Joel Clark: “Around Passion”

Around Passion

by Joel Clark


It was just another Wednesday at work for me. There I was, bussing yet another table after another group of people left dirty napkins, straws, and silverware for me to clean up for them. During this particular shift, I wasn’t too enthusiastic about working. My mind was stuck on the fact that I simply was not working in a field that I am passionate about. My manager, Dave, saw I wasn’t too happy and preoccupied with my thoughts so we had a conversation about this thought of mine and he said, “Why worry about what your passion is when you can do things passionately?” At first I thought this was a great phrase to live by, but as time went by and my feelings for the job didn’t change I realized passion is not something you can fake. The only things you can do passionately are the things you are passionate about to begin with.

Passion is an emotion that gives us true drive, perseverance, and ambition to pursue whatever we desire. It is a feeling that is bigger than ourselves. A feeling that somehow brings purpose to our everyday lives, and a life without passion, is in some way a life without a feeling of purpose.

Sadly, we live in a society where the dreams turn into getting the bills paid. A society that teaches us to work for the reward of money and income, rather than for ourselves and the unexplainable value of our individual passion, what makes us fulfilled, and work for a purpose. Some people have the pleasure to go through life doing what they love while others take it miserable day by miserable day to just get by. Some work twice as much than the average person for half of the pay, come home and sleep, and repeat the cycle. Trapped in the never ending loop that fills the void for the majority of our life.

Would anyone ideally want to live that way? Not me. I want to wake up to something that makes me excited to see another day. Something that gives life a sense of adventure, and keeps me guessing, “What’s next?” Something that gives me drive and motivation, that makes me feel like I am living in what was once my hopes and dreams and not the systematic and dreadful loop I fear to get abducted into.

I believe that work and life should not be centered around a job. It should be centered around passion, fulfillment, or a purpose; centered around your own reality, and whatever you want to make of your own life. So if your passion is art, pick up the paintbrush.  If it’s music, pick up the instrument.  If it’s writing, pick up the pencil.  Whatever it is, get to it!  We have many opportunities at hand to make whatever we want out of our lives and make whatever we want from this world so why not make it yours? Be the creator, find your superpower, and be your own hero. Live with purpose, live with passion.


(Read all the pieces in This I Believe; featured image from Flickr user Anthony Easton, used under CC license)

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