Happy Tuesday! As The World Messenger (which by the way is the title of my new book) I’ve virtually traveled the world over the past month.
From Denmark, Switzerland, Sweden, UK, Italy, Germany, Slovakia, Spain, Croatia and Serbia to Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, Kenya, Columbia, Argentina, Canada and back to my home in the US, I’ve been reflecting on dozens of astonishing conversations with some of the most fascinating and accomplished people in business and professional sports. I also got to flex my language muscles, hear the most appealing accents… and laugh at some things that were literally lost in translation. (Skype, you Rock!)
While every conversation was unique and joyous, I found that they all shared a common thread: Abundant and endless passion.
Why Passion? Everything we do requires a particular level of energy. If we work on self-discovery and exploration (remember the good old days when we were kids) we quickly learn what we are passionate about. And if we end up doing what we care about the most, it’s no longer work.
Passion is energy. Feel the power that comes from focusing on what excites you.” ~ Oprah Winfrey
This endless excitement is not just engaging, it is infectious. It spreads faster than anything else that can kill you. Trust me, I know this from personal experience.
1. Be Adventurous! Have you ever read the book or seen the movie based on the adventures of Robinson Crusoe ? I was just a kid but I was drawn to the story of this character that lived almost every day dealing with fear, uncertainty, danger and the unknown…all the while, living life as an adventure.
Spoiler alert, he “escaped” the island after 28 years, two months and 19 days. The crazy part was that left not as a prisoner getting sprung from jail, but as an adventurer that embraced life.
The very basic core of a man’s living spirit is his passion for adventure.” ~ Christopher McCandless
Now I’m not suggesting we need to be that extreme. However, on any journey, the unexpected should be expected…and embraced. You will be amazed what and who comes along. You just need to raise your game a little higher every day.
2. Utilizing Creativity – You are born with it! So if you think you lost your creativity — look around. You’ll find it! (I promise 😉
Passion is one great force that unlashes creativity, because if you are passionate about something, then you are more willing to take a risk.” ~ Yo-Yo Ma
3. Re-Defining Purpose – Be Greater than Yourself! I love leaders who pursue goals that extend beyond their own self-interest! A great role model of mine does this and much more: Nancy Hoshead-Marker.
If you don’t know her, Nancy was a competitive swimmer who represented the United States at the 1984 Summer Olympics. She won three gold medals and one silver in medley and freestyle swimming! But she didn’t stop there. She has also enjoyed an extraordinary career as an attorney and law professor.
Today, Nancy is the CEO of Champion Women. Her mission? “To aggressively advocate for equality, accountability, and transparency by these institutions with an underlying philosophy that sports opportunities are vehicles to improve the lives of girls and women”.
The discipline and passion of becoming an Olympic athlete did not stop when Nancy stopped swimming for her country. She just re-defined her purpose. Not bad, huh?
4. Succeeding – It is a result of your passion! Think about every time you were successful, regardless how big or small “the win” might have been.
“ You were born to be a player. You were meant to be here. This moment is yours. ” ~ Herb Brooks, U.S.A men ’ s ice hockey coach
Long before the games in Salt Lake, Herb was the coach and inspiration behind many successful world champion and Olympic teams since 1954! But he will always be remembered for that one game on that one day in that one place.
Think of what are you were you born to do? Are you doing that?
5. Endless giving and receiving! I believe we must always take a time to take nurture and care for ourselves and our immediate family, friends, coaches, mentors, and peers. I would also suggest that there is an outer circle of people that we have not yet met. That by stepping beyond our inner circle and our comfort zone, we give ourselves the opportunity to meet extraordinary people that can enhance our personal and professional lives in ways we cannot imagine today. And we can and should always do the same for them.
A friend (Tom Cotner) recently shared a quote from one of his mentors: “We’re all just walking each other home”. Indeed we are…
You can do anything as long you have the passion, the drive, the focus, and the support.” ~ Sabrina Bryan
6. Team-Playing – What to do with all of that passion? Share it by embracing everyone around you. You’ve no doubt heard about the Butterfly Effect. About how the flutter of a butterfly’s wings in one part of the world can create a hurricane in another part of the world. Well…Go ahead. Be a butterfly.
“Life is short, youth is finite, and opportunities endless. Have you found the intersection of your passion and the potential for world-shaping positive impact? If you don’t have a great idea of your own, there are plenty of great teams that need you – unknown startups and established teams in giant companies alike.” ~ Justin Rosenstein
7. Thrive – Despite the rise and fall of our life’s adventures. Even during the darkest moments, your class, style and poise can influence and impact you and those around you more than you may ever imagine. Tap into your ability to maintain an unrelenting focus on the future (the sunshine always comes after the rain) and the unwavering determination to make the needed, difficult and innovative changes that can transform you — and your team’s — lives.
“My mission in life is not merely to survive, but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humor, and some style.” ~ Maya Angelou
Leave a Legacy – A Legacy that matters! Be a Legend – In Your Own Legendary Way!
Please share your thoughts, ideas, inspirations, challenges, and solutions – I read and respond to all of your comments.
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Izabela Lundberg (@IzabelaLundberg) is an Executive Leadership Consultant, Coach & Speaker for Fortune 500 & Professional Athletes. Drawing on her extensive global business, diversity and high impact performance experience working with people in over 80 countries, Izabela also writes and speaks on topics such us Legacy Leadership, Strategic Leadership & Influence & #HighImpactPerformance.