No Alarms Club

Audit Your Passion

Episode Summary

It's okay to pursue many different things before we settle on something to grow into a career. Every skill we pick up now will help us in the future.

Episode Notes

Key Takeaways From This Episode:

Action Items:

Resources Mentioned in This Episode:

Episode Transcription


[00:00:00] Hello, you are listening to the No Alarms Club podcast. My name is Garrett. 

[00:00:05] This is a podcast where we design a lifestyle around not having to wake up to an alarm every day. 

[00:00:13] That means we work when we want, we work where we want, we work on what we want to, and most importantly, we don't have to commute because commuting is the worst. 

[00:00:24]Right now we are working through a book called Overlap by a really cool dude named Sean McCabe. 

[00:00:34] His website is That's S E a N w E 

[00:00:42]Go pick up the book, read along with us. 

[00:00:45] You'll get different things out of it than what I share with you. 

[00:00:49]So, if you put both together, you put my notes together with your notes. 

[00:00:55]Then you get like super powered. 

[00:00:57]We've heard this cliche in movies where one person is breaking up with another person and they say, "you don't love me. You love the idea of me." 

[00:01:11]I hope that you've never heard that in real life, but right now it's actually kind of related to this episode. 

[00:01:20] This episode is titled Audit Your Passion. 

[00:01:23]Here's the thing about passions. 

[00:01:25]Each of us have a long list. 

[00:01:27]The reality is we don't love every one of these passions. 

[00:01:32] We just love the idea of them. 

[00:01:34] I struggle with this a lot myself. 

[00:01:37] I have been struggling with this for years. 

[00:01:40]Anybody who's known me since probably 2012 has known that I change focuses every three months it seems like. 

[00:01:49]I've tried so many different things. 

[00:01:52] But I always stopped when things got too hard. 

[00:01:58] I usually had an excuse. 

[00:02:01] For example, I got my Bachelor of Applied Science in video game design, and it's a tough industry to get into. 

[00:02:09] And there's lots of things I did wrong. 

[00:02:12] But the excuse I used was that it's too hard to make games alone. 

[00:02:16]The truth is I could have done it. 

[00:02:20]I could have worked hard and I could've made it happen. 

[00:02:23]There's so many ways I could've made small games and made money off of them and built a following and just grown from there. 

[00:02:31] But I didn't. 

[00:02:33]I gave up. 

[00:02:35]A lot of times giving up is a weakness. 

[00:02:39]Sometimes it's a strength. 

[00:02:41]In episode five we talked about harnessing our stubbornness. 

[00:02:48]We talked about learning the difference between what we should be stubborn enough to keep pursuing. 

[00:02:54]And when to call it quits. 

[00:02:57]The reality of pursuing a passion is that there's always going to be parts that we don't like. 

[00:03:05] There's always going to be days where we don't feel like doing it. 

[00:03:09] That doesn't mean that we're not passionate about it. 

[00:03:12]To know when you're really passionate about something, you'll be willing to push through those times. 

[00:03:18]I wasn't passionate enough about video game design to push through the difficulties that I came up against. 

[00:03:27]If you're struggling with having too many ideal passions, as I did, the best thing to do is to allow yourself to enter what Sean referred to as an exploratory phase. 

[00:03:42] This is what I did for several years. 

[00:03:44] It seems to have worked out. 

[00:03:46] I think I'm doing pretty well right now. 

[00:03:47] I've got my myself focused and in line. I know where I'm headed. I know what I'm working on. 

[00:03:54]During this time, you're going to feel like you're not getting anywhere. 

[00:03:58] I want to make sure that you understand you are. I promise. 

[00:04:03]Don't worry about that. Just do things. Make mistakes. Try something. 

[00:04:09] Push yourself until you meet an obstacle and you want to give up. 

[00:04:13] Then push through that obstacle. Or don't. 

[00:04:17] If you don't, it's not the thing to be passionate about. 

[00:04:20]If you're like me and you have had a huge list of passions this is really what works. 

[00:04:28]On the other hand, if you're struggling to find anything you're passionate about, because nothing seems to stick and you just feel like you're not passionate about anything at all... 

[00:04:40] Sean says to pick two categories that interest you and put them together. 

[00:04:45] An example that he uses is the two categories, logic and creativity. 

[00:04:53]I wish he had provided maybe a list of categories because I'm not really sure how he came up with logic and creativity as two different categories. 

[00:05:02] And I don't really know his thought process behind this. 

[00:05:05]But that's his example. So we're going to roll with it. 

[00:05:08] Hopefully it will provide some insight for you. 

[00:05:13]If you take logic and creativity, those two things together would make a good musician. Or a good computer programmer. Or web developer. A good engineer. 

[00:05:25]Definitely someone who's good with user experience and user interface design. 

[00:05:31]Another thing you can do is take a look at things you've done in the past and enjoyed. 

[00:05:38]This could be in the form of tasks from your current or previous jobs. 

[00:05:44] Or maybe in college you took some elective that you thought was going to be a throwaway just to get some credits. 

[00:05:52] But ended up really enjoying something about that class. 

