Passion is contagious. It sparks energy, optimism, and hope. YOU set the tone. People watch you. They pay attention to what you say. They also pay attention to what you don’t say. They see how you respond to people, what you speak up about, and what you choose not to speak about. They pick up on your body language. They feel your energy.
You are the leaders, educators, and helpers. You motivate and inspire people to learn something, to meet a goal, to behave a certain way, or to change something.
You are the heroes, the brave ones, the bold ones.
YOU set the tone. People watch you. They pay attention to what you say. They also pay attention to what you don’t say. They see how you respond to people, what you speak up about, and what you choose not to speak about. They pick up on your body language. They feel your energy.
If you ever wonder why people respond to you the way you do, I guarantee it has a lot to do with your level of passion, or lack there of.
Passion is contagious. It sparks energy, optimism, and hope.
However, let’s be real, maintaining a high level of passion and energy for what you do can be exhausting. That is why the PASSION I am speaking about requires a strategic focus, to avoid cynicism, sarcasm, pessimism, and an ambivalent attitude.
The one response, I’m sure to get from participants after they hear me speak at a speaking engagement, workshop or when they interact with me, is “you sure are passionate,” or “where do you get your energy and passion from?” But, trust me, if you could have a private conversation with the person I’m around the most, my husband, of 22 years, he’d likely say “oh, yes, Diana has PASSION as she’ll tell me how she feels, but not always in a positive way.” (insert blank stare).
So, I created an acronym for PASSION, perhaps it can help you. PASSION is something I must practice, every single day, in my work, but especially where it can be most challenging, and that’s in my personal relationships, with my husband, and my kids.
If there’s one person who needs to practice this PASSION acronym, it’s me.
This is not some fable or fairy tale talk here. PASSION is backed up in positive psychology, emotional intelligence and of course, by the queen herself, Brene Brown, who Dares Us to Lead, as she speaks about the power of vulnerability and empathy.
I promise you, if you practice my PASSION acronym steps, you will radically change your life, and in return, continue to inspire, motivate, and change those you lead, and you’ll have deeper, more meaningful relationships.
When you interact with others, positive and negative emotions will fire. When you feel your emotions rising, in a negative way, TRY first to:
PASS on blurting out your initial reaction.
PASS on believing the first thing that pops into your head, it’s likely a recycled story.
PASS on angrily walking away to stew on your negative thoughts (this is a tough one).
Instead, try this:
PAUSE – The P in Passion stands for PAUSE:
Right when you feel your heart racing, take a deep breathe, in through your nose and out through your nose. This simple process slows your heart rate down, and triggers your brain to believe that “all is okay.” Pause. Take a sip of water. Turn your head, for a moment and refocus your eyes on something, doesn’t matter what, even a dot on the wall, to help your mind regenerate itself so it doesn’t move into the “flight or fight”response. Continue to breathe.
Here’s one thing I can guarantee: Your FIRST response will be an emotional one and, nine times out of ten, one you will regret. So, pause. Whatever you do – WALK … AWAY … from social media and don’t press send, ON ANYTHING.
ASSESS – The A in Passion stands for ASSESS:
Now that you’ve paused a bit, check in with your thoughts. What story are you telling yourself? Is it a limiting belief that keeps spiraling in your head? Are you attaching this incident to other incidents of your past? Breathe. Assess.
SPACE – The S in Passion stands for SPACE:
Let there be silence. Most of us are not good with the space that brings silence. We feel we need to fill in the silence. Don’t speak. This is where the learning and wisdom comes in. Let your mind process the thousands of thoughts that are going on. Space allows you to be in the present moment, to BREATHE and see yourself where you are. Space could mean, you need a few seconds, minutes, hours or two, or perhaps you need to sleep on it. Just allow the space to be!
SPEAK – The S in Passion stands for SPEAK
After your pause, assess and get some space, NOW speak. Share your thoughts. Perhaps you’re ready to share how your feel, or you could PASS and say “May I have some time to share my thoughts with you tomorrow.” Whatever you do, say something. Then, PROMISE the person, and yourself, that you will follow-up the next day or soon thereafter. If you need support, bring someone with you. Just speak.
I guarantee you, when you PASS – pause, assess, get some space and then speak, you gain:
INSIGHT – the I in PASSION stands for INSIGHT:
You gain insight about yourself, and what you are holding on to, and about others and what they me be experiencing, which leads to empathy as you become more open.
OPEN – The O in Passion stands for OPEN:
You become more open, flexible and receptive to new ideas. You crush your biases as you obliterate the programs in your mind. As a result, you gain knowledge.
KNOWLEDGE – The N (we all know the k is silent) stands for kNOWLEDGE:
You become wiser, smarter and more emotionally intelligent when you practice PASSION.
Remember this PASSION acronym. Memorize it. Stick it to your mirror, on your steering wheel. Heck, tattoo it to the inside of your wrist. Repeat. Repeat. Repeat.
Book me to speak are your next school or your organization event about PASSION. I guarantee you will not be disappointed. I’ve also designed a workshop with the same name.
I look forward to working with you as we all work to put our PASSION into ACTION.