You’re not alone.
Did you know that only 13 percent of the US workforce is passionate about their jobs?
Finding what you’re passionate about (that work that makes you feel engaged) isn’t an easy task.
It’s not something that happens magically.
You won’t find what you’re looking for by asking others what to do.
Instead, you need to do a lot of soul-searching first.
Trust me. I know what I’m talking about.
Today I’m sharing with you what I’ve learned so far about this topic.
I’m still on this journey. I still feel a little lost, but the truth is I feel a little less lost each day, and to me, that’s progress.
This post isn’t about changing careers or finding what your purpose in life is.
In this post, you’ll learn how to know yourself better, so you feel a little less lost in life.
This post is about finding what drives you, what makes you feel excited and engaged.
It’s about uncovering what makes you come to life and in which areas you can use your full potential.
25 Solid and Proven Steps to Find Your Passion(s)
1. Stop obsessing about finding your one passion
I know how stressful it can be to feel lost.
But if you get obsessed with “finding your passion,” you’ll probably miss essential cues.
Trust the process and be patient with yourself.
People can develop a wide range of passions throughout life.
Instead of wanting to find that single passion, enjoy finding different things you like.
Inevitably, you’ll end up improving in some of them more than in others.
And that’s how you end up connecting several skills and talents and come up with something unique.
2. Understand that finding your passion or passions is a journey, not a destination
It’s not about the destination, it’s about the journey.
Look at it this way:
it’s not about the destination (that a-ha moment when you find the answers); it’s about the journey (all the exciting new things you try and all the exploring you do to discover your real passions).
Also, forget about that magical “a-ha” moment that makes you realize what you were born for.
It probably won’t happen like that at all.
Instead, you’ll uncover it (or them) little by little.
3. Keep your eyes wide open and your attention super sharp
That thing you’ve been looking for might be right in front of you.
Chances are you already know what you want to do.
You’re just too scared to admit it.
I believe (and I think I’ve said this many times before) that we all know deep down what our passions are.
But for some reason, we’re scared to admit it even to ourselves.
Sounds like you?
Think about it and ask yourself what’s stopping you:
- is it what people may think or say?
- Is it that what you want to do isn’t “respectable,” “challenging,” or “prideworthy” enough? According to whom?
4. Start with the right mindset
Surround yourself with people who make a living out of their passions.
Make friends with people who love their job.
Learn from others who came before you.
Read the stories of successful people; this will give you hope and offer you guidance on your journey.
This is one of the reasons why I love reading non-fiction and autobiographies so much.
Because they teach me that no matter how successful or unreachable some people may seem, they’re only human like you and me.
A book that helped me see that was Becoming by Michelle Obama.
When Michelle graduated college and started working a corporate job, she realized she hated it.
In her book, Michelle talks about how she went from an unsatisfied lawyer to an education advocate.
Reading her story helped me understand that just because you feel lost after you’ve finished college, it doesn’t mean you’re a complete failure.
Or that you’ll never find your true call.
More posts you’ll love:
Get to know people who aren’t afraid to go after what they love.
This will help you see that it is possible to enjoy what we do daily and find something we enjoy so much that we don’t mind doing it often.
Also, keep in mind that doing “what we love” doesn’t necessarily mean we’re going to be happy all the time.
So, please pay attention to how hard most people work to make money with what they enjoy doing.
5. Decide if you just want a new hobby
Do you want to find a new activity to do in your free time? Or do you want to change careers?
These powerful questions are crucial.
If you realize you want a new hobby, you won’t mind being patient and trying things out until you find what you’re looking for.
However, if you hate your current job and are looking for new ways to make money, searching for your passion can cause you lots of anxiety.
So, be honest about this question to know if you can just get rid of the unnecessary stress and enjoy the process.
Or if you need to speed it up a little so you can leave that job that makes you miserable.
6. Join aimlief’s 31-day free journaling challenge to find your passion
If you’ve been around for a while, you’ll know that I LOVE journaling.
It’s the perfect tool to vent, to keep a record of your progress, to boost creativity, and, of course, to get to know yourself better.
More posts you’ll love:
- Benefits of Journaling: 13 Reasons Why You Need to Start Journaling Right Now
- 15 Journaling Prompts To Discover Your Dreams
I’ve created a 31-day journaling challenge for you.
I followed this same challenge over a year ago when I first came up with it.
To put it together, I went back to all those years when I felt lost and tried to remember what I was thinking.
