Find Your Passion

I believe that we are born with a divinely-placed calling in our lives that is continually shaped, encouraged, and challenged as we experience the world around us.  We are here with a meaningful message that creates positive change in the world when it’s shared.  It’s that place inside of us that makes us feel alive, motivated, excited, and also a bit fearful. It’s the thing that is bigger than us that not only allows us to be fully engaged in our own lives, but also encourages others to find that place in themselves.  This world needs some work, and I can think of no better way to make change happen than by encouraging others to live more passionate lives.

Because of this article, I began exploring what my own passion is and what motivates me to be a positive change maker.  My passion really lies in helping families, particularly women, find their voices and overcome the world’s obstacles so they can experience the very best connections to their children and communities.  I believe in every person’s ability to overcome any and all obstacles in their lives in order to obtain these connections.  Along the way, I’ve learned that authentic community is not always formed by common interest but rather by having interest in accepting and loving others no matter your differences.  This belief is what has helped me to find my personal passion to help others find their voices through authentic connection and acceptance.

Stepping into our callings and overcoming fears can be hard work.  The first step is to remove barriers and things that are holding us back.  Living a passionate life often requires us to work through some of the negative messages and physical barriers we’ve surrounded ourselves with throughout our lives.  For example, as I started working in community development around birth and food issues, I was afraid that people wouldn’t accept me because of my lack of formal degrees or certifications on the topics. The only things I had to offer were my willingness to work hard, a desire to learn as I go, and the insight to make small, everyday choices that have grown into authentic change over time.  My message was a sincere belief that women were designed to give birth and mother their children, and that through support and encouragement, they could find joy and contentment.

Whether you are a growing child or an aging adult you were put on this earth for a purpose that is bigger than yourself.  There is something very liberating when we dig into those callings and allow them to shape our everyday lives.  I look at my six-year-old daughter and see all that she has to offer.  She is energetic, loving, caring, and hard-working.  Watching her interact with the world in non-traditional ways (for most six-year-olds) reminds me that if we were to solely focus on her delayed reading skills or inability to catch a ball, we would be missing what she is most passionate and divinely designed to do.  Isn’t that how we should see adults as well?  To begin looking at others and ourselves as whole, complete beings with everything we need to follow our passion.

Quotes from Passionate Kentucky Women

“When we think of ‘pursuing our passion’ I think we sometimes fixate very specifically on our hopes and dreams. The dream job, the perfect husband or family, the life we have envisioned for ourselves. But I think that pursuing your passion has to be much less specific. It is not a journey with a definite end. It lasts for as long as you are alive, as long as you are still meeting new people, learning new things, failing and succeeding, and changing and growing. When we are open, when we can adapt to our own changing minds, then we can pursue our real passions. For me, I grew up knowing I had to find a way to get out of my small Kentucky town and move to the big city, traveling the world and never settling down. And I did that for many years. But today, I find myself on a small farm with my new husband, getting our hands dirty in the Kentucky soil, and starting our life together, quite literally rooted to the land. This is clearly not a specific dream I have been working towards my whole life…far from it! BUT – if you live your life in the pursuit of happiness and fulfillment…then you WILL end up living your dream and reaching your goals. You may even find yourself surprised by joy in a life you never knew you wanted.”

~Hannah Crabtree, farmer at Rough Draft Farmstead

“The journey to finding my passion began by reading Blue Like Jazz by Donald Miller. Miller writes about loving your neighbor as yourself. I began to question how much I really loved myself. I realized that if I cannot love myself I couldn’t love anyone else. Likewise, if I do love myself then I’m supposed to be able to love everyone. This journey led me to a soup kitchen as a volunteer; which led me to a full-time job as an outreach coordinator. Everyday my work was centered on sharing meals and conversations with the homeless and poor of my community. God began to show me the love he has for all of us, and the love that we can have for each other – no matter what our socioeconomic status is. My journey brought my husband and I back to Kentucky last year. I have been honored to serve as the director of HOTEL INC since March 2012. Finding my passions and living those out on a daily basis: The importance of healthy food for everyone, walking alongside those who feel they have no one, and trying to be the hands and feet of Christ to everyone I meet each day.”

~Rhondell Miller, Director of HOTEL INC

“When I started making ice cream for fellow vendors at Community Farmers’ Market this summer, I had no idea of the sweet adventure that would await me.   When a friend suggested that I sell my ice cream at the market, I decided to give it a shot. The response was better than I could have ever imagined. This was the beginning of my Meltdown.  I felt like this was the path that I was supposed to be on, that I finally found what I was supposed to do in life, and I didn’t even know I had been searching for it.  I also hope it’s what encourages others on the verge of doing something great, no matter how big or how small or how crazy it seems, to take those first steps in following their passion. I now have big dreams for my little Meltdown. Who knows if they will all come to fruition? But I’m willing to risk failure in order to find success.” 

~Susan Warrell, owner of Meltdown {simply delectable iced cream} available at Community Farmers’ Market

A few questions to ask yourselves…

– What’s the first step (or next step) I can take to live out my passion?

– What do I have to offer others?  What do others come to me for when they need help or advice?

– What fears or barriers are holding me back from living out my passions?

Deep inside you know what you are being called to do.  It’s all about finding out what might be getting in your way and getting rid of it. Barriers like clutter, distractions, and busyness were keeping me from living the life I was born to live.  It’s not a three step process that ends with finished results, but rather listening to your own intuition and knowing what the next best thing is to keep you on the path to living out a passionate life.  So, I ask, what’s your next step?

After you have had time to think about this a bit I’d love for you to come back and leave a comment with your thoughts!