[00:05:55]Personally, I felt that way about sociology. 

[00:05:58] And I still read quite a lot in my free time about sociology and I study quite a bit of sociology and psychology just on my own. 

[00:06:08] For one thing, I believe it helps in understanding the world and other people. 

[00:06:14]But also, I just really enjoy it. 

[00:06:17]It's really important right now at this point in time to remember that we're not worried about making money yet. 

[00:06:26] We'll worry about the money later. 

[00:06:30] Right now we need to figure out your passion. 

[00:06:33]Check out some of your hobbies. 

[00:06:36] The things that you do for fun without getting paid. 

[00:06:40]Sometimes those things should just stay as hobbies. 

[00:06:45] Other times they may be the passion for you to pursue. 

[00:06:49]For example, I love making music. 

[00:06:53] I always say that that was my first love and I remember being a kid and loving music. 

[00:07:00] I remember singing Backstreet Boys and Nsync with my cousins in my room playing CDs on my PlayStation. 

[00:07:09] And I wanted to be in a boy band. 

[00:07:12]But when I try to make music in a professional capacity, I suddenly lose my joy. 

[00:07:19] It just like escapes me. 

[00:07:20] I have no fun making music anymore when I try to do it as a profession. 

[00:07:27]So I don't. I keep it a hobby and I have a ton of fun, keeping it as a hobby. 

[00:07:32] And I don't worry about marketing or business or anything like that. 

[00:07:36] And music is something that will stay a hobby for me. 

[00:07:40]Side note though, I do actually make money from my music, surprisingly to me. 

[00:07:45]But I don't do any sort of promotions, really. 

[00:07:48] I just make it and release it. 

[00:07:49]Because it's creative commons people use it and mention it in their podcasts and stuff and that seems to work for me. 

[00:07:57]The last tip that Sean shares to help you find your passion is to ask people around you, the people that know you best, what you're good at. 

[00:08:08] Sean points out that the important part is what others think you're good at. 

[00:08:14] You might think you're good at something and maybe you are, but if other people don't know that you have that skill or they don't think you're good at it, they won't pay you for it. 

[00:08:25]That's why we have to ask people who are close to us what we're good at and then see how we feel about pursuing those things. 

[00:08:34]And maybe you can take a couple of those things and combine them to create something unique. 

[00:08:40]Right now, it's really important to remember that you don't have to do one thing forever. 

[00:08:46]It's highly unlikely that you will. 

[00:08:48]Whatever it is that you start pursuing now, whether it works out or not, is not a waste of time. 

[00:08:56] It's never a waste of time. 

[00:08:58]Every skill that you gain adds on to your progress towards the future. 

[00:09:04]Another personal example: despite my desire to exit a career in digital marketing that has spanned almost a decade and a half, all those skills that I've gained are paramount to my future success. 

[00:09:19] Whatever it is that I do after this, I will never worry about being successful because I know how to market whatever it is that I'm doing. 

[00:09:30]I've also learned management skills from past jobs. 

[00:09:34] My current day job as communications director at a nonprofit has taught me a lot about nonprofits and the skills I cherish most from this job have been working with people and digital events and in person events. 

[00:09:53]I'm extremely confident that these are skills that I'm going to have and use for the rest of my life. 

[00:09:59] Everything you're doing, even the pursuits that you feel like you failed at, are teaching something that will help you in the future. 

[00:10:09]You just might not realize it until later. 

[00:10:13]Your action items for this episode are to audit your passion, as the title says. 

[00:10:21]Sean has given us quite a few things that we can do to help figure it out. 

[00:10:27]You can make a list of things and start trying them one by one. 

[00:10:34] You can ask people what you're good at. 

[00:10:37] You can see if one of your hobbies is something that you could pursue professionally. 

[00:10:45] Maybe dig back into school and come up with something that you enjoyed back then that you totally forgot about. 

[00:10:51]Either way we're not starting anything yet. 

[00:10:54] We're just getting this information together. 

[00:10:57]Just gather it and keep it in your head. 

[00:10:59] Maybe write it down because we're going to need this information in the next episode. 

[00:11:04]You're listening to the No Alarms Club podcast. My name is Garrett. 

[00:11:07] I really appreciate you taking the time to listen today because I know that time is precious and there are like a bajillion podcasts now. 

[00:11:17] Which is great, but it's so difficult to choose which ones to spend time on. 

[00:11:23] And that's why I am always so humbled when I log into my podcast dashboard and I see that you showed up and listened to me talk today. 

[00:11:34]If you would like to help support this podcast, I would love to get some more reviews. 

[00:11:43] You can use whatever your favorite podcast player is. 

[00:11:47]The one that's probably most important to the success of this podcast is Apple Podcasts. 

[00:11:55] But honestly, whatever it is you use, if there's any way you can give this a thumbs up or a review. 

[00:12:01] Whatever you can do, I greatly appreciate it. 

[00:12:04]Perhaps even more important than that, you could also share this podcast with people that you think would get something out of it. 

[00:12:14] Whether that's information that they need, some wisdom for their day, or maybe just entertainment. 

[00:12:22]Thanks again, and I will see you in the next episode.