Is Passion Enough?

shutterstock_214581778I think the appropriate follow-up question is, “For what?…Is passion enough for what…?” Guys I have to be honest with you, I struggled with this one a lot. The way I asked the question to myself was, “Is passion enough to change the world?” After internally wrestling this ideal for a long while, I am convinced the answer is undoubtedly NO. Passion alone is not enough for me to change the world.

That bothers me, it literally offended me at first because I’m an idealist. (I’m not sure that acknowledging that you are an idealist makes it better but I feel better about it so there.) I wanted desperately for the answer to my passion question to be yes. I wanted to be able to stand in front of a crowd and look them in the eyes and say, “ALL YOU NEED IS PASSION!!!” I could say that, heck I could probably write a book about it and sell a million copies if I got the right agent and hyped it up enough but it wouldn’t stick. The truth is passion is nothing more than an emotional catalyst. DO NOT misunderstand, if you intend to build something successful, something substantial and something with impactful, passion is 100% necessary but it not enough.

Guys hear me here, my heart literally hurts writing this because I meet people all the time that have the passion to change their lives, to change their career, to change their community. It breaks me to know their passion alone won’t get them there. It takes other character traits and while the recipe is not simple, I want to cover 4 that I think can turn your passion into change.

Tenacity, Courage, Discipline and Community

Tenacity: You see by definition tenacious means, “not easily stopped”. I think this is pretty clear. Impacting your world, by changing your health, changing your career, changing your community will never be easy. No impact worth making will ever be easy. You have to have tenacity, you have to be able to get hit again and again and again and keep going. You will receive setbacks from those close to you and from total strangers but you have to build rhino-thick skin! Andy Mineo, a Christian rapper has a song called, “You Can’t Stop Me” and I think it embodies the reaction you must develop to doubt and hurdles. You put a bolder in my path and I will not turn around; I will find a way to move it! James in my office mentioned the other day that no success story that you read today ever has a chapter about how they didn’t face any obstacles. PASSION + TENACITY

Courage: This may be a sub characteristic of tenacity but in order for your passion to become change you will have to have been courageous. One of my favorite quotes is, “Courage is not the absence of fear, but the willingness to continue in the presence of fear.” When it comes to a journey of following your passion, it will be scary. It may require you to quit your job, or even totally change the way you live. It will undoubtedly cause you to have to “rock the boat”, but true courage requires you to harness your fear and keep going despite it. Embracing fear can save your life. Think about the gazelle running from a lion. Fear is the difference between the gazelle and the lion. The lion is running for lunch the gazelle is running for its life. Chasing passion is like that. You may very well have an entire world working against you and without courage your passion will become something’s lunch.   PASSION + TENACITY + COURAGE

Discipline: I thought about calling this section consistency or having a plan but I think discipline can include both of those. Rarely ever will impact come overnight, and since deep passion is extremely volatile, we should be aware that even the most passionate of people can vary in their degree of passion at different moments. This is where discipline comes in. You must have the discipline to keep following the plan, following the process, and approaching each day as if it matters. Discipline is what guides and drives your tenacity and courage into the direction your passion wants it to go. PASSION + TENACITY + COURAGE + DISCIPLINE

Community: You could also call this help or accountability. You will not start your passion journey with a community, most likely the first few chapters that your write will be solo, but as you go you will need to figure out how to build your community of support. This is totally dependent on your ability to communicate clearly the vision you have painted in your head to others. I do this terribly, a lot! I have had hours upon hours of thinking of my passion and the plan I have to succeed, then someone asks me about it and I word vomit for 3-5 minutes and they look at me like I have 3 eyes. John Maxwell says that, “Leadership is influence, nothing more nothing less.” Visioneering and influence will allow you to build your community to make your passion a reality. You have to have a clear vision and the ability to influence people along your path to join your cause and help you along the way. For more on this section read my post. from a few weeks ago: If you get me there, I will change the world . PASSION + TENACITY + COURAGE + DISCIPLINE + COMMUNITY = UNLIMITED POSSIBILTY

Becoming a person that leaves an impact in the world is certainly reserved for the passionate, but the success stories you hear have much more depth than what we see on the outside. My dream is to help people see their potential and chase their passion. Imagine with me what a world full of passionate, tenacious, courageous, and disciplined, accountable visioneers. The possibilities are endless.

calebCaleb Bagwell/Employee Education Specialist
John Maxwell Certified Leadership Coach
Grinkmeyer Leonard Financial
Toll-Free: 866.695.5162 / Office: 205.970.9088
Birmingham: 1950 Stonegate Drive / Suite 275 / Birmingham, AL 35242
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