Reply To: Ask the experts
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I’m really glad you reached out to ask us about this and that you were willing to share your struggle so openly. You’re definitely not alone in feeling disconnected from your passion — I know a lot of people in this course can relate to that. Your struggle makes so much sense; on the one hand, you deeply want to reconnect with the side of you that’s passionate, creative, driven, artistic, and an out-of-the-box thinker. That’s the part of you that resonates so much with the Firestarter profile. And yet, there’s fear and resistance getting in the way and clouding up your passion — fear of failure, fear of not making money through your passion, fear of other people’s opinions, your own inner critic voice. All of that feels SO heavy and makes feeling passionate again feel like a far off dream. As frustrating and upsetting as this feels right now, it makes complete sense based on the backstory that you shared. Anyone in your situation would be feeling equally discouraged!
The thing I’m hearing the most here is … well, a few things. And I think you’re going to be relieved to hear these points:
— You’re allowing other people’s opinions, beliefs, and fears cloud your natural creativity and drive. It sounds to me like, several years ago you were determined and happy to follow your passion and your curiosity wherever it led you. But then other people swooped in with their judgment and criticism and snuffed out your passion. It’s no wonder you wanted to cut ties with your passion. It hurts to get that kind of feedback! It sounds to me like it’s time for you to get VERY discerning about who’s feedback you choose to listen to. There are probably no more than a handful of people in your life who have the qualities necessary to give you meaningful feedback: they’re loving, supportive, looking out for your best interest, respectful (and respectable), constructive/gentle with their feedback, and give you a safe space to open up. From now on, anyone outside of that small group — you have full permission to ignore their feedback because they’re not on your side.
— You’re playing the role of the cynic, but I don’t believe that’s really you. Just from the way you wrote this post, I can tell that you’re a natural creator, innovator, and optimist. But you may have adopted the (false) belief that optimists can’t also be realists, so you thought you had to become a cynic in order to be practical. And the reason this feels so bad to you is because it’s not who you are — it conflicts with your inner free spirit. The truth is, whatever you look for … you’ll find it. So if you’re looking for things to go wrong, they will. If you fully expect things to work out for you, they mostly will. So I want you ask you — will you give your inner optimist permission to resurface? Can you allow hope to slightly outweigh fear?
— You’re a clear Firestarter who’s trying to structure your life the way a Thriver would, and it’s naturally causing you to feel “off.” You asked, “Is there a way to see work as just a way to have the finances to live?” Yes, there is. It’s the way most Thrivers view work. The truth is, you might have a secondary Thriver profile, but you said that the Firestarter profile felt very accurate for you, so that’s clearly prominent. So your Firestarter self is likely going to feel perpetually frustrated in a job that you don’t absolutely love and that doesn’t give you lots of independence and creativity.
— You’re tired of limiting yourself. I heard a few limiting statements in your post. For example, you said “I am now 29 and feel like I have no time to dabble or soul search anymore.” I don’t believe that age has anything to do with self-awareness, finding (or rediscovering) your passion, or soul searching! A lot of us impose these arbitrary timelines on ourselves, and it creates so much unnecessary pressure. Whenever you find yourself thinking or saying self-limiting statements like this, I want you to question, “How true is this really?”
— You’ve shut down your emotions. It absolutely makes sense that, after your emotionally destructive relationship, you said you “haven’t wanted to write in any sense or even touch anything that would draw any emotion or passion from me.” You were trying to block yourself from all of the horrible emotions that were coming up in that relationship. But when you block the bad emotions, you also block the great, passionate ones. Since you love to write, I’d suggest giving yourself at least a solid hour alone with no distractions (no phone, no music, no TV, no anything) where you just free-write. Allow anything and everything to come up, and any emotions you experience during that time are valid. No judging yourself! This is just a process of reconnecting with your emotions.
All of this, if you ask me, boils down to two things: 1) Giving yourself permission to want what you want and to express yourself authentically, and 2) changing your internal dialogue to be more supportive and less self-limiting.
There’s SO much more I could talk about here, so I tried to mention just a few key things that immediately came to mind. But I want you to know that our other program (The Passion Plan Virtual Experience) was created specifically to answer the exact questions you just asked. So if you want a much more in-depth answer to this, you might want to consider joining us for the next round of the PPVE when we open enrollment in January. It sounds like your definitely ready to take this to the next level.