In 2021 choose Passion

In my last week’s post I shared with you my 3 top tips to always choose Love no matter what, when and where. 

Did you love yourself first and foremost?

Were you open to love and to be loved?

Were you curious and try to see love as diverse?

In this week’s post I focus on the theme of Passion and on how Passion can contribute to our wellbeing and happiness and how we can introduce more Passion into our lives.

Is Love equal to Passion? Or separated from it?

I believe that Passion can be an expression or an extension of Love in the sense that through passion(s) you can express the things you truly love or are in love with. 

As I was telling you last week “Love doesn’t only come from people or ourselves but also from things and places, little quirks and routines”. Thus, we can say that Passion and Love go hand in hand, fuelling each other in a very close and intimate relationship.

Passion has been defined as “a strong liking or desire for or devotion to some activity, object, or concept” (Merriam-Webster Dictionary, 2021). From this definition it becomes clear that Passion is indeed fuel for living and consequently for wellbeing and happiness. Passion also seems to be connected with a sense of personal fulfilment and meaning in life. Considering that Passion is a key-ingredient for overall well-being…

…how can we then make our lives more passionate?

In 2011, the Psychologist Martin Seligman wrote a book where he emphasised the idea of pursuing a sense of well-being rather than happiness, contrary to the initial concept from Positive Psychology which was pursuing happiness and increasing life satisfaction. Seligman introduces the new concept of Flow and flourishing to achieve well-being, highlighting that Positive Psychology should be focused on measuring well-being rather than happiness. According to this author and another Psychologist called  Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi  Flow and being in the Flow is a much more nuanced state, a sweet spot in between the extremes of anxiety and boredom. 

I agree that being over-focused on the pursuit of happiness can create unnecessary anxiety at times, on the other hand would you agree that not focusing on pursuing a happy life and feeling defeated in a state of boredom may also create unnecessary anxiety and negative emotions? I would say yes to that too, but let’s leave this discussion open for another blog post. Despite this, life seems to always be about fine tuning and balancing the 2 plates of a scale. 

If Passion is defined as a strong liking, desire or devotion to an object, concept or activity Flow and being in the Flow can become one of the ways to generate and keep feeding our passion(s). Passion requires Flow as well as well-being and happiness. 

Introduce more passion into your life by flowing through (Seligman, 2011):

  • Positive Emotions: experiencing emotions such as gratitude, hope, and contentment;
  • Engagement: activities that fully absorb our attention, entering  into a state of flow;
  • Relationships: a sense of strong trust, connection, and support with others;
  • Meaning: an altruistic purpose in life that is bigger than the self;
  • Achievement: having ambition and goals and following through on them. 

When did you last experience positive emotions?

When did you last engage in activities that fully absorb your attention?

When did you last feel a strong sense of connection with others?

When did you experience a strong sense of personal fulfilment and meaning?

Share your passions and ambitions in the comment box below and try PERMA for a more passionate life and to feed your passion(s). 

References:

Merriam-Webster Dictionary (2021). ‘Passion’. [Online]. Available at: https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/passion. (Accessed at: 20th of August 2021).Seligman, M. (2011). ‘Flourish: a visionary new understanding of Happiness and Well-being’. Free Press: New York.

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