The dictionary defines passion as: “a strong and barely controllable emotion.” Clearly we immediately think of love and hate, but suddenly everyone is talking about “finding your passion.”
Theoretically it is “barely controllable” which makes one wonder whether living in a state of barely controllable emotion is desirable or even healthy. I imagine it would be exhausting.
What sent me down this road you must be wondering. As I mentioned yesterday, in my advanced English conversation classes we read an article on “What Successful People Do Every Day Before Breakfast” and in the list — although clearly not before breakfast — was “find your passion.”
We started to discuss the idea and everyone was rather mystified by the concept, a few were concerned that they hadn’t found theirs. The general consensus was that they had many activities in their lives that brought them great pleasure, but the emotion that passion evokes didn’t make sense to them.
I pointed out that their passion could be gardening, cooking, painting, playing the piano, decorating, etc. At that point almost everyone had a notion of what the concept meant for them, “travel, pastry making, reading to school children, making jewelry and so on.
Maybe it’s simply a question of semantics and/or the evolution of language and, one must admit, “finding one’s passion” has an exciting ring to it. It seems to me that finding that emotion is in the moments when something we’re doing is so all consumingly exciting or pleasant that we are in our own little bubble and we forget about time and troubles.
Some of us were even lucky enough to find that excitement in a career.
When roaming around the Internet to see what others had to say on the subject I found an article that I think perfectly explains the concept. If you have the time and inclination, click here.
It made me feel quite terrible last week when everyone seemed disturbed by their “lack of passion” whereas I think we’ve changed the definition, and why not? Maybe it’s another dimension of the meaning.
I simply think it’s important to take the pressure off of everyone so they realize the idea is activities that give pleasure and maybe even purpose.
What do you think?