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Last Updated on January 1, 2020

14 Amazing Things That Happen When You Live Your Passion

14 Amazing Things That Happen When You Live Your Passion

Have you ever thought about how amazing your life would be if you live your passion every day? It seems like just last week when you were that kid who was going to be an astronaut, pilot, or inventor. It probably seems like yesterday when you finished school, got your first job, and charted out your career advancement.

Then something unexpected happened… you grew up.

What does it mean to grow up anyways? And why does “growing up” seem to imply you must forgo your dreams and passions?

While society wants you to believe living your passion is irresponsible and foolish, we are going to focus on 14 amazing things that happens when you live your passion.

1. Increased Self-Confidence

There is a little-known truth that everyone wants to be accepted for who they are. Yet, everyone is not comfortable expressing who they are. When you ignore the opinions of others and live your passion, you will become more comfortable expressing yourself.

Oftentimes, when you are not living your passion, you are living the life that you believe is acceptable to others. Your confidence will suffer when you give into the pressures of society, your friends, and family. This is largely because you are forcing yourself to do something that is of little interest to you.

There is probably a good reason for this, so when you are not working within your strengths and interests, your performance will be sub-par.

2. Lower Stress Levels

Job stress is the major source of stress for adults and it is associated with “increased rates of heart attack, hypertension and other disorders.”[1]

Let me start out by debunking the misconception that all stress is bad. Those who follow their passions and those who do not will both encounter stress. The difference is in the kind of stress you come across.

Those who live their passion have an internal motivation that helps bring balance to their situation. As a result, they will most likely have stressful situations that come and go. A good example would be you have three important projects that need to be completed in the same day. Subsequently, you feel stressed until the day is over.

Those who are not living their passion are usually not enjoying their work and find it stressful every day. The act of waking up, putting their clothes on, and driving into work stresses them. They dread every Monday and yearn for every Friday.

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3. Fulfillment in Your Work

As we started to touch on, there is nothing more draining than “working to live.” You feel stuck because you have bills to pay and your job pays the bills.

Even though there is a bit of uncertainty surrounding your passion, you cannot underestimate the value of loving what you do.

By pursuing your passion, you will feel fulfilled in your work. You will no longer feel the need to listen to podcasts and audio-books while working (trying to fill that unfulfilled void). You will have the joy of living your passion, instead of planning to live your passion. There is nothing more rewarding than doing what you were called to do.

4. Mastery of Work-Life Balance

There is a saying that if you live your passion, you no longer need a work-life balance. The premise is work-life balance is only needed when your work is draining.

When you are following your passion, your life is in constant balance. Your work does not feel like a job because you would do it for free.

Can you imagine, wishing you could be working because you truly enjoy what you do? Well, that is exactly what will happen when you are pursuing your passion.

5. Fewer Regrets Later in Life

In the end, most people will not regret the things they did, but things they did not do.

Imagine what your life would be like if you pursued all your dreams and passions. Now imagine if you ran into that person and had to explain to him why you did not pursue your passion. This is the real-life conversation most people are having when it is all but too late.

Take a risk and bet on yourself. Even if it does not work out exactly as you would have hoped, you will be better for it.

6. Personal Growth

The reason most people do not live their passion is because of the uncertainty surrounding their passion. You may have doubts regarding your ability to succeed financially, professionally, or even emotionally.

Sometimes, you are right to think this way. This does not mean you should accept this reality and do nothing about it. Instead, spend some time developing the skill-set needed to accomplish your passion.

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You can become a rocket scientist if you still want to be an astronaut. You can practice and pursue your pilots license if you want still want to be a pilot.

Map out what skills you need to develop to live your passion and then take the steps to do so.

7. Positive Attraction

Sometimes you fear that your passion is not going to be received well by others. The thing about living a less than authentic life, you are going to attract the wrong people.

When you live your life and follow your passions, you are going to attract like-minded people.

To be honest, you are probably going to rub some people the wrong way when you are pursuing your passion. People do not like change and when you change, it could change your relationships.

Do not let this be something that will hold you back though. Your growth is tied to your willingness to pursue the beliefs that will enable you to achieve your goal.

8. Expand Your Comfort Zone

Do not fall into the trap of believing that you have to give everything up to follow your passion. These types of limiting beliefs keep most people from ever starting their journey to change their life.

In fact, you don’t need to give up everything to start afresh. Here’s why.

