my free guide on the myths surrounding life passion. That’s a great place to start by eliminating some of the preconceived ideas around the topic.
I would encourage them to give themselves the gift of allotting a few hours a week to devote to discovering their passion. It doesn't happen by randomly wishing for it or doing a quick internet search. It’s a process that involves self-discovery, exploration, testing, and planning. There are plenty of articles and action steps on my site that they can use as a guide.
By giving themselves this gift of time, they are taking the first step on the path and opening the door to a wonderful new life that awaits them at the end of the journey. It will definitely be well worth the time expended for the amazing results down the road.
What are your passions in life?
My primary passion is helping other people come alive with their own passions. I do this through coaching, writing, and teaching courses. I have written a book called The 52-Week Life Passion Project which comes out in November, and this was a very passionate project for me.
I wake up every day excited to get to my computer and begin writing or Skyping with a coaching client. It all feels like fun to me.
In addition to my work, I also have a passion for travel, biking, reading, and spending time with my three amazing children, my family, and my friends.
And that is it. I hope you found this interview with Barrie as helpful and inspiring as I did. If you want to learn more go check out her site at BarrieDavenport.com and get her new free guide, The Passion Myths: 6 Lies Keeping You from Uncovering Your Life Passion.