As the founder of The Passion Co., I often get asked two questions: 1) Is your company a porn site? To this I say, “Not quite.” and 2) How do I find my passion? Which has a much longer answer.
I had been asking myself that same question until I was 27, often thinking that something was wrong with me, that I was the only one that didn’t have passions.
So I pursued the path that “made sense,” “paid the bills,” and eventually deemed me “successful.”
Until one day everything changed. I collapsed in my dorm-room, the first week of my MBA at Stanford, and considered taking my own life. I had worked so hard to get there, and along the way became a stranger to myself, never spending a moment alone or taking the time to connect with me.
Luckily, I got help, and the first exercise of connecting with myself was to write down a list of 20 activities and dreams that would make me happy. Writing was at the top of the list. I knew I needed to get back at it. For starters, I thought, instead of a book, why not a blog?
After brainstorming with friends, Passion Stories was born: a blog where I would share 100 stories of people who are following their passions.
What happened next was far from unexpected. I slacked for an entire year. And then I met Celeste, my coworker at Airbnb. She was a photographer on the side, and when I told her about my so called blog, she offered to do the photography. And just like that I had to get started. Celeste, without even knowing it, kept me accountable and supported me. We photographed the first interview with fashion technologist Alison Lewis.And within one week, we had 4 stories completed.
I tell you this story because of three things:
1) This fun blog on the side turned into doing what I love full time and running the company of my dreams. Did I know that would happen? Absolutely not.
2) I believed that I did not know what my passion is. Was that true? Absolutely not. I had the wrong definition of passion - and limited it to something that would make me rich from the get go.
3) Without the accountability and support from Celeste, I never would have started.
You see, the hardest part is getting started. And I have now received confirmation of this fact having taught over 5,000 people around the world. We have so much fear and doubt that we do not start. But once we start, and it could be doing anything that we truly care about, we change our lives.
Starting moves you out of fear and inertia, and into confidence and action. You break the cycle of doubt and enter the cycle of movement.
On October 23rd, starting will be easy and delightful for each one of you.
I am proud to announce start. It is the first conference dedicated to finding + hacking your passion. In just one weekend, you’ll be equipped with the skills to finally do what you love. Centered in the burgeoning Dogpatch neighborhood of San Francisco, our 3-day conference will feature inspiring speakers, 30+ engaging workshops and several hundred fellow passion-seekers.
Speakers include Airbnb executive and Joie de Vivre founder Chip Conley, Terry Romero from Kickstarter, and various Ted speakers like Jia Jiang (100 Days of Rejection) and Omid Scheybani.
This is the first ever conference dedicated to passion, the first ever conference that is action and community focused. Watch the video, grab your early bird ticket, tell your friends and most importantly say YES to a new beginning: to living the life that you choose.