But now, thanks to this journaling challenge, I’ve felt way more certain about my future, myself, and my dreams 🙂
So, I highly recommend you do this one yourself.
Pin it for later!
7. Network with new people outside your industry
If you’re reading this post because you want to change careers or find a different way to make money to support yourself, this is for you.
Chances are you’re surrounded by people who do the same thing you do for a living.
Network with people with jobs that are nothing like yours and ask them about what they do.
You probably have no idea how many jobs there are out there.
In my experience, it was helpful to chat with different people on LinkedIn.
Also, keep in mind your dream job might not exist exactly like you want it to be.
In that case, you’ll have to create it (yes, it’s possible.)
Getting inspired by other people’s jobs can help you do just that.
8. Learn from others
Do you have a friend who loves gardening and would love to teach you? Give it a shot!
Ask your friends or family if they’d be willing to share their knowledge and skills with you.
You’d be surprised by how many different things you can learn, plus you’ll spend time with people you like 😉
9. Practice mindfulness and self-awareness
If you don’t know what you’re looking for, you’ll never find it.
If you don’t know yourself, you’ll never know what you’re looking for.
To uncover/discover your passions, you need to be the best at knowing yourself: your values, motivations, fears.
You need to know what motivates you, what drives you crazy, what makes you feel alive.
Practice mindfulness daily to increase your levels of self-awareness and start knowing yourself a little better each time.
An excellent exercise to increase self-awareness is (guess what) journaling!
More posts you’ll love:
10. Understand what motivates you
What makes you keep pushing? What makes you jump out of bed?
In times of trouble, what makes you keep going?
Is it money? Your family?
Your idea of success?
This one’s hard, I know.
11. Ask yourself what you’d be willing to sacrifice for it
You can’t have it all.
What would you be willing to sacrifice for your new passion or passions?
Your free time?
Time with your family?
A portion of your savings?
Sleep? (which I don’t recommend at all, by the way!)
In my case, I have no problem sacrificing my free time for the greater good.
I can spend Sundays writing for my blog or learning about online businesses, and I’m still as happy as a sandboy. 😀
12. Figure out what you hate to do
For me, it’s been easier to figure out what I don’t like about my current job and career than actually finding out what my next path should be.
And I’m pretty sure it’ll work that way for you too.
If you feel unfulfilled or if you’re ready for a change but don’t know where to start, make a list of the things you don’t like about your life now.
Avoiding the things that make you miserable can guide you.
Beware of this one tho and remember steps #11 and #7.
13. Write a list of people you’re envious of
And get honest about your reasons to feel that way.
Oh, boy. We’ve all felt we’d love to live someone else’s life, at least for a second.
Feeling envious of others probably means you’re falling into comparison traps, which of course, isn’t healthy at all, and, for the sake of your mental health, you need to stop doing it.
Remember, you don’t know what’s going on in someone else’s life, so don’t take anything for granted.
However, if you’ve caught yourself daydreaming about the lives of others, take it as a sign and analyze what you want that they have.
Go deep and be honest:
- Is it their looks?
- Their success?
- How satisfied do they seem to be?
- Their money?
- The clothes they wear?
What is it?
What makes you want to trade places with somebody else?
14. Make a list of your skills, no matter how good, or bad you’re at it
If you’re anything like me, you’ll have a hard time trying to come up with a list of things you’re good at.
At least at the beginning.
But, if you try and focus on your skills, no matter your mastery level, I’m sure you can come up with a decent list of practical skills.
So, forget what you know about “being talented” or “being born for something.”
Make a list of skills you’d like to master or monetize, no matter how good or bad you’re at it right now.
15. Merge your skills in a unique way
Once you have that list ready, start brainstorming ideas and maybe ask for help to find a relation between your skills.
Remember, you don’t need to be the best at something to make a living out of it.
The unique combination of skills you have is what makes you valuable.
16. Make a list of all the new things you’d try if lack of money and/or time weren’t an issue
What would you do in your free time if you had all the money in the world?
What would you do in your free time if you worked only 5 hours a week?
Let your imagination run free!
And then use your answers to guide you towards what you care about.
17. Get out of your comfort zone and try things you think you’re “bad” at
I get it.
We’re all naturally good at some things and bad at others.
But we also have the ability to get better at things.
What if your desired passion is hiding behind that thing you told yourself years ago you’d never try (or try again) because you sucked at it?
