Life Tips

Five questions to discover your true passion

man and sunset

How to find your passion in life? Simple, by asking the right questions. Waren Berger, American journalist and author of the book “A More Beautiful Question”, is convinced of this. In the essay, the writer interviews designers, entrepreneurs and thinkers, to whom he asks which question has been decisive for their careers: «It is easy to walk on paths traced by others or by chance. On the other hand, it is more complex to understand what your heart desires» writes Berger on Fast Company.

Here are five questions to figure out what career and life you want.

1. What’s your tennis ball?

This is the question suggested by Drew Houston, founder of DropBox: «Successful people are obsessed with solving a problem. Something very close to their heart. They remind me of a dog chasing a tennis ball. To understand what you want from life, you must find your tennis ball, the thing that drives you to move the most,» suggests Houston.

2. What is one thing you believe in that none of your friends or family members agree on?

It was crucial to answer this question for Peter Thiel, the co-founder of PayPal. Answering this question is useful for two reasons: it helps you understand what you care about most, so much so that you can defend it against everything and everyone. And it helps you understand where your uniqueness lies: «Don’t always think you’re competing against someone. Don’t seek everyone’s approval. Aim for a niche: that’s where you can create value. After all, what’s easier? Going through a door that no one sees or banging your head against a wall?” Thiel asks.

3. Projecting yourself into the future, 20 or 30 years from now, what is the thing you most want to have accomplished?

Jeff Weiner, CEO of LinkedIn, often asks himself and his employees this question: «Most people don’t know how to answer this question. Yet it is crucial to do so to understand what your goals and hopes in life are,” explains Weiner.

4. What did you enjoy doing when you were ten years old?

Looking back to when you were a child helps you understand what you loved before others (parents, teachers, etc.) told you what to do. “The things you loved most as a child are probably what you love most today. For this, write a list of your favourite activities as a child and reflect on what place they occupy in your life today, “explains Eric Maisel, psychotherapist and author.

5. What do you want to do now?

One of the best ways to figure out your goals and passions is to experiment. “We spend too much time researching and planning to figure out the best path forward. The risk is never to act. We learn from practice, from the real experience, not from theory. We need to act to understand who we are,» underlines Herminia Barra, professor of INSEAD, an international business school.

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