Allow yourself to slowly expand your comfort zone and try new things. You can continue to live your existing life, while pursuing new adventures on the side.

As you grow more comfortable in your ability to live your passion, you can slowly shift more time towards it. Before you know it, you will be all-in and living your life to the fullest.

9. Be Grateful

It is true that you can and should be grateful all the time. There is always something to be grateful for in your life. Even if you got a flat tire on you way home from work, at least you have a vehicle.

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Similarly, you should always be grateful to have a job. Yet, there is little doubt that you will feel more grateful if you are doing something you are passionate about every day. You could realistically find yourself excited to wake up every morning because you know it is another day to fulfill your life’s purpose.

10. Reconnect with Your Inner-Self

There was a time when you felt free. You felt like you could do anything and everything was possible.

When you start living your passion, you are most likely reconnecting with things you loved as a child. By taking a moment and realizing the things you loved before society told you what to love, you are finding a lost piece of yourself.

Revisit your childhood joys and take note of what you loved doing. Like me, you may find that you love putting puzzles together. This could speak on your analytical nature and help you understand why you are so passionate about putting things together and solving problems.

Whatever it may be, take a moment and rediscover the “real you” that was forced to “grow up”.

11. Kinder Person

Your passion is most likely going to benefit a lot of people. There is something wrong with the world that you believe you can help improve. If more people would live their passion, there is little doubt the world would be a better place.

There is a peace and joy that you will find when you are living your passion, and that will rub off on your interactions with others. You may have heard the saying, “hurt people, hurt people”. This means that the person who is bad at your job is most likely dealing with something in their own life.

When you pursue your passion, you are satisfied and at peace with the world, and you will be kinder to others.

12. Unleash Your Creativity

The thing about living a life absent of your passion is that you are most likely living the commonly walked path. Security in life is often the absence of creativity.

When you leave the path of least resistance and start to live your passion, you must unleash your creativity to succeed. You are going to be venturing into uncharted waters in your life and it can be intimidating. But that is where the magic happens.

When you find yourself face to face with an obstacle logged between you and your passion, you need to trust in yourself that you will prevail.

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13. Change the Narrative

You have an inner voice that is telling you who you are, what you can do, and what you deserve. Sometimes you have split feelings about pursuing your passion. On the one hand, you are grateful for the life you have and content with everything it entails. Or you have a burning desire to pursue your passion and take a risk.

By understanding the limiting narrative you are telling yourself (I am not good enough, I should be happy with the job I have now, etc.), you will be better equipped to change your narrative.

Your new narrative will be grounded in an understanding that you can pursue your passion without that meaning you are ungrateful or unappreciative of the life you have now.

14. Conquer Your Fears

Fear leads to procrastination and procrastination leads to the death of your desire to pursue your passion.

Avoid the temptation to rationalize keeping things the way they are until you have more experience, more time, and more influence. There will always be something that could be better. If you give into your fears, they will only continue to grow.

By living your passion, you will have put your fears in their place. Remember, it is okay to be afraid, it is not okay to allow that fear to stall your efforts.

Final Thoughts

One of the most fascinating things about living your passion is the freedom and ease of burden.

Do not think another moment what your life would be like if you lived your passion. Instead, you need to go out there and start living it.

No matter how small the change, you will start to see the benefits discussed. Once you start seeing the benefits, there will be nothing holding you back.

More About Living Your Passion

Featured photo credit: Spencer Dahl via unsplash.com

Reference

[1] The American Institute of Stress: Workplace Stress

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Last Updated on September 29, 2020

How to Change Your Life at 60 Years Old and Feel Proud of Yourself

How to Change Your Life at 60 Years Old and Feel Proud of Yourself

Ever heard the phrase 60 is the new 40? While that maybe an exaggeration, it’s meant to highlight the very real phenomenon of our ever increasing health and longer lifespans.

For the average person who turned 60 in 1970, they could expect to retire at age 64 and live to age 70.8. For someone who turned 60 in 2010, they can very easily work throughout their entire 60’s and expect to live to at least 78.7 years old.[1] With the advances in modern medicine, lower rates of smoking and generally healthier lifestyles, our active and productive years can expand well into our 70’s and beyond.

How we choose to use this “extra” time will be determined by our current situation and our priorities for the future.

For some, their 60’s are a time to kick back and relax. They have worked for 30+ years, lived below their means and diligently saved money for retirement. They may also have sold a successful business, or been able to retire from a (increasing scarce) job that had a good pension.

