40Gal Bucket List

A list of life's 'to-do's' before turning 50 … our journey of gettin' stuff done

Archive for the tag “passion”

March: Work & Passion


Since the majority of our time is dedicated to our work, it is imperative to find joy in what you do.  I sometimes struggle with this and often have to remind myself of the positives rather than dwelling on the negatives of my job.  This helps me get through the moments of hating my job and leaves me feeling happy, or at least content.  Another way to counter any negative feelings we have about our jobs is to actively pursue our passions.  Pursuing my passion is another focus of this month as I want to continue to develop my business, my passion,  I started.  So let the month begin (OK I know, it’s already Mar 5) and focus on Work & Passion:

So this month I have decided to focus on 5 Specific Goals:

  1. Enjoy the Fun of Failure: I have started my own business and it is doing quite well, but I know it can be better.  I have asked myself what is holding me back? And the answer is simple:  Fear of Failure.  So to counter that I decided to embrace all those mistakes I am afraid of.  Take them in, thank them, and remind myself that every failure puts me one step closer to success.
  2. Brand Me: Because social media is so integrated in our work lives, I want to make sure my “ brand” looks like … me.  I want to update and make current all my sites (LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, YouTube)  to help increase exposure of myself and of my business.
  3. Give my Blog a Hug:  I have had this blog for over 4 years now and somehow is it still not part of my daily life.  I think about it, I talk about it, but I don’t do anything for it.  This blog has become a personal diary, yet I haven’t given it my lovin’.  What does that say about me?  This month I want to work on my blog, make it look and feel more like me, and give it a big hug!
  4. Efficacy: the power to produce a desired result or effect:  I just love this word.  It’s a funny      word, at least to me, and it really doesn’t roll off the tongue, at least not my tongue.  It’s a word that      seems to be popping up everywhere I go, so I took that as a sign that I should focus on my personal efficacy and believe in my power to get my desired result.  That’ll work.
  5. Separate Work & Passion: Wait?  Why separate?  Well, I currently have 2 jobs: 1 that pays the bills and the other that is my passion.  I am finding that because I work from home, my work and passion tend to get all mixed together which leaves my passion feeling like work which then leads me to not wanting to pursue my passion.   I want to separate the two for now so that  one day my work and my passion will be one and the same.

Ok let’s go …imagesCAEE00B5



Through some soul searching I have come to the realization that what brings me joy is connecting with people and what I am good at and have a passion for is sales.  This lead me searching for an opportunity where I can sell a product I believe in while allowing me to connect with people.   I’ve searched online, asked friends and family, and talked my poor husband’s ear off trying to figure out what I should do with this new realization.

This lead me to direct sales, an industry I was never really interested in, or even thought was ‘legit.’  Do people really make money in direct sales?  Are the products worthy or is it a one-on-one, in-person version of a cheesy 3am infomercial?  What I learned however, surprised me.  It is a legitimate industry that provides amazing goods and services to millions of consumers.  And once I spoke more about this and asked more questions, I learned that many of my family and friends have either bought from someone in direct sales, or have sold themselves.  Hum?  And why wasn’t I ever invited to any of these shindigs?  I do not know.  What I do know is that Direct Sales can be a great way to earn some extra cash, replace my current income, allow me to have a flexible work schedule and meet some amazing people.

Ok, so I think direct sales could be an industry I could succeed in by doing something I am passionate about, but what do I sell?  It’s been a few months trying to really figure this out and I have spoken to a few different companies, but in the end I found a perfect fit for me and I signed up.  It’s official.  I am a business owner.  I am an Independent Sales Consultant for Rodan+Fields!

Today is my official start date.  I am hoping that this new venture will be as exciting as it seems.  Today is the first step on the road to solidifying my passion and turning it into my career.   I just pray that there aren’t too many road blocks, detours, and traffic jams.  But no matter how fast or slow, I will still be moving in the direction I want to go: Forward.

The Evolution of Passion


During my blogging hiatus I have thought a lot about the particular Bucket List Item of finding my passion and turning it into a career.  I know it is something many of us struggle with.  “What do I want to do with my life?” we asked ourselves.  I am asking that question at the ripe old age of 42.  Shouldn’t I know this already?  Shouldn’t I be content with my life’s path.  Well the honest truth is: no I am not.  Fudge I am not!

This hasn’t always been the case.  In college I knew I wanted to live in NYC and work in the apparel industry.  I was able to jump right in the apparel business, but it took me 8 years after I graduated to take the plunge (and risk) to move to NYC,  I did it and it was the best decision I have ever made.  I started my apparel career in retail and then finally entered the wholesale side of the ‘glamorous’  fashion industry in NYC.  The travel, the parties, the clothes were fun and I had a great time, but after 23 years, I have lost that passion for an industry I have loved and dreamed of since I was a young girl.  Granted, I still love clothes and enjoy a good purse that is way too expensive every now and again, but I’ve evolved.  That purse, those shoes, they don’t mean anything to me anymore.  So what has happened is I have grown out of my line of work.  An industry I have been in since college no longer gets me excited.  Lucky magazine comes and I can breeze right though it rather than study each and every page.  I’ve evolved and so has my passion.

What’s next?  Where do I go from here?  I know the passion for the apparel industry has fizzled out, but after thinking long and hard, I realized what brought me the most consistent joy in my work was not my passion in fashion, but my love of connecting with people while selling products that I believed in.  So maybe I have lost my passion for apparel, but not my passion for sales – a passion I never really defined before.

