When that alarm goes off on Monday morning, are you excited to start your week, or are you dreading it? Chances are good that you can build more passion into your life and work by introducing four new techniques into your daily routine.
- Start with Intent
It’s one thing to say that you’re passionate; it’s another thing to really understand your particular passions and set an intention each day to use them. Research has identified that we all function with three major passions (out of 10 possible passion archetypes) that serve as our fuel line for happiness. One of the best ways to set your daily passion intention is to start each day reviewing what you’d like to accomplish. Rather than merely preparing a to-do list, think more deeply about how each of your passions can be applied to the activities that you need to accomplish. Get specific about the moments or situations where you can apply your passions to accomplishing goals, and go for it!
- Link Your Passions to Your Purpose
Once you know what your passions are, it’s a lot easier to see how they are related to your purpose in life. Passions are the outwardly visible expression of purpose, so looking closely at your passions can tell you a lot about the deeper purpose that drives them. I have a Healer passion, for example. When I look back at my life, I can see that an overarching purpose that I’ve carried is to be a Healer. It’s shown up in the things I’ve chosen to study (medicine and science); it’s shown up in my career path (I’ve grown from a researcher, to a team and leadership coach, to an author of a book on purpose and passion, to a host of an online show about passion….and who knows what’s next!); and it’s shown up in the roles that I play in the relationships that are most important to me. One British study of 9000 people shows that finding the connection between your passions and your purpose will not only enhance your life, it will extend it. Follow the thread of your passions back to their origin and you’ll find your purpose there waiting to greet you.
- Look for Beauty
People, who successfully use their passions on a daily basis, take time for reflection and meaning making. To do so more effectively, create special places for reflection in your surroundings (at home, in the office, or out in nature) where you are enveloped by beauty. Science shows that beauty is an elixir for happiness and reflective thinking because it introduces us to the extraordinary, sometimes through things that are seemingly ordinary, and it provides us with a sense of our place in the larger world around us. Where you choose to make your home matters, of course, but even a simple vase of fresh flowers on your desk, a stroll through the park, or taking time to sit in a gallery full of breathtaking paintings can provide all the beauty you need to get into that reflective place. Find your source and plug in.
- Check Out so you can Check In
A very successful CEO that I know spends the first hour of his day setting his intent through meditation. What’s special about his approach is not so much the hour he spends reflecting every morning or even how he does it, but more importantly, how he uses that hour later in his day. Before going into any important meeting or engaging in a critical conversation, he takes himself away from everyone, for just a few minutes, and reconnects to those early morning moments. He disconnects with the crowd so he can reconnect with himself and asks, “What is the highest purpose that I can bring to this interaction?” Taking time each day for a shot of silence that allows you to re-center will help you better focus on how to apply your passions to what matters most.
Bottom line: Using your passions is a daily practice, but it’s not hard to get started. The benefits of doing so are immeasurable; you can improve your job performance, bring more happiness into all aspects of your day, and live a higher quality, longer life. What’s not to like about leveraging your passions?
You can discover more about your passions here.