While at Secret Entourage we are all about the actionable and usable posts like our “How to Make a Million” post last month, we sometimes wander in the abstract and decide to talk about passion and purpose. For those of you that have read Third Circle Theory and understand the power that your observations today have on your future tomorrow, then perhaps this post might sound a bit like something you’ve heard before.
As a serial entrepreneur, business owner, and finance expert with a passion for cars, I often get approached quite a bit by younger inspired individuals with questions on how to be successful, but every now and then comes another question that often doesn’t get a proper response. The question I am referring to is “What do I do if I don’t know what I am good at?” While many of us are well on our journey to succeeding and while many others perhaps are making enough money that our passion is not something we worry about, there are others out there who simply have no clue what to do. There is simply too much information and too many different venues one can learn of to know which one to take, especially for those younger people out there following us. If it feels any better, then know that you certainly are not alone and that you might already possess the answers you seek but simply don’t know where to look.
If our observations are the key to unlocking our very own potential as broken down step-by-step in the Third Circle Theory, then some of them must certainly hold much more weight than others. If we understand that true passion is born at the tip of the 3rd circle, then how can people be passionate about what they do in the 1st and 2nd stages of life, since we all ultimately go through the same hoops to get to our goals?
Let’s first define what passion is. It is certainly is an emotionless state, contrary to what many believe. Passion is not an emotion, but rather our reaction to our belief system. Our belief system which is impacted for years by our surroundings, parents, teachers and many more people, is ultimately the foundation of our life. Understanding how to tweak it is ultimately the core of how we graduate through different phases of our life until we eventually reach self actualization. Self actualization in itself is nothing more than a by-product of our belief system since we ultimately believe to have found our purpose, there is no validation of such finding but rather our ability backed by our belief.
Our passion is ultimately created when we not only become particularly skilled, but also believe in our ability to innovate. When belief and skill-set become aligned, the opportunity of innovation manifests itself and passion is born as a result.
I am going to stop here for just a minute for those of you that are having a hard time following so far… please go back and re-read the last two paragraphs and understand them well before moving on. The rest of us will wait.
Passion is very much needed for any innovation to become a reality, and passion is something that more of the world needs. I particularly hate when I encounter people in my daily routines at supermarkets, restaurants, and other various places who seem to have no life left in them, who have given up on attempting to find their passion, or have sold out for a paycheck instead but hardly find it rewarding. If everyone was passionate about what they did, then the world would be a much better place and it would show through not only our interactions with each other, but also by the level of efficiency in the business world regardless of which company you deal with.
Based on what I wrote in the Third Circle Theory and the formula above of how passion is created between belief aligning itself with skill-set, then comes the next best question that our younger audience might be still asking itself:
Where do I start, and what if I never find it?
This question holds a two-part answer that can hopefully help anyone discover more about themselves.
1. Master your belief system: Understanding yourself is key to changing, and key to creating the exact person you want to see in the mirror, rather than the person the environment has created thus far. Belief is the second category within the First Circle. Belief is the acceptance of what you see. It’s the simplest yet most complex phenomenon of the entire theory and ultimately sums everything up as “What do you believe?” What you believe defines what you see as possible, and therefore, becomes your guideline to living life. Belief can be in the sense of what you perceive as right versus wrong or something along the lines of your definition of success. Belief shouldn’t be confused with confidence, which is belief in your own ability. Belief is defining what you believe to be possible. Yes, it seems similar to confidence, but the true meanings are still very far apart.
Henry Ford said it best when he said: “Whether you believe you can or can’t, you’re right.”
Awareness and understanding of your environment leads to your acceptance of it. Think about this in a simpler state — for example, your belief in getting promoted at work. Some people don’t believe a promotion is possible, so they never make an effort toward achieving it. It becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. Lack of belief crushes the chance to achieve. Others believe in the possibility. They don’t just act, but rather seek information as to how to accomplish the task. Then, with a plan in mind, they follow through with the actions. It all starts with the belief itself that drives the behavior of investigation.
