Having a plan?
I envy those who from an early age know what they want be or achieve and where they want to go. I do not understand how it is possible to plan life so early. And of course it is not. I’m pretty sure if we checked with these people ten years from now we would have found a lot of them who have deviated greatly from their streamlined plan to become x or y (or z if that’s the goal)
Of course, we only hear about those who for some nerdy reason had a plan and stuck to it and, presumably, found themselves at ease as x, y or z.
Never before has the expression “You make the path as you walk ” been more appropriate. Therefore, when I write in (the beginning of) this blog that I am an old man who has lived life without any kind of plan or Passion, then it is obviously not correct. I really just followed the path and walked it as it came to be.
Finding Passion Whatever It Means?
But to those who are looking for their Passion. (I do not know exactly what the word means, but I think it has someone with finding a form of activity, trait, life deed that – when you do it, makes you infinitely happy and brings you into the so-called flow)
The point is that happiness – which we all strive for, does not exist as a goal. Countless are the self-help articles, books and youtube videos and other nonsense that I have read and heard and seen that give the recipe for happiness as if you are cooking soup.
How to make the happy soup?
Mix four parts of this and seven grams of that, stir together and simmer for x number of minutes and voila – you have found happiness.
Of course, this is not the case. Happiness is a feeling best seen in the rearview mirror. You can wake up one day with a touch of joy in your chest and then it disappears. It was happiness. This is not to say that happiness came and went
(Yes, that’s really how it works) but there is nothing stopping it from coming again and again and again.
Happiness is a state of satisfaction
A form of joy after pain.
If not pain then joy after a strain.
If not stress then joy after a challenge.
If not a challenge, then rejoice over a problem solving.
And so I can keep on going. Happiness is mastery. Keep doing something that creates joy. Which makes sense.
Lets approach the word Passion
I saw a youtube video of Nate Murphy the other day. He is a young man, a vagabond one would have called him in my younger days. Today he is one of the many nomads who roam the world in their campingvans, boats or as backpackers. Not a bad word about these people. They live their lives in a way that old men like me only can envy them. Fearless young girls and boys who followed the so-called dream.
I started following Nate because he originally gave a lot of input on how to build a campervan. He was one of several I followed and after building my own campervan I had a reunion with Nate the other day. He had made some good video clips that were more philosophical considerations about campervan life, Life in it self, and, yes, Passion.
I admit that I liked his approach to the pursuit of happiness.
It coincided with my own.
Follow your interest
Instead of feeling like a loser because one has not found the great Passion in life, or does not know how to find it – or that one has not managed to plan life down to the smallest detail and then followed the plan in those details – that has never been the Road to Happiness.
According to Nate (and myself), the path to Passion (and thus happiness) is based on something completely different and more fundamental. And easy accessible.
Follow Your Interests is the recipe for finding their Passion. Even though it sounds simple, it may actually be so banally correct. Do what you always find interesting and you will find your Passion in life. And if you find it, then the bluffs will come regularly.
The old man (that is me) and life
I know I use the word old about myself and you might get a little bored that I emphasize it all the time, but let me again mention the fact that I am 59 years old. And when I think back of my 50 memorable years of these 59 – it strikes me that feeling happiness has been when I have done things that was of interest to me. From childhood it was playing football and playing, but lets skip to the good parts (yes I guess you have heard that song) and fast forward: I noticed that the flow came when I wrote my books, (10 of them) built me a separate website (2 of them) and built a campervan (still rebuilding it.) This plus a lot of other things that have been of my interests. Preferably positive things. (I will not mention the negative things that have occupied my time, because there are clearly not things being healthy interest.) But my life have been exercise, travel, learning – in short, many, many interests that together have brought me along the way and where I am today.
All the while I thought I had no purpose or meaning in my life. If you look back, you will find that as long as you have followed your interests, you have had goals and meaning and hopefully some happiness as well.
What do people usually regret when they die?
It is important to emphasize that one should be honest with oneself about what is interesting. Sitting in a tedious job that one for his own (and the boss’s part) tells is interesting, is not a recipe for Passion. Making money is not that either. Research shows that the two most important things people regret at deathbed are: 1- that they did not follow their dream and were more true to themselves. No. 2: that they worked to hard.
Does this sound familiar? Is this not exactly what we humans do? We follow other people’s dreams and we think we need to earn as much money as possible. Do you think someone ever on the verge of death is annoyed having earned too little money?
Do not think so.
Therefore, remember to be true to yourself also when it comes to what your genuine interests are.
(Or who do you want to be at the age of 96?) Restarting your life (or reinventing it), sounds like an American “pull yourself together”
Everything written in these pages is based on personal experience. Overall, this is the way I remember what happened. And everything, of course, is based on