Having A Passion is Overrated


Nazli Nazemian, Journalist

“So what are you passionate about?”
For as long as I can remember I have avoided this infamous question -or lied my way out of an actual answer- reason being I simply don’t know the answer. From a very young age children are conditioned to find that “one thing” that they are intensely interested in; a hobby that they are expected to spend a significant amount of time doing and what eventually becomes a part of their identity. There are a number of things that I could say I’m passionate about: quoting How I Met Your Mother, playing the piano, coffee. However, none of these answers can uphold the weight of the question; quoting HIMYM is not really the driving force behind all of my life’s decisions. Did I know what my calling was at 5? Absolutely not. Do I know it now as a high school senior? Maybe I should, but I do not. But that’s okay. In fact, it is more than okay. As fellow CdM senior Emily Goodwin puts it “No one knows what they’re going to do in 30 years. If they do, they are probably lying.”
After watching Grey’s Anatomy, I claimed science as my passion, typical I know, I was so happy that I finally had a “passion”. So much so that I selectively ignored just how boring I actually found the subject and how much trouble I had understanding it. After taking all the chemistry courses that our school could offer I realized how much I dread the sciences. So that was the end of that: science is not my passion.
It is not often that a teenager knows what they want to do in life. In fact, many adults go on yoga retreats just to find the answer to the question of “what’s my purpose in life?” I think it is possible to have a purposeful life without a passion. Yes, coffee is not my passion but it makes my mornings more enjoyable; playing the piano is not my life’s calling, but it cheers me up when I am sad. And lastly, I cannot make a career out of quoting How I Met Your Mother, but I’m sure whatever path I’ll take in life it would be Legen-wait for it-dary. Moral of the story is that uncertainty is scary, and uncertainty about something as important as your direction in life is even scarier, but I think it’s okay not to know where you’re going. What matters is that you live in a way that’s important to you.