For others, the prospect of retirement isn’t even a thought. Whether it’s a case of financial reality or just the psychological need to be productive, a continuing presence in the workforce is a reality for more and more of the 60+ crowd.

So how to change your life at 60 years old and feel proud of yourself?

Changing Priorities in Your 60’s

For most us us, our priorities change as we get older. Living for parties and excitement, what use to be called “working for the weekend” slowly gives way to working on the weekend and eventually working towards retirement.

By the time we hit our 60’s, a lot of us are looking to slow down. Health issues, either our own, our spouses or parents often come into play at this time in our life. This combined with having (hopefully) grown children, a paid or nearly paid off home and bit of savings in the bank. This means that you can start to trade long hours and stressful work situations for a more flexible schedule and more leisure time.

The key to making a successful life change in your 60’s is being prepared for both the mental and financial challenges you are likely to face.

Understanding the Psychological Challenges

Any major life change comes with its own set of psychological challenges. When that change takes place in our 60’s. there are some very specific psychological issues to be aware of.

Some of these issues are apparent and we easily recognize them. For instance, we’ve all heard someone say “When I retire, I don’t know what I’ll do with all that time on my hands”. While other challenges are more subtle and harder to quantify such as depression and anxiety.

While not everyone suffers with all or even most of them, here are come common psychological issues to be aware of:

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Anxiety

Even positive life changes can cause our anxiety levels to increase. Humans are creatures of habit. We develop routines that make our lives predictable and we rely on that predictability to give us comfort.

Now imagine that after 30+ years of having a relatively stable and routine job, you suddenly retire, get sick, or find yourself out of a job. The routine that you have relied upon to give you a sense of normalcy is suddenly gone.

In humans, the natural response to any major life changing event is an increase in anxiety. Symptoms and severity will vary from person to person, but you should always expect your anxiety levels to increase with any major life change in your 60’s.

What can you do about it?

Establish a new routine to replace the old one, this is the reason we have hobbies!

Gardening, golf, tennis, volunteer work all can help to get you back into a comfortable routine.

Helpful hint: Pick a hobby that has both a physical and social component to it. Both physical and social activity will help to lower anxiety levels.

Depression

Even the most happy-go-lucky of us become susceptible to depression during a major life event. In fact, when retiring, changing careers or even striking out on a new business adventure, both anxiety and depression can go hand in hand.

You may find yourself with a lot of excess “nervous” energy that you would have used at your job to meet deadlines and get things done. On the other hand, you may find that you have no energy and all and it’s tough to even get out of bed.

While everyone experiences everyday or “normal” bouts of anxiety and depression, it becomes a problem when these episodes become severe, or last longer that a few days.

At that point, it turns into a serious life threatening situation. It’s recommended that a person seeks medical help if they experience any of the following symptoms:

  • Feelings of extreme sadness, emptiness or hopelessness that seem to envelop you.
  • Angry outbursts, irritability or frustration, especially over small or normally insignificant matters.
  • Loss of interest or pleasure in activities that use to give pleasure, such as sex, hobbies or sports.
  • Sleep disturbances, including insomnia or hypersomnia (sleeping too much).
  • General tiredness or malaise, so that even small tasks seem to take a lot of effort.
  • Unusual changes in appetite, rapid weight loss or gain.
  • Slowed or delayed patterns of thinking, speaking or body movements.
  • Constant feelings of worthlessness or guilt, fixating on past failures or self-blame
  • Trouble thinking, concentrating, making decisions and remembering things (more than normal).
  • Frequent or recurrent thoughts of death, suicide or suicide attempts.
  • Unexplained physical problems, such as back pain, headaches or stomach ailments.

Dealing with the Financial Challenges

There are very unique financial considerations to take into account when making a major life change in your 60’s.

Depending on your situation, you may find yourself having to come to terms with a completely new relationship with money. Whether retiring, changing careers or starting your own business, chances are your income is going to take a hit.

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Part of making a successful life change at 60 is anticipating and planning for these events so you don’t get blindsided. The following is a list of general recommendations that everyone in their 60’s should consider.

1. Get aggressive about paying off debt

Especially credit card debt, it’s almost always at a high interest rate and, without any tax advantages, it just makes all of your purchases more expensive.

So if you are still carrying balances on your credit cards every month, it’s time to get those paid off.

Start with the credit card that has the highest interest rate, and then work your way to the card with the lowest rate.

These tips on How to Nix Your Credit Card Debt in Less Than 3 Years can help you too.

