In today’s day and age, we are inundated with finding your passion and purpose. Apparently, everyone from the villages to the bustling metropolis is looking for purpose and finding their why. While this is a good thing and I highly encourage everyone to discover their why and purpose, I offer a path less traveled.
Sometimes the imaginary pressure of knowing your purpose and finding your why can be so overwhelming that we feel like failures. Case in point, my seven-year-old was watching Jay Shetty give a talk on Ikigai. The art of finding your passion that is fulfilling, is of service to the world, and you can be paid to do it. She made her tiny little columns and filled them out. Her talents, reading and writing, and what she loved to do, eating ice cream and cuddling mum, but she got stumped on finding which ones would serve the world and worse which one would financially sustain her. She asked if being a Mayor would be a good option, I told her yes it would do very well.
She beamed but I did not let her know that none of her loves qualified her to become a Mayor. Which brought me to the realization that many people might be on a road where their talents and passion, say playing online games, in our current framework that we live in, would not provide them an Ikigai.
For them I offer an alternative to finding their purpose, find out what you don’t want to do. Sometimes being clear on what you don’t want can point you straight in the direction of where you need to go. I know for a fact that there are many people who are confused about what they want but crystal clear about what they don’t want.
I recommend this method purely because hate is far more intense than like. While it is easy to like a lot of things and be confused about what you could develop into a passion, you are crystal clear on what you hate. Using the process of elimination you could find a passion that avoided all the pitfalls of the things you hate, say a 9 to 5 job, and would have a far higher chance of success.
If nothing else it would offer a temporary bridge to get you to a place and position where you would be on a path where all the guaranteed mistakes were absent. Its easier to choose a flavor of ice cream once you have eliminated the ones you don’t want. Sometimes too many options is as bad as not having any.
So you’ve heard people say, ‘make a list of all that you want to do’, I say make a list of all the things you don’t want and then find what remains. Choose the one that you feel is the best among that.