If I hear these words, I resonate strongly. Actually, my whole body resonates strongly… I am very aware that almost everything that meant something to me in life, I’ve approached passionately.
Personally speaking, passion has been an indispensable motivator for me to get things done that needed to be done. Passion thrived me, it thrilled me.
I remember being passionate about school projects when I was a kid, I would get upset if things didn’t work out as I planned. I am passionate about my professional dancing career, and EVERYTHING involved with that. Passionate about learning new skills, my professionalism, my relationships, my health, my performances and so forth.
And now, again. I feel very passionate about this new adventure I’m heading off into, the world of blogging. #myreoccuringpassionatereality
I’ve narrowed down that my version of ‘being passionate’ is very closely related to my craving and deep desire to share and create meaningful content. But how does it benefit me and when is passion too much? What’s the core of your passion?
In the dictionary I read that the meaning of passionate is officially stated as follows:
- capable of, affected by, or expressing intense feeling
- enthusiastic, ardent
- easily aroused to anger
- swayed by or affected by sexual desire
When I referred to passion earlier in this post, I was talking about the passion you experience when you do something you feel strongly connected to or inspired by. The passion that triggers great enthusiasm and the passion that makes it possible for you to emerge yourself into it to be able to express yourself deeply.
In this case, it might also mean that it’s the ‘passion’ you put into your work that makes your share essential towards the project/ the art/ the job/ the relationship etc.
The game changer
We all know that essentially any positive trait, when taken to extremes, misunderstood and/or misapplied, can become a burden. Something you will need to take responsibility for.
Just like being too nice can result in developing unrealistic expectations of others or forgetting about being kind to yourself. Likewise, being too passionate can result in being emotionally over-invested, clouding your thoughts, intentions, and leaving you emotionally drained.
And what I’ve experienced personally, and have seen with many people around me… The fine line between mindful passionate and excessive passionate is easily crossed.
As a girl encouraging self-care and a healthy lifestyle (including all colors of the rainbow), I feel obliged to dive deeper into the true meaning of healthy passion-ism and what can happen when it takes you too far.
Positive traits of passionate people
First things first, being passionate is not something bad. It can help you reveal your purpose, get you through rough patches of life and help you see more clearly what’s necessary to achieve your goal(s). It’s not for nothing that being passionate is a positive trait labeled to many successful leaders and influencers.
- Passionate people are often described as people with genuine curiosity, they want to improve themselves, they continuously want to learn new things. Persisting their search relentlessly for inspiration and new idea’s.
- They are courageous. They are willing to step out of their comfort zone because they know they gain much more when they face the unknown. They’ve experienced first hand how being challenged transforms them into being more grounded and on-point.
- Furthermore, passionate people are committed. Not just plainly and simply committed, no deeply committed to exemplary work. Ordinary is not in their dictionary, they will do – whatever it takes – for the ‘extra’ in extraordinary.
Healthy passion vs Emotionally over-invested
All the above mentioned positive traits of passionate people obviously belong to a healthy relationship with you and your passion.
Having ‘healthy’ passion has the opportunity to expose you to unique and life-changing opportunities, to not just you personally but additionally to the community you’ve invested in.
But what happens if your passion clouds your rational thinking?
Being passionate is characterized as having strong emotions, tempered, devoted and full of excitement. An exaggerated version of passionate would logically result in being emotionally over-invested.
Before we go more into this let’s dive into the original meaning of the word passion. It’s derived from the Latin perfect passive participle passus which is a noun of action meaning ‘suffering’.
Yes, you read that correctly, suffering.
The first time I came across this information, I took some time to let in sink in. And it hit me pretty hard.
It hit me hard because I’ve experienced countless times that my passion made me suffer. And not the kind where you suffer for the greater good, it’s the kind of suffering you gain from being too attached to your ego and your ‘products’. Too attached to praise and success.
Chances are if you’d describe yourself as a passionate person you’ve allowed yourself to be pushed by your desire to the point where you are willing to endure pain, suffering, and loss for whatever it is you are focussed on.
This is something you regularly see with artists of all kinds, with (top)sporters, with leaders of big companies and also with people like you and me!
Pain shouldn’t be the game. Self-love should be leading fame.
But life is life and I do believe that if your channel your ‘sacrifices’ – or choices how I prefer to call them – properly, your passion can be of huge advantage. In this case, your passion isn’t unrestrained, you are controlling it.
Passion without perspective or reason can actually serve to distort one’s perception of reality, you can easily get caught up in your own mind games and so-called ‘drive’. Which results in losing yourself on the way.
Passion can get you very far, but you still need to be able to control that gas pedal, or accidents might occur.
Where passion can bring focus and clarity of thought, it’s your over-longing desire that starts to cloud it. In extreme cases, you lose grip of reality. Of what truly matters and what not.
Self-reflection and letting in
Why should you avoid being emotionally over-invested?
Not only do you suffer unnecessarily, it can lead you towards irrational decisions, prideful or ego-driven actions, and poor execution. All things you wouldn’t want if you are passionate about something. #passionparadox
Furthermore, introspection is a great way to realign yourself with your values and personality traits. If you consider yourself a passionate person, it won’t harm to reflect on projects where you believe your passionate side truly revealed itself.
You can reflect on how you contributed to the project and in which ways you were invested towards it. Is your passion creating clarity, focus, and purpose, or is it blinding you? Were you motivated and inspired of did you suffer?
Something else to take note of is that truly passionate people will always try to refine their thinking, therefor checking-in with others and having meaningful and substantial discussions will contribute to their curiosity. Challenge yourself even more by trying to initiate conversations with people that don’t necessarily agree with you, this will help you grow your perspectives and understandings even more.
Emotionally over-invested people tend to either keep to themselves or to surround themselves solemnly with people that think and act similarly… And how does that contribute to your self-development?
Keep in mind
Expressing yourself by being your energetic, spirited, heartfelt and eager self is in no way something you should be worrying about. Keep encouraging yourself to invest in your personal life, your business and relationships with the drive you have, it makes you one of a kind and it helps you achieve your greatest potential.
Channel it in a way that you make sure that you are in control and not the emotions leading it. Be open towards mindful debate and you’ll notice it results in transforming your dreams into deeds.
What do you do to keep control of your passion? #selfcareforthepassionateones