We’re told as children to focus on our passions. With the assumption that being passionate will help us keep moving when hard gets harder. The climax to this line of thought is an overload of passions! Too many things pulling us this way or that. Should I be a writer, a painter, an industrial designer, a chef? I love them all!
I battled the bombardment of passion throughout my high school years and even into the early years of college. When I was 16, I wanted to be a chef, then when I was 17 I knew I wanted to go into business, but finally at 18 I knew it was Engineering. I was passionate about each of these paths (still am!), but it took something elemental, the essence of a thought to feel what I was supposed to do.
Now, after having a few more years of wisdom I know that passion is cheap. Passion is everywhere and can be fleeting. I’ve learned that passion is an abstraction for something much stronger. The seed that blossoms into our passions is what deserves our attention. Our passions are just symptoms of our systemic need for purpose.
When I stripped away the layers of science, math, and art from my passion I discovered I need to build. Build anything, build something, but I must build. I must create. I never thought of myself as a creative individual, but now I know that is who I’ve always been.