If you want to live your life in a creative way, as an artist, you have to not look back too much. You have to be willing to take whatever you’ve done and whoever you were and throw them away. The more the outside world tries to reinforce an image of you, the harder it is to continue to be an artist, which is why a lot of times, artists have to say, “Bye. I have to go. I’m going crazy and I’m getting out of here.” And they go and hibernate somewhere. Maybe later they re-emerge a little differently.Steve Jobs, Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson
“Passion is not something you follow. It’s something that will follow you as you put in the hard work to become valuable to the world.”Cal Newport
Passion is something you discover after the work has been done. You can’t possibly know what you’re passionate about without experimenting first.
You may have an idea about what you like. That’s a good start. Now put it into practice and then ask yourself the tough questions:
- Are you naturally good at it? If so, are you likely to get bored?
- If you’re not a natural, is this something you can get good at with time and patience? Do you like it enough to persist?
The above questions are essential to discovering whether or not you’re actually enthusiastic about something.
“You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards.Steve Jobs
Passion emerges through a diversity of experiences that allow one to tie it all altogether. A beginner’s mind, an open mind — are essential ingredients to railing against monomaniac passions that keep you in one place.
If you have an idea, test it. Test it not just to see if it works but also to see if it excites you and if it’s something really worth pursuing.
I realized why I need to start a new company. Not for the money. Not because I’m ‘bored’. But because a company is a laboratory to try your ideas.Derek Sivers
Figuring out what you love to do takes a combination of gut and experimentation. Like a frog hopping between lilypads, it may take a few jumps before you discover which vocation makes you feel most alive.
“I’m a big believer in boredom. … All the [technology] stuff is wonderful, but having nothing to do can be wonderful, too.”Steve Jobs
Boredom adds to the mystery of life. When we sit alone with our thoughts, the world breaks open. Nature comes alive. Time slows down and insights emerge from dormancy.
The ransacking of human attention has been virtually unstoppable ever since the iPhone came out. Technology makes us hyper-attentive all the time, so much that we end up paying attention to nothing at all. Mobile screens drown out the dull, mysterious thoughts and replace them with bytes of cotton candy.
Don’t get it twisted: the mind is alive and well, especially when it has nothing to do.
art via davidmichaelchandler