APADIA 6: Why “Follow Your Passion” Is Wrong (and Right)
(I’ve gone through Precision Nutrition coaching, and now am going for certification myself – both of which I’m thrilled about. I’ve discovered a lot of garbage vendors in the health and fitness world, so it’s extra exciting when you come across the ones that are legit. So:) I really enjoyed PN co-founder John Berardi’s article “Forget Career Hacks“. Interestingly, I both agreed and disagreed with him. You should give it a read – but TL;DR, he’s cautioning against conforming too strictly to a long-term plan, and advocating for giving yourself the freedom to pursue your passions.
Which, yes. But. Here’s the thing.
When I graduated high school, and college, I spiraled into depression both times. I felt like I was capsizing at these major turning points, losing stability and support and direction. That’s not a sob story. I was fortunate to have much more than many others get. Things were just messy and I couldn’t find my balance.
Part of what I found difficult in those times was that I felt broken because I couldn’t identify what John calls a “strong personal mission.” I felt like a failure because I didn’t feel like I had any.
It turned out, of course, that I did. I just didn’t see that until a few years ago. I loved writing and learning since I could first hold a pencil and a book. And, through jobs in pharmacy, pharmaceuticals, and fitness, I discovered that I loved learning about health and wellness and explaining them to others.
I was making one puzzle piece at a time, without seeing the box of what the finished picture was going to be.
I think I would have benefited if somebody had told me that it was okay to feel lost.That you aren’t a failure if you don’t see your passion. That the little impulses I was following were valuable. That it was okay if they didn’t add up yet. That they were enough.
It can always be hard to be patient, but especially so when you don’t even realize that that’s what’s needed. So yes, trust that your passions are guiding you. But even if you’re not sure you have any, know that you’re still on your way to something.