What Prevents You from Fulfilling Your Passion

You know you have the talent, and within you lies the desire to hone and use that gift. Yet, after many years of living in a world where both opportunities and obstacles abound, you wonder, “Why the heck do I feel miserable of just being satisfied seeing myself doing what I love to do best in my DREAMS?” Yes, only in your dreams and never in reality!

What a sad fate you have fallen into, you might say. So why are you trapped in this condition? Your response to this question would probably something that blames every bit of external factors but never your own very self. You cannot accomplish the desire of your heart, the one that can make you happy and content, because there are those that forestall your effort from achieving such state.

Steve Jobs' Epitaph

One of my favorite inspirational speeches was spoken by the Apple-Macintosh technology stalwart, the late Steve Jobs. Here is an excerpt from that speech which really struck me the most...
And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven't found it yet, keep looking. Don't settle.
I bet you might have heard a lot of motivating words like the one above, quotes saying that doing the work you love will make you content and fulfilling your life's passion will gratify your dreamy heart. Guess what, after hearing and reading all those honeycombed words, your ambition is nowhere near your reach.

My article is not to discourage you further, even though your past and present seem to make the future look bleak (which I think it should not be and it is not really that bad, you know). What I intend in this article is to provide the reasons, the primary ones I suppose, that prevent you from fulfilling your passion and which is making your life miserable, or so it seems.

By knowing these reasons, you can understand where they are coming from. Maybe (at least maybe) you can cut the source and finally defeat those that have become hindrances to achieving your aspiration.

Scroll down and read.

1. Need for mammon

Remember the scene from the Bible when Jesus said, “You cannot serve both God and mammon”? The word mammon here refers to money. In fact, in Christian literature, there is a demon associated with Greed – the deadly sin that directly connects with the obscene love of money. He is named as Mammon.

J. Jonah Jamieson
J. Jonah Jamieson,
Peter Parker's Boss
Of course, you would defend that you are not greedy and there is no way you love money because you are avariciously materialistic and consumerist. You just need some pennies to pay for the rent and all the bills that are piling up on the table. So instead of pursuing your life long dream and sharpening that hidden talent in the closet, you work in a job that you do not love but has the capability to sustain your bank account, provide a crumb of bread with a piece of butter on the diner, and keep your mortgage to a minimum level.

You are like the young Peter Parker who, albeit he is the Amazing Spider-Man, is struggling to pay for the tuition of his college education and help his Aunt May with the daily expenses of living in urban New York. So he endures working as a part-time photojournalist for a sensationalized news oriented tabloid with an overbearing and unfair editor-in-chief.

Your need to earn a decent amount of money just to keep up with life is clogging you from your passion. Has it ever occurred to you that the pursuit of happiness is not really about money per se? Allow me to quote the entire passage of Jesus when he taught about worldly riches.
No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon.
Matthew 6:24

2. Traumatic experience

You were at the prime of your ballet training. Everyone of your classmates in the ballet class admired how you exceeded them with your talent. Your instructors have commended you and predicted a future of you being a prima ballerina. As matter of fact, you saw that future on yourself as well.

And then, at the awaited recital, all the town's top brass and all your relatives were there to witness how a budding prima ballerina would awe a crowd hungry for an artistic performance. In just one wrong step of a toe, you rolled over ridiculously causing you to grasp your skirt and accidentally tearing the garter that held it to your waist. Now, your skirt fell down leaving your pelvic area uncovered. With a slip of a foot, you fell at your face on the wooden stage, and then BLAG! It did not take a minute for the audience to blurt out their reactionary giggles. Humiliation was a stranger to you until this moment. Tears dropped from your eyes and, from then on, you said to yourself, “No more dancing and no more performing on stage!”

Experiences that traumatized your memory like the one above can indeed cause you to be disheartened. How you would wish to forget about it and erase it from your head, right? Yet no, it remains as a lingering narrative in your consciousness over and over again and it has become the villainous nightmare tormenting your dream.

Maybe you want to be a classical musician, a popular composer, or a prolific story writer. Maybe there is this childhood dream of yours but you keep it buried at the bottom of your cortex. Why? It is because of a particular event in the past – an embarrassing scold from a teacher, a hateful criticism, or a shaming ridicule from a crowd – it might not be just a single event but a series of occurrences that are putting you down. Whatever it is (or they are), it is intrinsically forbidding you from following your dreams.

