“A person can succeed at almost anything for which they have unlimited enthusiasm.” – Charles M. Schwab
Day 56 of #LAST70DAYSOF2013 is on following your passion. I believe strongly in with a well inspired and directed passion can do in the life of anyone who has such. I feel that many young people out there are hardly passionate about anything in life and that is one of the reasons we have high level of mediocrity among the larger population of young people. I believe that if one is passionate enough about a thing, the person will go out of his or her way to make it happen.
And so, I want to share a personal story with you. I believe it will help to convey the message of following your passion, so it will lead you home, to a place where every day of your life is clothed with fulfilment. Before I graduated my first degree from the University, I knew I wanted to spend my entire life doing two things: first teach, and secondly work with young people. After my graduation and participation in the compulsory National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) programme of the Federal Government of Nigeria I returned home. I knew I needed to do something that will take me closer to the two things I wanted to spend my life doing. So I enrolled for a Masters degree programme since I felt that would give me a competitive advantage in my desire to join a higher institution as a teacher. And then, I started sharing my vision to work with young people with people I considered to be like-minded with me. I didn’t have much money because the little I saved during the NYSC programme was what I plunged into both projects I just mentioned. It was not an easy time for me. But one thing kept me going. I was within sight with my passion. I knew it will lead me home someday if I do not lose sight of it.
At this time, several friends I graduated with were fortunate enough to get jobs with banking firms, oil producing and servicing companies, others with government institutions, and many with multinational corporations. Time was passing and my Masters programme was not going as I expected. And my family was looking up to me. That was when my challenge started. Dad thought I should look for a job in the bank or even join one of the military forces. Somehow, we were not agreeing because he wanted me to follow a passion which was not for me. Not because there was anything wrong with those jobs. But because I knew none of them was in line with my passion, I was imagining the frustrations I will experience if I ever followed those paths. At a point, the work with youths was becoming so demanding because the number was growing and several youths were beginning to have a high expectation from us. We needed more hands but we didn’t have. We needed more money but there was none. If felt like, it was time to just give up and fall for whatever is presented before you. In the midst of it all, my passion kept me strong.
It all became more difficult when I began to hear about those friends dedicating their cars and some of course their babies, while others were going on vacation abroad. I began to reconsider if I had made the right decision about what I wanted to do with my life. But you know one thing about following your passion, it cannot be changed by external influences like when you see people seemingly getting ahead of you in life and is like you are just stagnant. The truth be told, you are not stagnant. You are building up yourself for what lies ahead of your life and destiny. At the long run, you will discover that what matters most is not how far you run in life but how well you run.
To cut long story short, in few years time, I discovered how much I have invested into my life in preparation for what I wanted to spend the rest of my life doing. I had finished my Masters, attended some local and international conferences, developed teaching, research, and report writing skills, built up my personality, worked on my people relationship skills and some other stuffs. I then suddenly realised that I was ready. At this time, I had reach the point where higher institutions where after me and I had to make my choice. At the moment, working with young people is what I now do almost every day as we now have a team that is fully independent and can work with or without my presence. When I look back to all the years I had to wait, I have no regret because I feel at home with the things I spend my life doing daily. My passion has led me home.
……let me share these truths about passion with you:
Passion is the first step to achievement: Your desire determines your destiny. Anyone who lives beyond an ordinary life had a great desire. It is true in any field. Weak desire brings weak result. Passion increases your will-power: There is no substitute for passion. It is fuel for the will. If you want anything badly enough, you can find the will-power to achieve it.
Passion changes you: If you follow your passion other than others perception, you can’t help but become more dedicated and productive person. And that increases your ability to impact others. In the end, your passion will have more influence than your personality.
Passion makes the impossible possible: Human beings are created by God in such a way that when anything fires the soul, impossibility vanish. A fire in the heart lights everything in your life. A person with great passion and few skills will outperform a person with great skills but no passion.
The truth is that passion is power. You can never have significant success with anything until it becomes your passion. You will be remembered for those things that consumed your time, thoughts, energy that led to significant contribution to the benefit of humanity. In 2014, you must pursue your dream passionately or else, no one will do so for you.
Prayer: May your 2014 be filled with a God-given passion. May every coldness in your heart against your purpose receive a fire from God to launch you into a glorious year.