Haven’t found your purpose in life yet? Read about how passion projects will help you find the things that will make you excited to get out of bed in the morning for the rest of your life.
Okay Maud, passion projects. Sounds cool. There’s a certain ring to it, sure, but what exactly is a passion project? Well, let me tell you, fine reader. Passion projects are projects about one subject or idea that make you feel excited and determined. It’s the things you’ve always wanted to try or learn more about, but haven’t made the time for yet. I’m telling you to make time for it, not sometime in the vague future, but right now
Haven’t found your passion yet?
I am assuming that if you are reading this right now you either are my friends and family (hi, thanks for reading yet another one of my blogs, you rock… love you!) OR you haven’t found your purpose in life yet.
Well, there’s absolutely no shame in that. I was where you are only a few years ago. I was severely depressed actually and had no hope of ever finding anything that would make me want to jump out of bed in the morning. However, finding my purpose helped me turn it all around.
So, if you are feeling down about not having found your passions yet, don’t! The best is truly yet to come. The journey ahead is beautiful, bright and really exciting. I promise.
Getting started with passion projects will be fun and exciting, but will also be time consuming. It will take a lot of effort and might even change you as a person. Have you ever heard of a story where the protagonist did not change along their path to greatness?
This change is a great thing, because you will only change if it’s something you want to change for. Nobody is telling you to do anything you don’t want to do. You will change because you really want something and you will redesign your life to fit your (new) goals and dreams.
Every passion project will at the very least make you wiser. And it will ALWAYS take you one step further towards finding your life purpose, even if that specific passion project isn’t it.
I used to see my passion projects as a burden. They come to me naturally. I just can’t keep my focus on the same thing for very long. I’ve had these projects ever since I was a kid and it never went away. I would spend a lot of money to make sure that if I failed at something, it wouldn’t be due to a lack of the right resources. This resulted in a very cluttered home and a lot of stuff I don’t use anymore and probably don’t even know I have.
Another small inconvenience was that I wouldn’t be able to talk about anything else than my project, because it was all my life revolved around at the moment. As it turns out, people aren’t always super interested in everything new you do and get a little sick of having to hear you talk all about it.
However, the best friends in life are the ones that really want you to succeed in life and want you to be extremely happy with what you choose to do. Those are also the ones that will be genuinely interested in your new project and will kindly tell you to shut up when they get tired of your endless stories about your brand new passion. 😉
Discover new things
Recently, I’ve come to see passion projects as a great way to discover new things in life. You will be able to completely immerse yourself in one subject and find out quickly if it is for you. Maybe it seemed really exciting in the beginning, but turned out to not be your thing. No worries, you can continue onto the next subject until you find that something you want to keep doing.
Even if it takes a lot of time and sometimes money, I am incredibly glad that I tried all these things. My projects brought me so much in life. I wouldn’t give them up for the world.
In short, trying new things is usually the way to finding your life purpose. You could just accidentally ‘bump’ into your passion while trying something new. That’s what makes passion projects so awesome! Before you know it, you’ve found something that will make you incredibly happy for the rest of your life.
No strings attached
Another fun thing about passion projects, there’s absolutely no long term commitment. You’re just here to test the waters. It’s totally fine if you want to quit and move on to the next thing. No stress.
Besides, that’s the very purpose of passion projects. You’re on your way to discover what you want to do in life. So, if something doesn’t make you really happy, it’s not what you should be doing. Simple as that.
Now, how do you start a passion project? To be honest, this question was very hard for me to answer at first. As I said, they usually come to me naturally. Something piques my interest and I get really motivated to find out all about that subject. I would read books on the matter, watch videos or vlogs, get myself all the necessary equipment (outfits, props, books, everything…) and give the project my undivided attention.
Anywho, if you aren’t necessarily a person who gets really excited about things and goes all-in, there’s still a way to have passion projects. It just takes a little more effort and preparation. It will still very much be worth your while.
The three ways to finding your life purpose
After some introspection, I’ve come up with three ways to finding your life purpose. You can start by trying one or just dive in and get started with all of them today.
When you feel like you have an idea of what your passion might be, but just need a little ‘nudge’ to get started, I recommend method one or two.
If you have no clue AT ALL, definitely start with three.
Here we go:
Method One: Figuring out your life goals
One way to find your life purpose is by thinking about your life goals. What are the things you want most in the world? Life goals are the most important goals you have in life. They are long term and should feel like great accomplishments when you achieve them. Those goals are the things you’ll look back on later in life and they will give you a feeling of happiness and gratitude.
For me, those goals are having my own (successful) business, marrying the love of my life, starting a family, publishing a book, becoming a home owner, owning a second (small) house in the sun somewhere (because I can’t stand the Dutch winters) and to be financially secure enough to never ever worry about money again.
Setting life goals will help you find your life purpose because they give you direction.
Asking the right questions
Step one is figuring out your life goals. They are a huge indicator of what is really important to you in life. It might be hard to think of things this big at first, but just take your time. There is no rush. Rome wasn’t built in a day either.
