Since I started reading Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear by Elizabeth Gilbert I can’t stop thinking about the words curiosity, passion and purpose.
Actually, I have been thinking about the last two big words since I graduated two years ago with a Journalism degree I didn’t want to pursue as a career. To be honest, I’m not even sure if I want to pursue a career if that means doing the same thing for the rest of my life.
I’ve came across so many articles telling me how finding my passion would lead me to my purpose. Purpose being that one thing that would ignite my soul, give a meaning to my existence and guide me through life.
But what if I just don’t know what that thing is?
What if I’m passionate about multiple things and can’t pick just one?
Is there something wrong with me?
Of course not.
But it was only until a few weeks ago that I started to accept that it really isn’t a bad thing.
Why It’s Okay Not To Know Your Purpose
It was all because of Elizabeth Gilbert, someone I deeply admire. But let’s start from the beginning.
I recently discovered The Lively Show Podcast by Jess Lively – another person I’ve been obsessed with! – and listened to the episode where she interviewed Elizabeth Gilbert on curiosity, epic self-compassion, creativity and the fetishization of passion.
It is brilliant.
I am also reading Big Magic and Elizabeth talks about these topics on the book which then led me to discover her speech on Super Soul Sessions.
Again, brilliant. And I totally recommend you to watch it wether you know what your passion is or not.
She starts by saying how she knew what her passion was since she was 5 years old. Elizabeth knew she was going to be a writer and did everything to be one. After the big success of Eat Pray Love, she started being invited to give speeches across the world.
Since passion was something so clear and certain for her, that was what she preached: Chase your passion and find your purpose, that one thing that is going to be the guiding principle to organize your whole life around.
But there was one moment that questioned that certainty about passion and purpose.
After one of her speeches, someone wrote a letter to Elizabeth on Facebook telling how she had made her feel even more like a failure for not knowing what her passion was. That made the author question about what she had been preaching all those years and think about how many people in her life actually knew from an early age what they wanted to do. Apart from her, no one.
The jackhammers & the hummingbirds
And that’s how she came about the two types of passion-seekers: the chasers and the explorers. The jackhammers and the hummingbirds.
Like Elizabeth Gilbert, Jackhammers are the chasers who focus on one thing for the rest of their lives. On the contrary, hummingbirds fly from tree to tree, creating rich, complex lives for themselves.
How beautiful is that?
Personally, I don’t have one big passion, something I’m 100% sure I want to pursue for the rest of my life. There are so many things I want to explore, from being a wedding photographer to stationery shop owner to coach to travel blogger. I want to explore my possibilites and pursue everything that interests me.
Are you struggling with not knowing your purpose?
Release yourself from the pressure of having a purpose or passion and follow your curiosity. That’s Elizabeth Gilbert’s advice.Follow your curiosity. Your curiosity just might lead you to your passion. Elizabeth Gilbert Click To Tweet
It’s already amazing that you’re trying to figure out what your purpose is. It means your curious, that you want to live a more intentional life.
Ask yourself what interests you and pursue that. If you end up realizing that’s not what you want to do, move on to the next thing. It doesn’t mean you’re wasting time because you will take something from each thing you do that will contribute to your personal growth or be helpful when you’re pursuing your next interest.
Doesn’t it sound exciting to live a curiosity driven life?
It’s completely fine to not have your life figured out, I’m pretty sure most people don’t. Enjoy the present moment, get to know yourself and be curious to try new things that excite you. In the end, we are all trying to find our way.Live a curiosity driven life. Click To Tweet
What are your thoughts on passion and purpose?