PASSION and PURPOSE – These buzzwords seem to be used interchangeably when talking about choosing our life paths. The fact is that they are different words and should both be considered when starting out as a boss babe.
You may feel lost when starting your journey. The decision to dive head first into something that will basically consume you for a great portion of your life can be a bit overwhelming. Don’t worry though. That feeling is pretty common. Many successful entrepreneurs knew they wanted to work for themselves before ever knowing what their business would be.
Sometimes you don’t know exactly what you want to do right away. Examining your passions and figuring out your purpose are crucial steps in the decision making process.
Passion and Purpose: What’s the Difference?
By definition, passion is a strong feeling of enthusiasm or excitement for something or about doing something. Purpose is described as the reason for which something exists or is done, made, used, etc.
How do I know what my passion is?
Your passion is self-fulfilling. It is the thing(s) that makes your heart full. “What thing would you do for the rest of your life even if you never got paid to do it?” That answer varies from person to person and can be multiple things for each of us.
I have always been passionate about plus size fashion. Growing up, I struggled to find access to the same style options as my “straight sized” friends. I wanted to be able to shop where they shopped and find age appropriate, fashionable clothing for myself.
In the same vain, I have also been passionate about challenging ideas about the “standard of beauty” that is socially acceptable. I question how something so subjective dictates how we live our lives.
These are things that I enjoy. What classifies it as passion is the fact that these topics spill over into my everyday life more often than not. I find myself having conversations about each very often.
I remember being on a job interview years ago. The position had nothing to do with these particular passions. The interviewer asked me a question about my hobbies and responded to my answer with an off color comment about my use of the term plus size. This immediately triggered my monologue about my thoughts on the subject. It was almost like a reflex and I found myself feeling like I may have gotten carried away. In that moment, though, I realized how many other people needed access to what I was doing for fun. This led me to my purpose.
So what is my purpose?
Your purpose is generally outwardly focused. What do you do that has an impact on the world around you?
Before starting Embodi Collective my passions were personal. My interest in fashion, positive body image, self esteem, etc. were about my own desires. That’s not to say I was selfish with those thoughts; I extended my ideas to my friends and family as well. But I never really thought about any of it on a global scale.
Since then I’ve realized that my purpose is about advocacy. My purpose is to spread the messages that I’m passionate about: self love, body positivity, living your best life, etc. I want for everyone to challenge standards of beauty that are exclusive. It is important to me that everyone has access to things that make them feel beautiful by their own standards. I’d like to help people, specifically women who are underrepresented in media, see themselves as beautiful and worthy through style, fashion and art.
For me, my passion and purpose happen to align pretty plainly. The correlation between passion and purpose may not always that obvious. You might have to be more creative when combining two, but there’s usually a way to make passion and purpose mesh. And you can almost always find ways to make that profitable.
“Have a purpose to your life. Purpose does not mean having a job. You can have a job and still be unfulfilled.” -Maya Angelou
How Can I Figure Out My Passion and Purpose?
Consider these things if you’re a boss babe on a mission to finding your passion and purpose:
- Make a list of things you like to do.
- Write down some things you’re good at.
- How can those skills be of service to others?
That’s a pretty good place to start. Once you have a good list ask yourself these questions:
- Does my idea exist or can it be verified?
- Would I (or anyone else) pay for this?
Now that you have an idea of how to distinguish between passion and purpose, use it to your advantage. What are some things you are passionate about? How can those things contribute to the greater good? Before you know it you’ll be well on your way to a business idea that both interests you and makes you feel good.
Once part figured out and you’re slaying the game walking in your purpose and exploring your passions, it doesn’t hurt to revisit these questions to make sure we’re still on track with our missions.