There comes a time when you must decide if something in your life is an interest or a commitment.
Interest says, “This thing is kind of cool. I might check it out. If it easily accessible, I’ll do it.” Commitment says, “This is what I want. I will go out of my way to understand it. I will pursue it fully.”
A lifestyle of commitment has three key elements. Do your research, apply yourself, and pursue your passion.
Do Your Research
When you commit to something, you commit to homework. Lots of it! Read every book, watch every TEDtalk, learn all that you possibly can. My commitment to the performing arts has created a weird habit, that the rest of my family finds obnoxious. I am obsessed with the special features on DVDs. I want to watch every actor/director interview. I want to know how the special effects were achieved. I will devour every piece of behind the scenes footage that is accessible to me. Even after all these years, I am still doing research.
**It is possible that during the research phase you will realize that you don’t want to commit, that this thing is not for you. That’s ok! Find another interest and start over, it’s ok to change your mind.
2. Apply Yourself
After you’ve done your research, it’s time to apply yourself. This is the part where you get to do the thing! But not just that, application is so much more. Pursue people who work in the industry that you want to be a part of. Ask them lots of questions, shadow them at their job if you can. Look for opportunities to be a part of the community of people doing what you want to do. Say yes, a lot. This step will require you to step outside of your comfort zone. Don’t be afraid! The road to commitment is paved with uncertainty, learn to be comfortable with the uncomfortable.
**It is possible that during this phase you may learn that committing doesn’t look the way you thought that it would. You may find that there are aspects of the commitment you hadn’t anticipated. It is ok to reach this point, and change your mind! Just pick a new interest and start again!
3. Pursue Your Passion
You’ve done your research. You’ve applied yourself. You’ve learned all that you can. Now it’s time to pursue your passion! Go for it! Be active in your own life, don’t passively wait for opportunities to come your way. You have to chase what you want. If you don’t, someone else will.
If you do your research, apply yourself, and pursue your passion whatever you want can be yours.