If you desperately wanted to try something new or learn a new skill, did it, failed, and never tried again, it’s about time you give it another shot.
18. Visualize your perfect day
If you could live your perfect life for a day, how would it look like?
- How early (or late) would you wake up?
- How would your morning routine be?
- What would you wear?
- Would you own a house, an apartment?
- Would you live a minimalist life with little to no possessions?
Picture yourself living the life of your dreams and study every aspect of that visualization carefully.
Think about the food you’d eat, the people you’d surround yourself with, the view from your bedroom window, the activities you’d devote your free time to.
19. Analyze the tiny aspects that make up your favorite moments or activities
Let’s say you were part of a dancing group once, and you enjoyed it a lot, but you quit, and now you miss it.
You might automatically believe that what you loved, and now miss is dancing, right?
But that’s not necessarily the case.
Maybe dancing isn’t your thing after all, but you miss the sense of belonging, or the camaraderie, or the energy, or the music they used to play there.
Break down the activities you’ve enjoyed into tiny pieces like that to try to figure out exactly what you liked about them (or what you didn’t).
This will help you connect the dots later on.
20. Find a balance between rational thinking and intuition
I’m all about being reasonable when it comes to big decisions, but trusting my instinct plays a vital role as well if I’m trying to find out what I really want.
What does your gut tell you?
Is your intuition trying to tell you something?
Find a quiet place, close your eyes and try to silence the voices that tell you you can’t do what you want.
What do you want with all your heart?
Try to balance both your intuition and your critical thinking. You’ll be on the right track and closer to your goal.
21. Uncover patterns in your answers and behaviors
Once you’ve completed aimlief’s journaling challenge to find your passion and given it enough thought, it’s time to face the not-so-easy but still fun part: connecting the dots.
Can you recognize patterns in your answers?
Is there any skill, talent, personality trait, preference, desire, like (or dislike) that repeats itself over several answers?
Can you identify where your answers overlap?
By now, I’m 98% sure you’ll KNOW what you want.
However, admitting it and facing the truth is a whole other step on its own.
22. Beware of resistance
When I say “resistance,” I mean fear, procrastination, and all those mental blocks that stop you from doing what you love.
We’ve talked about this before, in step #3.
What are you scared of?
Nobody in the world can answer that question for you.
Once you’ve listed all the new things you’d like to try and all the skills you want to improve, rearrange the items and place the most relevant ones at the top.
Place as top priority those that feel the most urgent to you.
I know that deep down, you’ll know which ones you need to start doing now and which ones can wait a little longer.
24. Set a date to start
You’re almost all set to start your journey towards finding what you feel passionate about.
Even though this is a process that requires reflection and analysis, it also requires action.
If you never try, you’ll never know. So set a date to start learning and improving.
Don’t wait too long to start.
Use momentum to get the ball rolling. Today.
25. Take a class
Learning about the topics you listed is the best way to start exploring.
Thanks to the Internet, there are many great classes, courses, and learning platforms at your fingertips.
You can find a wide range of affordable and even free courses.
And you can also find high-end information and training if that’s what you’re looking for.
Plus, there’s also high-quality and free information available on the Internet to improve your skills and educate yourself.
One of the best platforms to find excellent and free content is YouTube.
However, if online learning is not your thing, you can still use the Internet to find in-person classes about the topics you’re interested in.
Check platforms, read reviews, pick a course and start learning.
Are you serious about finding what you’d really love to do with your life?
I created a guided journaling workbook I’m sure will help.
It’s called Aspirations, Goals & Dreams Workbook, and it’s going to help you:
- Get clear about what you want and what matters to you.
- Gain clarity and determination by learning more about your true desires.
- Identify the steps you need to take to make that passion come to life.
It’s time for you to learn more about yourself and what you want to do with your life.
Once you get the workbook, find a nice place to sit, make your favorite cup of tea, put on some music, and start writing.
You’ll uncover what your dreams are through these guided journaling exercises.
Coupled with the steps I described here, that workbook is going to help you find the answers you’re looking for.
Go ahead and start exploring.
Forget about excuses; you do have time.
I’m sure you can take the time to reflect, read, and learn.
And if you’re still worried about what others may think of you, remember you can start learning and working on your thing without others knowing it.
Eventually, you’ll get so good at it and so confident, you’ll stop caring about what others may think of you.
Also, remember people spend most of the time inside their heads thinking about themselves.
They probably aren’t thinking about you as much as you believe 🙂