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Perfect Passion Sweet Spot

I really liked this blog post from Harvard Business Review this morning on making your work meaningful.  It made me think of a presentation I’m giving soon on how to find your passion and integrate it, Indy style (yes, for a local audience).  I tried to visually represent what getting in this passion zone looks like, and again, the best I could do was something like this:

Our calling, reason for being here, perfect passion, “zone-zen” place, whatever you choose to call it, lies at the intersection of these 4 rings, methinks.  You have to know what you value, what you’re personally great at, what you love to do (because let’s face it, sometime we are good at something that we can’t stand), and what someone will pay you for. That 4th ring of the pay thing may seem only about money – but I’m also talking that someone might pay you in social capital, or media capital, or some other form of capital that is awesome to you and not necessarily cash.

While preping for this lecture, I asked others how they found their passions.  I didn’t really like the answers.  Why?  Because they were messy.  “I stumbled upon it,” or “it found me,” or “I don’t know – I just accidentally discovered it” were the answers I received.  As a scientist, I get that we all need to experiment to stumble upon our happiness; however, as the pragmatic businessperson, I can’t believe we haven’t yet invented a better way to find our passions…

I don’t have many answers here, just more questions.  Like, who are you?  What do you value? What do you love?  What are you good at?  What are you doing when an entire day flies by and you didn’t even notice?  Answering those tougher questions I think might lead you to more of the center of the circle.  Of course, life has experimentation associated with it as well.

I could be splitting hairs here – six and one half dozen of the other…etc., but at the end of the day?  The universe really doesn’t care how you got to your perfect passion sweet spot.  I think we all should care that you got there, and your life is meaningful in a way that is meaningful to you.  Not that easy, and not that simple, but very, very important.

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