Don’t follow your passion – foster it.

My last post was somewhat-obnoxiously but somewhat-accurately entitled “How to Become Better”, and it featured summaries of videos and podcasts that outlined strategies and theories relating to self-improvement. These were not strategies to attain such contentious goals as eating better, achieving mental peace, or weight loss; indeed, the summaries I shared were strategies to connect with external and internal resources for achieving whatever goals you wanted to.

One of those podcasts by Freakonomics Radio featured a woman by the name of Angela Duckworth, who is a PhD in psychology and studies high achievers and the concept of “grit” or stick-to-it-iveness. I stumbled across a New York Times article yesterday that struck a chord with me before I even got past the title: “Graduating and Looking for Passion? Just be Patient.” As I read through the first couple of paragraphs, I suddenly felt that I was familiar with what was being discussed, and checked to see if the author was – yes! – Angela Duckworth.

I highly recommend checking out this New York Times article on fostering – not simply finding – a passion. If you’re similar to me, you have wanted an “ah-ha!” moment for some length of time (I’ve clung to this phrase since a presentation I saw nearly 5 years ago); Duckworth’s article ties back to my previous post and reminds me that I have control over a passion coming to fruition.

One of the most significant takeaways for me was that one might have to go with the option that makes the most sense and is better, not worse, even if it doesn’t seem ideal.

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