2. Pay off the house

If your home isn’t paid off already, after paying off credit card debt, this should be the next goal. It’s much less stressful going into a situation where you’ll have less income if your house is paid off.

You’ll not only reduce your expenses by not having a mortgage payment, but you’ll also have the piece of mind that comes with knowing that your home isn’t going anywhere.

3. Make a budget

No matter what kind of change you make in your 60’s — career change, retirement or becoming a entrepreneur, both your income and expenses are going to change.

Things like the cost of commuting, wardrobe expenses, credit card and mortgage payments are likely to be reduced. You’ll still need to budget for things like home repair and maintenance (how’s the AC unit or the roof?). Car maintenance and even replacement.

And don’t forget about leisure and entertainment expenses, after all, we all need to enjoy life. As a general rule, 30% of your budget should be allocated to leisure and entertainment expenses.

4. Examine and re-adjust your investment portfolio

This is where a good financial planner comes in. While your earlier investment goals were designed to maximize the amount of money in your retirement account. At this point in your journey, the goals have changed to providing you an income for the rest of your life.

You also want to protect the principal from unnecessary risks so it lasts as long as you do. A good financial adviser can help you make the change from a growth orientated investment strategy into more dividend or income producing assets for your golden years.

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5. Consider a change of address

Depending on where you live, moving to a new state might make financial sense. High tax states not only can zap your resources faster than states with lower taxes, but can often times make you get much more “bang for your buck” by moving.

Things like housing, personal property, sales and gas taxes can all add up to a significant savings in a low tax state. Places like Texas, Arizona, Nevada and Florida all have an influx of people migrating from the higher tax states on each coast.

6. Reexamine your insurance needs

A good experienced insurance broker is your best asset when tackling this task.

Do you still need that disability policy to cover your mortgage in case you get hurt? Or could you take that money and buy an annuity that would give you some extra income? What about the cash value of your life insurance?

Walt Disney used the cash value of his life insurance to start Disneyland.[2] Even your car insurance needs to be reevaluated. You can often times save money through good driving and senior discounts as well as eliminating your commuter miles.

Talk to your insurance broker to maximize the benefits and minimize the costs of insurance.

7. Consider becoming an entrepreneur

Roughly 1/3 of people in their 60’s decide to strike out on their own and be their own boss. And why not?

Children are (usually) out of the house, household and credit card debt is likely to be low, most people have some savings by this point in their life and often times they are at the pinnacle of their career.

With the prospect of any further career advancement unlikely, many see this as the perfect time to start their own business.

Now ideally, if you’re going to start a business, you should start 2-3 years before you plan on retiring. This will give you a chance to become established, build your network and income stream all while maintaining the benefits of your current job.

But even if you didn’t start early, you can still become a successful entrepreneur, in fact, studies show that older entrepreneurs are generally more successful than their younger counterparts.

So don’t think that your too old to start something, many successful entrepreneurs started businesses later in life. People like Ray Kroc (McDonald’s), Harland “Colonel” Sanders (Kentucky Fried Chicken), Walt Disney, Charles Flint (IBM) and many more. The only person telling you that you can’t do it is you.

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It’s never too late to start your business! Here’s the proof.

8. Consider becoming a consultant

If you don’t feel the bite of the entrepreneur bug, but still want to stay connected and earn money. How about becoming a consultant?

After 30+ years working in an industry, you’ve built up a world of knowledge, contacts and experience. All of which is useful and has value.

Doing consulting work allows you to have control over your schedule and, once you are established, it can provide a significant source of income.

9. Get a part-time job for more than just the money

Both entrepreneurship and consulting can take a lot of time and effort, but picking the right part time job can cut your expenses and give you a little spending money.

What are your hobbies? Do you like to golf? Become a marshal on your local golf course. Most courses will pay you a modest hourly rate and let you golf for free.

How about gardening? A part time job at your local nursery will not only provide you with pocket money, but also a discount on plants.

Whatever your hobbies or interests, there’s a part time job out there for you.

Conclusion

Whether you are changing careers, starting a business or retiring, big life changes are by their very nature stressful.

The great thing about being older is that we have the advantage of experience. We’ve been though other life changing events and can anticipate some of the issues we’ll face.

Becoming well informed, getting prepared and making a plan will insure that you can change your life at 60 years old and feel proud of yourself.

Featured photo credit: Ian Schneider via unsplash.com

Reference

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