“Is your passion creating clarity, focus and purpose, or is it blinding you from seeing the reality of your current situation?”
Dandy question by Mike Myatt, a well-known leadership writer.
I was once enmeshed in the idea of being the best manager in a local clothing store chain. My passion was for accomplishment and recognition by my superiors. To that end, I was willing to learn and work long and hard. My bosses loved me.
Not so much, my colleagues and those who I supervised. My relentless focus on constantly increasing sales and blind adherence to company policy made me an insensitive leader and poor steward of the people and resources for which I was responsible. Realistic discussions about workplace issues were brushed aside with blunt “Whatever it takes ~ no excuses” statements.
In short, I was a “Pain-in-the- You Know What” . . . fortunately, I did not enjoy the resulting social isolation and this period did not last long.
We are often told that successful people feel passion for what they do and
I believe this to be true. Success requires a vision, hard work, and
persistence . . . hard to achieve without a “fire in the belly“.
However, Mike rightfully reminds us that passion has a dark side. If you have ever experienced someone whose drive toward a goal went off the deep end, you know that negative consequences can easily arise.
People with passion work tirelessly toward goals, do not let resistance stop them, and can inspire others who follow them.
They can also be oblivious to the needs of others, single-minded in their pursuit of a goal, and unpleasant to work with.
Either way, passion generates power and energy. Our challenge is to use that power and energy in ways that accomplish positive goals and promote well-being for ourselves and others. Not always easy things to do.
What’s the passion in your life?
How are you using the power from that passion?
Feeling the passionate burn in my life in the Heartland . . .