Healing is the key. It may require time; it may even involve some help from a friend or loved one. I would rather seek it rather than let the wound get infected and turn into something worse.

3. Dispiriting models

If number 2 on this list is about events in your life, item number 3 is about people. I guess you will agree with me that there are people who, may not be ill-intentioned, but tend to be discouraging agents instead of encouraging supporters.

Parents, teachers, older siblings, and trusted people whom you think have moral ascendancy, more often than not, want only what is good for you (there are few who could be exceptions, though). Since you treat them with utmost respect and by chance you listen to their words as advice from Angels, you may deny it or not, but they do have a certain amount of influence on the way you think and decide on what to do or not to do.

Here is the thing, there are not a few people whom I have heard telling me that they did not take a tertiary degree they liked just because an influential elder person pushed him/her to take another course. This kind of decision is now haunting them even in their sleep.

Did you want to go to Music Conservatory or take a bachelor's degree in Fine Arts because you have the knack for painting and sculpting? Yet, Mom and Pop advised you to take a Welder's Course because they opined that its tuition was cheaper and the job market was lucrative once you graduate.

J.K. Rowling
J.K. Rowling, Author of
the Harry Potter Book Series
Maybe your community or church was offering a scholarship grant for a Creative Writing degree, and you always wished this chance to come by your way. However, the lovely teacher, Mrs. Jane Doe from your English literature class, told you that your writing sucked and by no means could you become the next J.K. Rowling. That comment became your defining moment and you decided to be a gardener and the town's favorite lawnmower man or woman.

Geesh! Get over it, dear Reader. They may be the most influential people in your life and you certainly look up to them, but in no way should they prevent you from being the man or woman your destiny has in store for you. By nature's course, they will die ahead of you and you will be left roaming the world without them. Go and seek your heart out! You can still love them even if you go against their own mere opinions.

4. Mañana habit

In Filipino culture, procrastination is a vice so prevalent yet is viewed to be destructive it requires a distinct phrase to describe it. Doing it can get you a scolding from any grandnanny in the neighborhood with the unscrupulous intention of pulling you up from your sluggish ways. It is called the “Mañana habit.

Mañana is a Spanish word that is translated as morning, tomorrow, or later. In this sense, the latter 2 renderings are preferable. You can use this word as a retort to someone asking you to do a chore if you are feeling lethargic.

You may all have the conditions to train and develop yourself so you can attain your ambition. The opportunity is now a finger's reach, yet there is this something inside your flesh that makes putting it off to a later time seem enjoyable. In this case, I recommend that you read my article on why laziness and procrastination are temptingly fun and entertaining.

Sloth is the soul's enemy that breaks any great opportunity.

5. Angel with the scythe

Both ancient and pop mythologies have recognized the hooded creature wielding a long scythe as the Angel of Death. Her image has been universally accepted as the symbol of famine, sickness, and death. You would see her in visual artworks displayed in history museums all over the globe.

Lady Death
If there is one final and strongest obstacle to fulfilling your passion, it is sickness and death – and when I say sickness, it is the one that is terminal and will eventually lead to death. Obviously, death is not just the end of your life but the end of your dreams as well. The previous 4 items in this list can be defeated by an act of choice, determination, and decision, but this 5th and last one is a passion ender even the greatest and most passionate men and women were not able to avoid. With death, it ends right just that.

The only one who loves and adores Death that I know of is the Marvel Comics villain named Thanos. In the Marvel Universe, Death (albeit an infinity) is depicted as a beautiful woman who only turns her face into a skull at the spur of a moment. In some comic releases, another Marvel character named Deadpool is shown to be proposing to and marrying Death.

Even if Death's humanly appearance is stunningly attractive, you need not wait for her to come to you before you actually fulfill your passion in order to impress her. Because once she comes, she will be wielding her scythe and she will relentlessly strike you with it. Your life on earth will be a thing of the past.

As a final treat, here is the video of Steve Job's speech at the Stanford University graduation ceremony in 2005.

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  1. ive never commented on a blog post or article or whatever in my life but this was super dope thanks

  2. That was a good and inspiring reading. Thanks for the info!


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