Pursuing your Passion

Pursuing your Passion

“Passion is Energy. Feel the power that comes from focusing on what excites you.” Oprah Winfrey

Do you remember Nike’s famous tagline, “just do it,” or L’Oréal: “Because You’re Worth It.” These two quotes embrace the attitude you will need on your journey to pursuing your passion.

Growing up, I knew that for me the two big things I always wanted to have in my life were travel and horses. My travel bug was ignited when I heard the famous explorer, John Goddard speak in Pasadena, CA of his worldly adventures. My love for horses was in my DNA. I always knew one day that I was going to travel to distant shores and spend time schooling and competing horses.

Like many of you, life put travel and horses on the side burner. There were kids to raise, careers to pursue and a future to plan for. Doing what was expected and practical was always my excuse for keeping my dreams in a holding pattern. The tragedy in doing this for many of us is that the more you push your dreams to the side the more you lose faith in your ability to make your dreams a reality.

Travel becomes a career

What if you could take steps along the way to make those dreams a reality? Maybe you can’t get to the place of your exact dream but you can keep it in focus and learn along the way. When my children were grown and I decided to go back to work, a job in travel and tourism was my goal. I was lucky to find the perfect fit for me as a Travel Trade Sales Manager, for a local Destination Marketing Organization, Tourism Kelowna. Travel was now a necessary part of my job and offered me opportunities to travel to travel trade conventions and meet with domestic and international agencies from all over the world. While this job was not fulfilling my perfect travel dream, it was providing me with a wealth of knowledge about the travel industry and preparing me for future travel experiences.

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Horse’n around

Schooling and competing horses is not only expensive but time consuming. Having a family and job did not allow me to pursue a riding career but I was always able to have a horse or lease one that kept me learning and my passion burning bright. In the fall of 2013, after 9 months of searching I found the horse of my dreams, Jewel. Yes, it is late in life for me but I never saw age as an obstacle. What I was not prepared for was the nay-sayers, those individuals that think riding is only for the young, those that felt my opportunity had passed me by. Why, I say, should age be a determining factor? If you are capable, and committed to your dream, then like Nike said “just do it”

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Grab your passion now, you never know where it will take you.

For those of you that are entering the retirement chapter of your life where daily commitments to your job and family are substantially reduced, the time is now to pursue something you have always dreamed about doing. Recently I met a newly retired lady whose dream it was to always play a musical instrument but time and money had never afforded her the opportunity. A year ago while helping her mother clean out the basement she came across her grandfather’s old fiddle. That’s all it took for her to know that she was meant to play. After studying relentlessly for the last year, this week she flew to the Maritimes to participate in a fiddler’s workshop. Her enthusiasm for this new found passion is encouraging and contagious. I can hardly wait to hear about her experience.

Here are some steps that will help you move forward:

  1. Make a list of two or three things you have always dreamed of doing. Learning a new language, going skydiving or taking cooking lessons
  2. Remember everyone was a beginner once, and it’s better to start late than never.
  3. Choose the one that will make you the happiest.
  4. Seek out others who are involved in your passion.
  5. Do one thing each day to make your dream come true.
  6. Ignore the nay-sayers and surround yourself with positive individuals.

So go ahead and fill the pages of your next chapter with something you’re passion about, “Because You’re Worth It.”

Written by: Joan Niemeier

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