If you’ve ever wondered anything about life passions (what they are, why they’re important…if YOU have one and what in the world is it?) then you need to read this interview and check out Life Passion Coach Barrie Davenport. And if luck is on your side, you may find yourself with a copy of her extraodinary workbook, The 52-Week Life Passion Project, in your hot little hands! I have read this book cover to cover and it is genius! I also recommend signing up for Barrie’s newsletters on her website if you would like regular doses of inspiration to get you moving toward a more passionate life.
The link to the contest is at the bottom of the post – thank you to the Vancouver Top Mom Bloggers who are helping me spread the word about this giveaway!
Who has/have been your creative inspiration(s)?
This is a great question because for most of my adult life I didn’t think I was creative. The year I turned 40, I was really busy raising my kids and had very little time to do anything creative, but I was craving something creative in my life. I picked up the book, The Artist’s Way, by Julia Cameron. In the book, she suggests picking one creative hands-on thing that you can do instead of reading or watching TV – just for fun, with no self-judgment or expectations. I decided to try drawing since it was something I could start and stop easily, given the many interruptions I had with my young children. I never had any artistic ability previously, but I just decided to try to reproduce the lines and shades I saw in a photograph of one of my kids. After working on the drawing for a few days, I realized I did have artistic ability! I was able to draw pencil portraits after a few weeks of working at it. This event and the book were huge motivations for me, making me realize we all have untapped wells of creativity inside of us.
When I started my blog and online work, I was so inspired by other writers and online experts I encountered, like Leo Babauta of Zen Habits, Chris Guillebeau of The Art of Non-Conformity, and Lori Deschene of Tiny Buddha. I was really inspired by the writing of Katie Tallo who has the site Momentum Gathering and has just finished her first novel. There are so many amazing people online doing great things – too many to name here. I’ve also gotten a lot of inspiration from Sir Ken Robinson, the author, speaker, and international advisor on education in the arts to government, non-profits, education, and arts bodies. I’ve watch his TED talks on creativity and read his wonderful book, The Element, which was hugely inspirational.
Can you give us examples of how you think following one’s passions can positively impact one’s life?
Your passion is integral to who you are as a person, your deepest desires for expression of your own creativity and sense of purpose. Most of us were able to express this freely as children through exploration and play. There were no judgments or self-imposed limits on what we thought we could do. We just followed where our interests and joy took us. But over time, through the input and feedback from parents, teachers, peers, etc., we lose our connection with passion in order to be accepted and to conform. If you can remember what it felt like to be a kid on a great day, to wake up and know something fun and amazing was waiting for you, then you have an inkling of what it feels like to live with a passion.
Another analogy is the feeling of being in love. When you are with your beloved, everything about life seems easier, more joyful, and brighter. Even your problems don’t seem so bad because you are so happily in love. Imagine feeling that way about life in general. When you have a passion, something you feel deeply engaged in and excited about, it will infuse your entire life with those joyful and purposeful feelings. Of course, we do have adult responsibilities and life difficulties. Those will always be there, but they are tempered by your enthusiasm for your passion. That’s the power passion has in elevating the quality of your life.
What do you say to people who tell you, “I have no time/money to follow my passions”?
You have to make the time and find the money. Making the time is the first most important action in finding your passion. Passion doesn’t just land in your lap or appear magically. It requires time and energy to figure it out. It requires self-work of figuring out more about your personality, your intelligence and creativity, your aptitudes and skills, your likes and dislikes. It also requires the inner work of dealing with emotional and mental roadblocks like fear, self-doubt, and limiting beliefs. And then it requires the actual work of trial and error, research, experimentation, and getting your hands dirty by testing out your passion to see how it feels. So you must carve out a few hours a week to do this all-important work. Before you worry about how much money you will need, first find what you love. When you find something that makes you come alive, it’s amazing how doors open and opportunities appear. You may need to save money or scale back in order to do some things –like get more education or have a savings account ready in case you have a gap time without a job. But just about every problem is figure-out-able when you are motivated by your passion.
What has been your greatest obstacle on your passion path and how did you overcome it?
There were two big ones. The first was thinking I was too old to start over with a career. I’d been a public relations professional for over 20 years, and that was all I knew how to do. So going back to school and getting a coaching certification was daunting. I didn’t know if I could build a business or learn what I needed to learn. But the work was so engaging that I just kept moving forward. Once I started my online work, I had a huge learning curve related to computer technology. I really only knew how to create word documents and search the internet! But again, I was so motivated, I figured out what I needed to learn to build they business and found the right people to help me when I was stumped.
What is the purpose behind your book and who would benefit from it?
The purpose of The 52-Week Life Passion Project is to help people uncover and live their passions. I’ve taken everything I’ve learned as a public relations professional supporting and promoting the passions of other people, as well as what I’ve learned through my own personal life passion search, and what I’ve worked on with my clients as a coach, to create a formula that leads readers by the hand through every step of the process. I’ve broken down the steps into 52 weekly lessons and actions so it’s easy to manage and gives people the opportunity to digest the material and take the actions. The lessons and actions are designed to be followed sequentially so that you are working steadily toward uncovering your life passion and creating a realistic plan to live it in a way that works best for you and your life. It leads them on a journey of deeper self-awareness to gain more clarity on who they are, what they want in life, and how they should go about getting it.
Click HERE to go to the contest!!
Barrie Davenport is a life passion coach, author, and founder of BarrieDavenport.com, a site devoted to helping people uncover and live their life passions. You can download her free guide, The Passion Myths: 6 Lies Keeping You From Uncovering Your Life Passion.