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Passion, Hobby OR ‘That Other Thing’?

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Just to be clear let’s start with working definitions first; you will thank me later.

a) Passion – is a feeling of intense enthusiasm towards or compelling desire for someone or something. Passion can range from eager interest in or admiration for an idea, proposal, or cause; to enthusiastic enjoyment of an interest or activity; to strong attraction, excitement, or emotion towards a person.

b) Passion – is a strong desire that can get you to do amazing things. Passion is an emotion to be acted upon. Without action, passion yields no worthwhile results… When you have passion for something, you love it even when you hate it.

Keyword on the working definition is Something NOT Someone. When most of us think of the word Passion, we think of love, desire, and romance. Well, I am glad we have cleared the air, now let us move on to today’s business.

What would happen if parents start supporting their kids’ passion that they generally term, ‘part-time’or ‘hobby’? I am not a parent yet, but hey a little support towards your children means a lot to them. I get it, we all have dreams and all that, but let your dreams be a guide towards building your child’s future; let it not dictate who or what they grow up to be.

I understand in the 80s being a doctor was the ‘it’ thing and still is to some, but there is more to life than just our professional jobs. Do not get me wrong, I do respect every profession as saves a different purpose in our society.

It is great to study hard and become a graduate, those are goals, but what about your passion; that other thing that keeps you sane when your professional job is giving you a hustle? What about that talent that God gave you they constantly term a ‘hobby’ when they want to make you feel bad about pursuing it? What about that dream they say ‘hambo zama khona phela bhudi’ when you have failed at school.

Does it really have to be referred to as ‘that other thing’? What if your academia and passion coexist? How about you get your degree in whatever field of study you choose, be it nursing, public policy, geography, mathematics or psychology and still pursue your passion, be it tennis, singing, dancing, swimming, acting, visual arts, being a disk jockey, model, designer or producer; the list is endless.

Who said you can’t do both? I am sorry for the million questions but I’m really concerned about this society which appoints judges who dictate what is proper and what is not.

We find comfort, peace and relaxation in different ways. We all have that go-to person when we need to talk but have we ever thought about our passion as our go-to thing when we need to de-stress. It is readily available to us; it just needs motivation and support from those we seek approval from.

Okay wait, let’s talk about depression. I’m no master in that, but according to Google here are a few working definitions;

(a) A mental health disorder characterized by persistently depressed mood or loss of interest in activities, causing significant impairment in daily life

(b) Depression is a mood disorder that causes a persistent feeling of sadness and loss of interest. Also called major depressive disorder or clinical depression, it affects how you feel, think and behave and can lead to a variety of emotional and physical problems.

So in this instance what if your passion keeps you sane, in-check and reduces depression? Ever thought of that? I doubt. Well isn’t they say depression is not for Africans, but oh well we are losing most of our loved ones cause to it.

Anyway back to our matter, depression is a topic for another day. The reason why I raised the issue of depression is to act as the devil’s advocate on the role of our passions curbing it. We have guardians and a society that feels as if our talents and passions are a side thing; a ‘side dish’ kind of business not realizing some people love it and it’s the only way they communicate and express their pain.

I will use myself as an example. I love the stage, yes I am a thespian. I didn’t study theatre at school, I studied something different and to make matters worse I went on to do a Masters in Public policy and Development management; it has nothing to do with the stage. However, guess what, I still find time for the stage, I still find time for rehearsals, and I still find time for theatre.

Do you know why I do it? Why do I keep doing it? Why it? Well, it completes me. That is enough for me. It’s not the ‘other’ thing, it’s the ‘it’ thing. Do you have an idea of how many people feel the way I do about their passion? Why not try to support them. This world would be a better place.

I love what I do and I appreciate it. It is my road to self-discovery. I discovered my passion and I owned it. I believed in it to the extent that I even convinced my family to see things the way I do.

Thank you to the Most High they have been an amazing support base. They never miss any of my performances. Do you know what that does to me? Do you have an idea of how it makes me feel? Well, in short, it makes me believe in what I do, it reassures me that I am doing something right with my life.

Your academics and your career are important but your passion is also important. Has it ever clicked in your mind that the other thing (passion) is now being offered as degrees, diplomas etc.

This makes your passion an academic venture; I am just saying.
Food for thought:
The world is beautiful. Want to know why? It’s the combination of all these amazing and effortless passions that keep the world colorful.

Keep on writing, painting, making music, drawing, swimming, acting, dancing, singing, designing and all the passions of the world you can think of. As long as it makes you happy then that’s a good enough reason. There is no ‘other thing’, it’s the ‘it thing’.