Your acceptance of what is possible is based on your past observations of your environment. This belief drives you to act. Your life is only defined by the actions you take, which are largely the result of your belief. This is why some of you go for very large goals, while others go for smaller ones. Those of you who actively chase those large goals — often called impossible or unrealistic by others — are ready to undertake the impossible, because you have most likely witnessed some amazing things in your past. These observations have led you to believe you, too, can make the impact you envision and wish for.
You define success based on what you believe to be possible. This is why hearing of others who started with very little, yet accomplished a lot reinforces your belief of such a possibility. You might think that you are simply relating to that person, but the truth is, that gut feeling you acquire, the energy that you feel when you read or see a story about such an achiever is your mind’s way of redefining its possibilities.
Just like everything else in all three circles, belief is based on what you have witnessed in your environment, and that includes those around you. This is why surrounding yourself with successful people helps you become successful. And not because they will give you money or help you achieve, but rather their constant “can do” attitude and their reach being so large. It makes you believe that you, too, can belong to that class and achieve big goals. When you believe, you seek information, when you gain information, you act. All of these observations and information lead you to design this very nice roadmap for success and often as a result makes you aim for bigger goals than you thought were possible.
Since belief originates from the vision of your own life you have, coupled with your understanding of the information you see, then what keeps you from seeking information regarding things you don’t see yet? Not believing in one religion doesn’t mean you shouldn’t make the effort to learn about its history, rules, and customs. The more you know, the more you can relate to others of that background or culture and understand their viewpoint of life. If you understand other people, and they don’t understand you, it gives you a unique perspective to leverage or tweak the situations you are in to your liking.
2. Become great in everything you do: Skill-set which we discussed earlier must align with belief and it is true that very often we are thrown into the first few jobs we have or first career we undertake but that doesn’t mean we can’t get as much as we can from it, even if we don’t believe it to be aligned with where we wish our path to take us.
Working as a telemarketer for a remodeling company certainly is not anyone’s perfect job or perhaps perfect career, but it certainly is the reason I became who I am today. If I hadn’t learned early on how to get rid of the fear of rejection through improving my phone selling abilities, my confidence and tolerance for rejection would have never been elevated to the level it is today and would have never allowed me to overcome all the challenges I have in my life.
You may not always love the function you hold today or the job you have, but perhaps you are looking at it the wrong way. Look at every job, career, or venture as an opportunity to learn and be exposed to newer elements in your environment that you previously were not exposed to and to master the skillsets you use daily in your role. Once mastered, you will not only be faced with additional challenges as you will move up the ladder but also continuously be exposed to more elements around you in your newer role. Being great at what you do almost has a fail safe in it, because regardless of when you actually find your passion or it becomes apparent to you, you are still progressing forward and as a result making it even more likely that you will find a skill that you believe will align with everything else you want to do rather than what you have to do. By moving up the corporate ladder or improving your salary, you are being exposed to various levels of leadership, business or management and as a result may awaken a skill you didn’t know existed within yourself.
When I started my banking career, I hated the role itself as I felt that sales and management were quite boring and certainly very far from where I wanted to end up in the long run but since I conditioned myself to simply excel as I teach others to do in the Third Circle Theory, it was easy for me to move up the ladder and be exposed to a skill that would change my life forever: teaching. It wasn’t until I was in charge of multiple leaders, managers, and business units that I understood the true essence of leadership as I described in Check Mate: 16 Rules of Leadership. As a result I excelled at what I did only to find myself mastering many more aspects of finance that I never even looked at before. The fail safe was that I was progressing even though it may have seemed blind at times. I eventually did graduate to entrepreneurship based on my observations and belief re-enforced as I referred to in Is It 5 Yet – From Worker to Owner.
If you do find yourself at a loss as you slave away each day participating in a rat race that you desperately want to get out of but can’t, perhaps you should rethink the reasoning of how you ended up in the rat race to begin with and understand that your ability to simply be great at what you do is part of the solution and the bridge to finding your passion.