What I Wish I Knew: Passion

This post is part of the “What I Wish I Knew” series being hosted by Ashley at Your Super Awesome Life- a new site dedicated to helping teen girls live a life that they love. Ashley has rounded up an inspiring ground of women is asking us what we wish we knew about all different parts of life when we were teenagers, and I’m excited to be sharing a post about passion.

I remember people telling me to find my passion when I was a teenager, usually in a career searching sense, but when I was a teenager I had very little interest in what I’d be doing when I wasn’t in high school. I had important things to worry about, like how impossible it was to get a boyfriend while going to an all girls school.

Eventually, with the help of some amazing teachers I discovered that my passions were in organizing people & projects, creative problem solving and design. In high school those things intersected in theatre, and I started working as a stage manager on every project that came my way. Now those things come together in my work at Freckled Nest Design, but even three years ago I had trouble imagining what the things I love really added up to. What I see now is that my passion for the things I love has led me to live a life I adore, and I think that’s possible for almost anyone who wants that for themselves too.

Pay attention to what you love to do- and remember that it’s the doing that’s important. Invest time in the things that you love being immersed in, and the things that you can’t stop thinking about. Learn as much as you can about the things you love so you can test how deep your interests run, and look for clues around you. You passions might be bright and shiny, or a skill that you invest incredible time into, but they can also be small and unassuming constants that you keep coming back to like cooking or, for me, blogging. You have to spend your life doing something, so why not hone in and find some things that you can’t get enough of?

It all fits together eventually. Sometimes the things that you love don’t fit into what the people around you are doing, or the things that you can’t get enough of are scattered and don’t seem to add up. Don’t worry, they don’t have to. The interests and hobbies that you invest in give you skills and resources that are infinitely flexible and portable. You don’t know where life will take you, who you’ll meet along the way or who your next great teacher will be, so be indiscriminate about nurturing the things that make you happy. Trust that they’ll make sense eventually, and they’ll buoy you in the future.

Passion makes you irreplaceable. Being around someone who genuinely believes in and loves what they’re doing is addictive, and it also can’t be taught. People want to be around it, and employers want to hire people with it. Passion always stands out in a crowd, and it will give you the motivation and drive to get through the in-betweens in life that are difficult to navigate. Passion can only be accessed by you, and it will carry you forward to places you can’t imagine.

So what’s stopping you? Get out there & play :)

What do you wish you knew when you were a teenager?

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There are 13 responses already, join in!
  1. So beautifully said, Kyla. I would’ve wanted myself to know you can always change your path. Don’t feel locked into anything and stress out about not knowing what you’re one thing is. Try stuff. Take risks. If you hate it, try something else. Life isn’t a line, it’s more like a circle; learning and growing in each turn.
    Catherine Denton

  2. I love this, and I so wish someone had sat me down and told me this when I was in high school. Great post!

  3. I wish I would have known that nursing was a great alternative. I went to college to be a doctor, then later went to nursing school. i could have starting nursing at 22 instead of 26. I am completely in love with my career choice!

  4. Kim

    I found your blog recently, and it has been such an inspiration. I was diagnosed with GAD a few years back but only recently have I started the recovery process. It’s so nice to read your posts about anxiety, and even the ones that don’t mention it are such a testament to living a full life with GAD. I started my own Etsy store recently (an anxiety inducing act in and of itself), but I am so excited to see where it goes!
    So, thank you for your inspiration. You have a beautiful blog and voice!

  5. One thing that I would have loved to have known in highschool would be that I shouldn’t let others make the big decisions for me. I felt a lot of pressure from friends, family and my teachers that I “had” to go to university right after graduating. So I did what everyone thought I should do even when my heart wasn’t into it. It was not the right timing then. Now though several years later I have made the decision to pursue a different degree, but this time it’s on my terms and feels great. Trust your gut, and don’t do something just because others think you should.

  6. Honestly, I wish I would have known that “it gets better”. My teenage years were really tumultuous. I was the brainy band geek who excelled in speech and drama – in a sea of small town kids who were so good at sports. My mom kept telling me that it gets better and I’d find great friends in college (I had fair weather friends in high school), and it’d be cool to be smart. Well, she was right. I didn’t believe her of course because I already knew everything there was to know back then. ;)

    Great post! It even resonated with a 31 year old! ;)

  7. i really enjoy reading your posts, they are so inspirational. thanks for your insight and passion.

  8. “It all fits together eventually.” Yes, yes, it does. And it can take a while, but it happens. I’m only now discovering how I can piece my interests together and bring them into what I love the most. It took time, I’m in my mid 20s, but that doesn’t matter because along the way you’ve gained other skills and experience that adds even more.

    As a teenager I wish I had appreciated more that I could write. While I don’t and will never regret focusing on music because it is my ultimate passion (just a lot harder to make a life of!), I do wish I’d spent time on other things too. But I’m doing it now, and that’s what matters.

  9. Oh girl… your words are just what I needed today. Thanks.

  10. [...] Kyla Roma on what she wishes she had known about finding/following her passion. [...]

  11. [...] Roma divulged “What I Wish I Knew: Passion.” From the post: Passion makes you irreplaceable. Being around someone who genuinely believes [...]

  12. I like the optimism in the sentence “it all fits together eventually” – makes a construction consulting, greeting card making, party planning, engineer feel a little better about life.

    As for what I wish I knew as a teenager. Don’t be afraid to follow your heart and go into design – no matter what your mother says…

  13. [...] Roma divulged “What I Wish I Knew: Passion.” From the post: Passion makes you irreplaceable. Being around someone who genuinely believes [...]

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