When I stepped onto this grassy plain, I had no idea how many bones were beneath my feet. My affection for the written word via essay had earned me a coveted educator’s scholarship to a week-long sabbatical in Colonial Williamsburg, Virginia. The significance of our destination was unbeknownst to me, initially; but, as our guide enumerated its relevance, I learned we were standing where soldiers had run valiantly to their end, in hopes of advancing what they felt most strongly about. Interestingly, they hadn’t enjoyed the best circumstances prior to their commitment. Nevertheless, the imperfections surrounding their ideals didn’t deter the depth of their desire to contend for their passions. They had a deep seeded belief that what they valued the most was worth everything they had to offer, at any cost.
Earlier this week, I had a conversation with an old friend who mentioned she’d found herself late to work more and more often. I assumed it was fatigue or perhaps just feeling overworked and overwhelmed. Later, I discovered it was simply because she was loathing the thought of her arrival. Still, she feels compelled – or perhaps coerced and a bit trapped – into enduring the drudgery daily, with increasing dissatisfaction and a growing level of contempt. Within the last year, it’s really affected her health – scary. I couldn’t help but wonder what does she really love? What could she throw herself into that would align so seamlessly with her personal aspirations that it would erase the helplessness and hopelessness that’s robbing her of fulfillment?
I speak not critically, but from experience. I’ve felt that suffocating feeling in the workplace before – more than once actually. I knew that I owed it to myself – and to my employer – to find a place where I would be of maximum benefit to myself (personal and professional growth) and to the patron (clients). As I dig deeper into my own passions, I find myself feeling stronger about those convictions. I’m happiest when I’m doing what I love. Inspiration abounds. Creativity culminates, and time flies by instead of eking along. I’m willing to make sacrifices to learn more, become better, share more often, delve farther, and broaden my acumen because what I once thought of as a hobby, I now perceive as a career.
I am forever convinced that every person has something unique about them; some reservoir of talent – whether developed or unknown – that would elicit the wonderment of many around them. I’d dare say that the average person rarely recognizes the breadth of their potential, and their million dollar ideas are born and die without ever coming to fruition. Nevertheless, for those who are willing to dig beneath the surface, to seriously contemplate their own ingenuity, there exists an opportunity to cross the line of scrimmage into a very different territory. Do you know what you have an uncanny knack for? What are you doing with it? What are you willing to do? How far are you willing to pursue your passion? Oh the possibilities…