Friday, January 11, 2013

Gardening in One Place: Dedicating to a Direction

Another thing to consider in strenuous living is that when you actually do make headway in developing a passion, how do you keep dedicated to a specific direction? However original the path may be, how do you keep yourself going further and further in one direction rather than getting tempted by so many paths that you're constantly restarting rather than building on top of achievements?

That is a difficult question indeed, for while strenuous living may have helped me identify the culinary arts as my ultimate passion, it hasn't been sufficient in telling me where to stick my efforts. I can imagine myself enjoying one of many things: Being an entrepreneur, selling gourmet foods online, writing books, owning a restaurant, and so forth. Strenuous living was sufficient to tell me that such is the range of choices I would most thoroughly enjoy in life, but it hasn't been enough to push me into one particular direction.

I confess I don't have any answers, but a little conjecture may be helpful. A hypothesis and one thing to keep in mind.

My hypothesis is that so long as one keeps on living strenuously, tending to it in a way that makes it a hallmark in one's habits -- counterbalanced by the appropriate rest and recreation -- one's passion may just grow to the point that the mind will helpfully stay "stuck" on some limited pursuits, and in those limited pursuits one will find an ultimate calling. Just keep on living vigorously, and that one thing you want to do endlessly without tiring of it, such as fishing, boxing, or gardening, is something you need to frame a career around.

The thing to keep in mind, however, is that there's a potential pitfall in failing to keep up a full lifestyle. As mentioned in my article about strenuous living, if you don't keep your efforts up then your passion will simply fade away, as it's not going to run on its own momentum. Your emotions will only be as deep as your efforts, so if you let your efforts up, your emotions will let up too.

The particular difficulty that could arise from this is that if you cease your intensity and your passion fades, and then you pick up the pacing again to rebuild your passion, your passion may spur up in a new and different place. Think of it as a garden that grows big and rich only if you keep it in one location, rotate properly, and expand accordingly. It'll only grow and bear it rewards if you feed it the appropriate attentions in its specified spots; ignore it, and shall wilt away, perhaps even perish. Then, perhaps, if you should choose to recast the seed, the garden might find itself in a new location with new soil, and bear different results, depending on how you've traveled in life since then.

Translated, I mean that if you don't keep up maintenance on your passion, then rekindling it after it fades may result in it growing in a different direction. I, for instance, when starting out in the restaurant industry was set on opening my own restaurant. However, hitting some foolish career barriers has made the energy die down a bit, and in rekindling it seems now to be going in a different direction. In contemplating my introvertedness it seems I'd enjoy a private, more self-directed career that would enable me to be on my own, such as writing, and give me the ability to be a recluse free to travel anywhere he pleases, from the mountains to the tropics.

Contemplating the Butterfly Effect, perhaps in some alternative case if I had discovered the means of preventing the original interest from fading I'd still be set on owning my own business with my own set of employees. The difference, still, is not that great, as my main interest still lies within the field of the culinary arts; only, now, in a different direction, from being the leader in charge of a group towards a common end to someone who might prefer to be more private. At present I don't know.

It can be difficult to admit to yourself that your interests have changed, as the previous emotional investment set into a goal can make us stubbornly hold onto it in form even when the emotion is gone. I, for instance, really wanted to be a fiction writer while growing up, and it took me several years to let go of that idea even as my interest in it faded, or was non-existent to begin with. I still want to and do write; it's just I don't want to do fiction. Being so stubbornly set on that direction deprived me of some valuable time for experimentation and thinking, as I coasted in the direction of fulfilling bare requisites for writing, even in college, even though it was visible to me that my head was clear of any fantasies of writing, stories, or being an author. It was but a few months or fewer that I had admitted my disinterest in fiction that my mind that I became open to new things, and got sucked into the energy of the culinary field. If I remained stubborn how much longer would it have taken for me to accept a cooking career?

Everyone may cling the same way to old ideas of goals even when their emotions fade as well. Just let go of old decisions; if you have passion in another direction, you're still going to be legitimately pursuing happiness, and sticking the old route would actually lead to dissatisfaction sans the passion. Don't be a afraid to shift gears, start over in new paths, flip-flop, or whatever if a much more intense interest is blossoming across the field.

As such, if one is concerned with building upon achievements, with achievements serving as a springboard for further ones -- that is, keeping your energy flowing in one direction -- it's important to sustain your strenuous living so that your passion too will sustain, thus maintaining the infrastructure of your interest. However, if the direction of the wind changes, don't be afraid to follow it. You might feel "invested" in something, but it's not going to bring you any satisfaction if you keep performing the motions while the interest fade. It may be scary tackling a new interest, but if it's authentic, it'll make you happy all the same.

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