Three pillars of success
Passion – The uncontrollable emotion
Passion is not something you create, passion is uncontrollable. Passion is something you find. You can temporarily ignore it, avoid it, dismiss it and even will it away but passion will generally win in the end. If passion loses, generally so do you. If you feel truly passionate about something it consumes you, it pulls you towards it, over and over again. The only reasonable contender to one passion is generally another passion, a greater passion.
Passion has the power to get you started. Passion has the power to keep you going.
Passion is energy. Feel the power that comes from focusing on what excites you.
Passion belongs to the curious. Passion belongs to those that are willing to seek it out. Throughout life’s adventures we will experience passions of varying degrees, eventually if we search long enough we find a passion that consumes us. Some find their greatest passion early on in life, others simply don’t explore enough and never find a passion that truly consumes them.
Passion though is an uncontrollable emotion, it can lead us astray. Not all passions are healthy. It is specifically for this reason that we must truly acknowledge that the only reasonable contender to one passion is generally another passion, a greater passion. If you become aware that your current passion is leading you down the wrong path you must search for another. Think of the wrong passion like you would a toxic relationship, it might feel great at times but left unchecked it can destroy you.
Remember passion is generally something we find, therefore we must explore to find our greatest and healthiest passions. Don’t be scared to explore, often the greatest passions are very much like hidden treasure; buried deep and hard to find. Don’t stop searching until you find the passion that consumes you.
Habit – The automation process
Another pillar of success is habit. You hear about bad habits all the time, it seems that everyone has forgotten good habits. The media is all ablaze with references to bad habits.
There is much talk about breaking bad habits and little about building good habits. Habits good and bad are both built. Often we are unaware of the habits we build. Regardless of the fact that we are often unaware of our habit building, it is important to remember that habits are built by the choices we make.
“This is the real power of habit: the insight that your habits are what you choose them to be.”
― Charles Duhigg
Eating habits, spending habits, saving habits, work habits, relationship habits even emotional habits are built by the choices we make. Once built habits practically automate the way we act and react on a daily basis effortlessly. Habits are indeed hard to break and hard to build but it is not impossible. The rewards of building good habits and breaking bad ones far outweigh the effort required.
Habits have the power to shape your life, I will in future write a long series of articles that focus specifically on how to build new good habits however until then I recommend the following book which I found extremely interesting and helpful.
Purpose – The reason
Why are you here? Purpose unlike passion is often a choice. Many people fail to realize that purpose unlike passion is not so much something you find but something you decide upon. So many people spend their life trying to find the reason instead of defining it. The French call it Raison D’etre – The reason for existence. Purpose is something many seek, with good reason. If you know why you are here, if you know your purpose then there is a reason for the things you do. To do things without any reason at all is rather pointless.
If you find it a challenge to define your own purpose, I recommend the quote below to get you started.
Our prime purpose in this life is to help others. And if you can’t help them, at least don’t hurt them.
To live without purpose leaves us aimless, unable to focus and without purpose there can be little if any success in life. How can you achieve that which you have not decided to achieve? If you do not know what you want, how can you ever get it? If you do not know the person you want to be, how can you? Of the three pillars of success the most important one is the one you must choose for yourself. What is your raison d’etre?
“Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?”
“That depends a good deal on where you want to get to.”
“I don’t much care where –”
“Then it doesn’t matter which way you go.”
― Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland
Do not waste your life in search of something that is yours to decide. One of the gifts we have been given is the gift of free will. The freedom to decide for ourselves what our purpose in life shall be. With this freedom comes the possibility of not only choosing our own purpose in life but the ability to change it later on in life. Armed with more knowledge gained through experience we are free to change our purpose.
Seize the day and define your purpose.