ATTAINMENT IN 5, NOT SO EASY, STEPS
Today, I watched a video presentation from a self-proclaimed subject matter expert who encouraged his audience to focus on what they are good at during the week and pursue their passion, a silly quest, on the weekends.
He closed it up with a big end of speech laugh telling the crowd to forget about rap because they would never be Jay Z.
I disliked his commentary so much that I decided to write about it, one of the things I am passionate about and do best.
Here is my advice on attainment through passion.
1. Know Your Passion.
Passion, much like intuition, is a gift we are given at birth. We do not necessarily know where it comes from or why we feel it, simply that we do. It is a part of us, inseparable from who we are.
I encourage people to think back as far as they can and remember what they wanted to do when they were children.
I wanted to be a writer, an archeologist, and a pediatrician.
Today, I am a published author, an intense researcher, digging for the truth and sharing it with the world a la my screenplay Chicago 1919, and a social entrepreneur, intent on saving children’s lives and changing the world for the better.
Does your life’s work align with your childhood passions?
If not, are you happy with what you are doing and how you are living?
2. Don’t Believe the Hype
Naysayers will always tell you what you cannot do.
Parents and caretakers, instilled with worldly fears, will advise the safe route, the less risky path to riches. They will likely say, go to law school or medical school or perhaps, get a job with benefits. Choose stability over uncertainty and find what you love later, on the weekends as it were.
I acknowledge my own sense of privilege in these statements as I identify the practices of law and medicine as regular jobs. The caveat is that I am also profoundly aware that the skills necessary to pursue those careers are prevalent in communities where access to them is limited.
I worked on Wall Street for several years, a career I was particularly good at, but not passionate about. I often share that experience with young people who do not recognize the skills I see in them as valuable.
Institutionally, those with less economic power have fewer choices in terms of their self-security. Yet, the expertise they have honed for survival is the same skill set necessary to achieve great success in the upper echelons of society.
The proficiencies for being successful on Wall Street are the same as those necessary to survive and thrive on The Street: quick thinking, risk assessment, communication, market expertise and commerce exchange.
Jay Z, through his music and his lifestyle, shows people what they can do and be. He took the skills of the streets and his passion for music and turned it into one of the most successful entertainment enterprises that exists today.
Do you believe your passion is a worthwhile pursuit?
Do you believe your passion can result in luxurious living?
3. But, Math…
According to the speaker on the video, no one grows up wanting to be a mathematician. Like many, he believes that career choices are merely a mechanism for the only true passion, money.
I never liked math. I know people who absolutely adore it and are therefore incredible at it and financially successful as a result. I keep them by my side.
If you love math, teach it, be an accountant, work in private equity, start a hedge fund. Live the math dream.
Money will come. It coincides with expertise and commitment.
Following your passion or chasing your dream is the process.
Achievement is the conversion of your passion to the attainment of the same.
Is your passion valuable?
What do you believe you can achieve through and with it?
4. No, It’s Not Easy
I have been successful in many areas, careers that are considered difficult that were, for me, easy. The learning part was fun. Once I had mastered the field, it became boring. There was nothing underneath it, no great passion or outcome to keep me interested and excited.
Pursuing your passion as a lifestyle is not easy. Anyone who says otherwise is a lying to you.
Doing anything for money is easy.
Doing what you love and getting paid is hard…at first.
People will think you are crazy and/or stupid.
You will experience the lowest of lows and the highest of highs.
Family members will kick you to the curb believing you have discarded or disavowed the rules of life they entrusted you with.
You will make friends and you will lose them.
In the end, when you have reached levels of attainment that inspired you, recognizing that there is no finish line, you will be rich in peace and happiness.
You will also, very likely, be financially secure, perhaps wealthy.
Making money through achieving your dreams is not a new phenomenon. The richest people in the world are those who made big bets on themselves.
Billionaires are not employees. They create opportunities for others through inspiration, vision, and planning.
Do you love what you do?
Does how you make money matter?
5. Be Grateful
Lastly, though not the least important, be grateful for who you are, where you come from, the lessons you have learned and where you are right now, all of which are part of the amazing process that has made you who you are and your passions viable.
Anyone who has experienced great success through their life passion will tell you that it is not easy, but it is sublime.
Say thank you for the gifts you have been given. Let it be your mantra and watch as more for you to be thankful for appears in your life.
Dedicate yourself to doing what you do best, that thing that no one else possesses that is your legacy.
You may not see the change you have inspired in your lifetime, but history will show that you made a difference.
Never give up on you.