When you have a few goals, start considering how you could achieve them by first thinking smaller. For instance, if you’d like to run your own business, what are the first things that come to mind? What are the things about having your own business that appeal to you? Is it the freedom of deciding when you want to work? Is it being responsible for your own income that makes you work really hard?
Ask yourself all these questions and figure out the “why” behind your goals.
The why of your goals is incredibly important, because when you figure out why you want something, you can start setting smaller goals to help you reach your larger goals. These subgoals are the steps you need to take on the ladder to your personal success.
If you need a little help setting your goals, I have a free Goal Setting Workbook to walk you through all of the steps for you! To get access to it, subscribe to my mailing list:
Method Two: Let’s give it 30 days
Another great way to start your search for purpose is by taking on 30 day challenges. This might actually be my favorite method because it fits the theme of passion projects the best; by using simple trial and error.
These challenges take 30 days because it will take that many days for something to become a habit. It’s also a generally good period of time to find out if something is possibly your lifelong passion. 30 Days should give you a good sense of whether or not you like something and will be able to stick with it. Just find yourself a topic, an idea or a hobby that you want to learn more about and set a goal of trying it for a certain amount of time per day for 30 days.
Something has potential if during this month it will hardly ever feel like a chore. It should bring you joy, make you feel like you lost track of time and more importantly, excited that you get to do it again tomorrow.
Uncertain where to begin? I have a HUGE list of 30 day challenges for you to get started with!
Method Three: Questions to ask yourself & creating your mission
This exercise will give you a great push in the right direction to find your life purpose. Figuring out your mission in life, will give you a head start to finding out HOW you want to accomplish it.
I’m a girl on a mission
For example, my mission statement is; I want to help people find their passions so they can lead a happy and fulfilled life.
This is important to me because I know that when I help others feel fulfilled, I will feel the same way.
After creating my mission statement, I started thinking about all the ways I could possibly do that. I knew that I loved writing and that I was kind of good at it too. I knew that getting in touch with people online was something that made me happy. And most of all, I knew that I wanted to help as many people as I possibly could. My life has gotten so much better with passion, that I want everybody to feel it. After all, happiness is multiplied when shared.
Blogging about it turned out to be the best way for me to work towards my mission. I get to write about topics that will (hopefully) allow me to connect with people online and provide help for many of them. Blogging is now one of my biggest passions, so this method definitely worked for me!
Exercise: questions to yourself
Start this exercise by answering some questions. Take out a piece of paper (or open a Word document) and write your answers down. You will need the answers later.
- What are your strengths?
- What makes you feel joyful?
- What always cheers you up?
- What makes you feel good about yourself?
- Why do you think people like to be around you (feel free to ask them if you have a hard time answering this one)
- What do people often ask you for help with?
- Who are important to you? (Yourself? Family? Friends? Animals? All of humankind?)
- What are your core values? (Which 3-5 things do you value most in life?)
- Do you have any role models? Why do you admire them?
- What’s a cause you truly, deeply believe in?
Exercise: your mission
A mission consists of three very important elements:
- What do I want to do?
- Who do I want to help? (This can be yourself)
- What will be the result/value I create?
So, take another look at your answers to the ten questions you just asked yourself. What are the most important topics? Are there things you keep coming back to? Just look at what you’ve written down and try to answer the three questions above.
Now turn those three answers into your statement:
I want to help … (someone/something) by … (doing this) to … (make this happen)
Or any other way you’d like to write it down of course, this is just an example. Make it as personal as possible. It’s your mission after all.I just created my mission statement and I'm really excited to get started! Figure yours out too on www.mypassionprojects.com Click To Tweet
Now think of all the ways you can possibly achieve this goal. Consult your answers once again to find out what you’re good at, who can help you and what you like to do. Those are all important elements in figuring out how you want to accomplish your mission.
Now get started!
These were my three methods for finding your life purpose. I hope you found one that will work for you! I will keep trying to find more ways and when I do, I will definitely share them with you in another blogpost.
By that time, I hope you won’t need them because you have already found your purpose and are completely happy with your life! Even if that’s the case, I would love for you to stick around and check out all of the other cool stuff I’ll be sharing here.
Some good advice for the road
- Celebrate every milestone along the way. Every subgoal you cross off your list is a reason to celebrate and treat yourself. This way you’ll keep yourself motivated to keep going.
- When one method isn’t working for you: don’t give up! Just try one of the others. 🙂
- Find a buddy or even a tribe (which is basically a group of cool people). Usually, the feeling of “belonging” will tell you that there’s something about that person or group that you would like to have too. Look for that thing and you will learn a lot about yourself.
- Don’t be fooled by the word purpose being singular. There is most likely not just one passion or one purpose for you. There’s often many paths in life that will bring you happiness and joy.
- Make sure you enjoy yourself while trying to find your purpose. Looking for passion should be fun, not frustrating.
Good luck, my young Padawan
I hope this article helped with sending you on your way to start your very first (or next) passion project. I hope you have a great time during your search for purpose and passion!
If you have any questions or things you would like to share, please feel free to contact me. I will try to answer all your emails as soon as possible.
With much love (and may the Force be with you),