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  • Writer's pictureLynn Armsby

Is Passion Overrated?

Updated: Jul 20, 2019

I worry about young people entering the world of dance, taking University degrees or dance training at one of our many wonderful training academies. How do they know it is right for them, or that they will fulfill their needs in life and in dance?

I remember telling my daughter when she finished school that if she thought dance was the only thing that could make her happy, that if it was her passion, she should take more study in dance and that we would financially support her. However, if she felt it was something that she would just quite like to do then she should do something else. She took a degree in Creative writing and later amongst her other ventures paradoxically became a dance teacher.

I have since read a lot about dance and passion and can’t say that I agree with too much of it. We are told that if we are doing a job which we are passionate about then we get up in the morning looking forward to the day and it doesn’t seem like work at all. Doing something you love for work however, changes fundamentally the way you think about it. Playing me a Rumba that touches my soul and giving me a dance partner who knows how to lead can make my heart sing. Tell me that I am going to have to rehearse that dance for days on end or stand on my feet for 10 hours a day teaching and my passion for the dance will undoubtedly wane.

I love dance. I recently saw some young dancers at a school where I was working and I had to turn away so they would not see the tears in my eyes as their performances were so real and expressive.

Could I honestly say it is my passion? Where does it fit into my list of needs? Certainly after family, happiness, the basic needs list of warmth, food and comfort and being wanted and needed. Did I pursue my passion relentlessly not able to do anything else or did I fall into it? Are those who seem unable to find a passion and get that dream job any worse off?

A lot of questions I know and I don’t profess to have the answers. Sorry. My best guess is that passion is on a spectrum and we all sit somewhere on the spectrum. I know some of you will be reading this and saying that you could not do anything else. You love dance, performing, teaching and creating. But maybe at times you lost your passion, when you were busy with life, children, sadness?

The best conclusion I can come to is that your passion (whatever it is for) will challenge, drive and motivate you. It will support you in bad times and enhance your life in good times. Don’t beat yourself up though if everyone else seems to have found theirs and you can’t identify yours. We may be passionate about different things at different times in our life or we may just live a life well lived, kind and compassionate to others.

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