The Passionate Pursuit of Happiness

July 24, 2006 at 6:12 pm (Personal, Uncategorized)

Long has been the time during which I’ve envied those around me and their passion for something. How some people are capable of being just that passionate to pursue something that makes them completely consumed by happiness to continue doing it over and over again, is beyond my abilities.

I’ve debated why this is for as long as I can remember. Friends have always had hobbies that I am interested in but far to lazy to get beyond trying but once. Colleagues have always shown a drive and desire for their roles; whereas I have made it a career to succeed and excel with as little effort as possible, yet never feeling truly motivated by what it is I am doing.

Not everyone is so passionate or motivated, I am aware of that. However, at 31 and counting, not having really finished anything I’ve begun (including a marriage – though I tried), and not sure what I want to be when I grow up… passion has been on my mind a lot.

There are many things I enjoy doing. Besides the occaisonal long walk on the beach and romantic dinner by candlelight, I enjoy a few short-lived hobbies and the idea that one day, if I play my cards right, I too can be an educator. It’s that kick-in-the-ass ability several of my close friends have that I feel I lack. However, I talk a good show – I have always been a firm believer that if you truly want to do something, you’re the only one who can make it happen.

Self-advice however is the hardest to swallow. I assume that’s why so many people are in therapy. I’ve considered seeing one myself lately but I haven’t been able to make that leap for a couple of reasons: 1) I feel I know myself well enough to see myself through tough times, 2) A good friend is often as good as a $150/hour therapy session, and 3) I want to define more why I feel I would need to see a therapist.

Reason #3 is my latest mental debate. I have begun to recognize that the majority of why I feel unhappy or unmotivated from time to time is simply because I am not doing something that makes me happy or motivated! That simple realization – though seemingly obvious and often felt – is only just now really sinking in. It’s one thing to hear… another to listen. Now, I feel if I’m going to seek guidance from a therapist, it’s going to be one who specializes in career development.

As for hobbies, I have had several and enjoyed them each to a good degree. Crocheting, sewing, painting, jewelry making, baking, etc. Each has been something I wish to pursue further yet I find myself too lazy – too unmotivated – to take the hobby box out of the closet, open it up, make a space on the table, pull everything out… blah blah blah. Cuz then – then! – I’ll have to actually clean it all up later! Oh, and let’s not forget if I am unable to be productive to the degree I envision myself doing. I mean, if it’s not perfect at the end – why even bother?

Though I have always valued my ability to think through – at least fairly well – the course of a project and its possible risks, I am beginning to believe that it’s consuming me. It is a very uptight and lazy way to live. If I constantly put the end before the beginning, how do I expect to truly get anywhere? It’s the fear of the unknown. Of failure. Why bother to do something if I can’t do it the way I envision and then will have to deal with the mess of later?

Driving home from my workout yesterday, I had a bit of an epiphany regarding this situation. It occurred to me that I need to do two things to be a happier person:

  • Let something consume me at least once in my life.
  • Completely fall head over heels in love with something.

If I achieve at these two goals I believe I will have experienced that same passion and motivation – desire if you will – that I witness in those with whom I am close and envy. Letting myself just enjoy the moment… letting myself release my inner tensions. To stop hiding the fear of failure… that I what I believe will make me happy. At least until the next stage of my life.


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