What does it mean to be passionate?

A while back I wrote an article on my company blog about passion. It was a general article about the passion I have for Creospace broken down into a few sections with a few lines about each.

Someone suggested that I write an article about each section and expand on my thoughts so that’s exactly what I’m going to do. But before I start I thought it might be a good exercise to look at passion and what it means to be passionate.

The dictionary says: PASSION: a strong or extravagant fondness, enthusiasm, or desire for anything: a passion for music.

An article on wikipedia says this: Passion ( from Latin verb patior meaning to suffer or to endure) is an emotion applied to a very strong feeling about a person or thing. Passion is an intense emotion compelling feeling, enthusiasm, or desire for something.

I think linking love & passion together is interesting. I’m quite sure that you can love something without being passionate about it, or at least in today’s society you can. It’s common to hear people saying they love their dress or they ‘love a macdonalds’ for instance. I don’t believe those people are passionate about their dress or their big mac!

Passion as an emotion
Also If as is suggested by wikipedia that passion is an emotion, I’m not sure I agree with that. You never hear people saying about others that they are too passionate but people can be heard saying that someone is too angry or too sad. It’s certainly got emotion in it but I don’t think it’s an emotion itself.

It’s very very difficult to accuse someone of being over passionate.  In contrast to above you never hear people saying “he’s just too passionate for his own good” or “I really wish she would knock off the passion” do you? Well at least I’ve never heard anyone say it.

Admiration for passion
How many times have you heard people talking about others and saying “I so admire his passion” or “she’s so passionate about what she does” ? I’ve heard it loads and I really think those people that are saying it as well as admiring the person they speak of they are maybe jealous or wish they had some of that passion as well.

They definitely are saying that to have passion or be passionate is a really good thing. They aren’t negative criticisms, or at least I don’t think they are. Passion is admirable without a doubt.

For me passion is something that both comes from and also when expressed connects to my soul and gives a real deep connection with that that I am passionate about. It is something that is part of me and not something that comes from simply doing well.

In the coming weeks I hope to publish a series of short articles regarding passion and specifically looking at the following subjects:

  • Passion for the brands I’m responsible for
  • Passion for great customer service
  • Passion for people
  • Passion for working with great people
  • Passion for delivering great solutions
  • Passion for ridding a profession of bad workmanship
  • Passion for giving professional & informative advice

Here’s a challenge to leave with you: Be passionate in everything you do and communicate it with unbridled enthusiasm. Easy yeah?

What things are you passionate about? What do you think about passion? Please do leave a comment and join in the conversation.

Gary

I love: Norfolk | Food | Cooking | Community | Speaking | Marketing | My Wife x | Great customer service & engagement | Running a business (or 2) | Humour

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4 Comments

  1. The site’s looking nice.

    I think you’ve had quite a revamp since I last visited.

    Hope you are well, bud!

    J

  2. Hi Gary
    Interesting blog – though I disagree with your statement that: “You never hear people saying about others that they are too passionate.”

    I have heard it said plenty of times – (often as a point of criticism or as an excuse for extreme behaviour). Seem to recall Eric Cantona and Paul McEnroe being described as too passionate by various commentators – and teachers often apply it to children (as a euphemism for temperamental).

    Passion is a wonderful thing but it is also (like anger) one of the most powerful and the most dangerous of the emotions. It’s the all consuming fire at the heart of many tragedies, the driven’s fuel, the artist’s muse, the zealot’s mission – and for that reason it sometimes needs to be controlled, channeled, tamed to be useful. Otherwise, like the Yangtze bursting its banks, it can sweep all before it and leave devastation in its wake.

    Best wishes
    H
    PS: Google “too passionate” to see that it is a widely used expression – particularly in the sporting world.

    • Thanks Huw, great comment. The line is fuzzy between passion and anger at times, McEnroe being an excellent example. Your comment would make a great concluding post to this series to warn people of the flip side of things. I’d thought of passion like salt in cooking; too little and there’s no taste, too much and it’s ruined.

  3. Hi Gary – quite agree it is a very fuzzy line between passion and anger – in fact sometimes passion feels like a potent mixture of desire and anger (though the desire is directed out whereas the anger is often directed in – as when people berate themselves for their shortcomings).

    I also think your salt analogy is spot-on. For instance, there are some actors who are at times too passionate for a particular role, they blow it away along with the rest of the cast – a good director knows how to control and focus that passion so that the intensity is maintained across the performance (essential if you are playing King Lear).

    H
    PS: Use these comments as and when you want.

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