So with this new found realization, maybe I can continue in sales, but start selling new products or services that can bring me the same joy that selling has always brought to me?  Is there something out there that can satisfy this?

What do I love and desire?

Source: piccsy.com via Debbie on Pinterest


I’ve been thinking a lot about the questions I posed in my post PASSION …

  1. What is so important to me that I am willing to suffer for it? 
  2. What drives my emotions?
  3. What do I love and desire?

To answer them, I decided to start with a piece of paper, pencil and a wandering mind.  I also decided to exclude my husband, family and friends as potential answers since obviously I am willing to suffer for them, they drive my emotions and I love them to pieces.  Once you go down that route of focusing on those around you, you lose all ideas of what could be an individual passion that could lead to a career. 

Ok, back to answering the questions … here we go …

Ummm … Ok this is much harder than I thought, especially the question involving suffering.  There is nothing I can think of that I would risk my life’s savings or my life for except my husband, family and friends. So for this first exercise in uncovering my passions I decided to focus on question #3.  The easiest question to answer since we tend to “love” many things.  I let my mind regurgitate all my love and desires.

So again the question: What do I love and desire?

  • My bucket list
  • Blogging
  • Good conversation
  • Politics
  • History
  • Watching Football
  • Challenges
  • Dining out
  • Travel
  • Change
  • Autumn
  • Decorating
  • Bright Colors
  • Exploring
  • My Iphone
  • Cheese and Wine
  • Documentaries
  • Travel
  • Diversity
  • Mexican food
  • Walking/Hiking
  • New York City
  • Genealogy
  • Word With Friends
  • Art
  • Talk shows
  • San Francisco
  • Podcast
  • Learning
  • Fashion
  • Etsy
  • New Orleans
  • Spinning

So that’s my random list I things I love and desire.  There seems to be nothing on this list that is black and white, concrete, an “AH-HA!” of what I am passionate about.  My life’s loves seem to be various shades of gray.  Some I like a little more than others today, but tomorrow I will love another more.  So when does something you “love” become something you “LOVE” and drives your every being?  For Instance,  I have always been one to love decorating and my friends always complimented me on my home style, and I am an avid HGTV watcher, but it stops there, and it stops when the paint dries and we can’t fit anything new into our 600 sq ft NY apartment.  Is this a true passion or just a hobby? I know decorating can be a career, but can it be a career I can be passionate about?

So where do we go from here?  What’s next?  I have my list of things I think answer the question, but nothing stands out at this point.  This is when I need to seek more help and google becomes my assistant. 

I found a wonderful article in helping find your passion:  http://zenhabits.net/the-short-but-powerful-guide-to-finding-your-passion/

In the article they ask even more probing questions:

  1. What are you good at?
  2. What excites you?
  3. What do you read about?
  4. What have you secretly dreamed of?

The article continues with exercises to build on the answers to the above questions.  I think this is my next step.

On a positive note, this first exercise helped me compose a list my ‘loves’ which got my wheels turning.  Next, I was able to find more questions to keep those wheels turning.  I never thought finding my passions would be easy and it will be a process.  So the self-discovering continues …



What is passion really?  We want to find it, feel it, own it?  Right?  “What is your passion” we’re asked, because apparently if we find it, feel it, and own it we can make money from it and turn it into a career.  But how do you figure out what, at your core, you are passionate about?

To figure this out and to help me answer my bucket list item “Discover my passion and turn it into a career” I first had to look up the definition of passion.  This is what our good friends at Merriam-Webster had to say:

pas·sion  noun \ˈpa-shən\

  1. often capitalized
    1. the sufferings of Christ between the night of the Last Supper and his death
    2. an oratorio based on a gospel narrative of the Passion
  2. obsolete : suffering
  3. the state or capacity of being acted on by external agents or forces
    1. (1) : emotion <his ruling passion is greed> (2) plural : the emotions as distinguished from reason
    2. intense, driving, or overmastering feeling or conviction
    3. an outbreak of anger
    1. ardent affection : love
    2. a strong liking or desire for or devotion to some activity, object, or concept
    3. sexual desire d : an object of desire or deep interest

So let’s see, if I am to read this correctly passion encompasses suffering, emotion, and love.  Hum?  Ok.  Let’s break this down to help find our personal passions:


Ask yourself: What is so important to me that I am willing to suffer for it?  Now we can no way be compared to Jesus and the PASSION.  But if we really look at this, there is a lesson.  You have passion when you believe in something so much that you are OK to suffer for that cause, that act, that anything.   So what ‘suffering’ would you tolerate to accomplish what you believe in?  Would you get up at 5 am every morning?  March on the steps of Washington in the cold and rain? Risk your life’s savings?  Or in the extreme, risk your own life? If you are willing to go to the ends of earth and back for something, you have passion for that something.


Ask yourself: What drives my emotions?  What gets your blood boiling or what makes you laugh or cry?   What gets stuck in your brain that you can’t stop thinking about it?  What when it is mentioned in conversations or on TV makes you immediately perk up?  When you feel emotion towards something and it is consistent (over a period of time you maintain that emotion), you have found a passion.


Ask yourself: What do I love and desire?  Now this definition also includes sexual desires, which, of course makes me think of my husband ;-)  but to figure out a passion that could lead to a career, we need to focus on what we love and desire … outside of the bedroom.  What brings you joy and a feeling of genuine happiness?   What do you love to do?  If you feel love, joy, and happiness doing something, you have found a passion.

The definition of PASSION is now much clearer.  The next step is to do some soul searching and answer the questions I posed above.   I have some thinking to do and I hope you do to …

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