With all the talk about vision at the beginning of a new year, passion often comes up in conversations as the fuel to move vision and dreams forward. Passion is defined as a “strong and barely controllable emotion.”
Where are you on the passion scale? Do you swing from high to low, day to day? Or feel like you prod along, wondering where you’ll get your next inspiration? Or are you in a spot that is mainly meaningful and at an even keel?
Many of the women I work with express feeling disconnected from the life they want to live. They are too “worried”, “fearful”, or “rudder-less” and are looking for connections to themselves, to God and to others for meaningful support and life different than the one they are living. In coaching, they have decided to invest in themselves to figure out the disconnects and move forward in connecting the dots of their lives.
How do you go about kindling passion and connections to the important intentions of your life? Take this 5 question reflective self-inventory to discover more about your passions, connections and what they tell you about where you stand right now.
1. Who is God to you?
How do you spend time getting to know Him and He know you? Note 3 ways you spend time with Him.
In reflecting about God and your relationship with Him, you begin to note the relationship of your spiritual side. For me, my healing and passion grew exponentially as I started spending more and more time in God’s word and hearing God speak to my heart. I personally spend time with Him by reading the Word, praying, journaling, and outside in nature as well as with my friends worshiping at church. How do you spend time with Him.
2. What brings you joy and happiness?
Give yourself permission to spend time with a variety of options. Consider 5 ways you can focus on joy and happiness for your soul
This is an area to imagine and visualize. How often to you pause in the day and notice what is bringing you joy and happiness? How are you celebrating the little things in life? I tend to plow on to the next things. Norman Vincent Peale writes in his book, The Power of Positive Thinking, “Anyone who desires it, who will sit, and who learns and applies the right formula may become a happy person.” And Paul, in his letter to the Romans, remind us, “Be transformed by the renewing of our minds.” Romans 12:2
3. What do you value?
How does what you do each day reflect those values? Make a list of 5 values.
This is a big area of intentional living and passion fueling. If you value creativity, yet have no outlet for your creativity, then you may be feeling disconnected. If you value growth, yet are working in the same position you’ve had for years, then you may be feeling stuck. Look at your values to see how many you get to live out each day.
4. What breaks your heart and stirs you to action?
How does what you’re doing make a difference to those around you?
Passion and dreams are fueled usually by big pictures and a call to action. What is burning in your heart that you feel is an injustice? Or that you are always worrying about? For example, I know someone who is worried about her children moving into the teenage years. She wanted to create a home where it was the place to hang out. She realized her current home was not big enough for that to happen. So over the past two years, she and her husband have been house hunting. Finally, this week, they have found the house that is big enough to be that neighborhood hangout she envisions. Her daughter is going into high school and her son will soon be in middle school and it’s in the same neighborhood where they currently live. The stirring to action doesn’t necessarily take place overnight. This worry stirred her to action and will continue to fuel her passion for her family.
5. Who in your life matters most?
How are you spending time with them?
Distractibility also rates high on keeping us from our passions and dreams. On the one hand, I may say that God, my family and friends are most important to me, but I have to ask myself honestly, if my calendar reflects that passion. I can get so distracted by work that days go by without taking the time to enjoy others and I am suppose to be retired!!!!!
I realize that getting intentional about a date time with my husband, scheduling time with my adult children and grandchildren and starting my day with God are vital to my wellbeing. I also need to reach out to friends who love and care about me and not wait for them. How I get supported and connected to others is my responsibility, even when it requires a lot of effort on my part. For me, it is a matter of feeding my soul connected to these supportive relationships.
What did these five questions reveal to you?
Notice that time is one of those common threads to evaluating connections and passions. Where you decide to spend your time, there your heart is, intentionally or not. How intentional are you being with your choices? As Lysa Terkherst writes in her book, The Best Yes,
The decisions you make determine the schedule you keep. The schedule you keep determines the life you live. And how you live your life determines how you spend your soul
May you decide what fuels your passion and what next steps you want to take to intentionally connect with the life you want to live.
Nancy Booth is a certified spiritual director. She walks alongside women who are seeking God’s fingerprints in their lives and want more awareness of what their own true identity is. She helps women shed hurry, worry and disconnect as they seek to hear God’s voice in everyday living. She has a private facebook group that also prays for one another that you can join. She would also love to pray for you. Send your request for prayers and to join the closed Sacred Moments Seeking God facebook group to firstname.lastname@example.org