The question struck me somewhere in the midst of my freshman year of college. I frequent this thought often, not obsessively but concerningly, because is there really such thing as it being too late? I began contemplating the irony as I was realizing what my passion truly was, those times where the amount of praise I was receiving from my professors regarding my writing overwhelmed me, my body instantly captivated by this inexplicable feeling of pride and happiness. There is no better feeling than being commended for successfully accomplishing something that involves your passion, that one thing you always wholeheartedly put yourself into. I was told that my writing was powerful enough to “inspire, influence and ignite,” words I would have never personally used to describe the one thing that I, ironically, took the most pride in. I have always been fearful of being too cocky, that taking pride in my writing would get me scoffed and laugh at by people who didn’t think it was as good as I did. So, I did what I thought was best and proceeded to pick a “safer” major for my college degree. It turns out that Criminal Justice is not something I can necessarily call my passion but something good enough to keep me interested and on my toes.
I know how this sounds, like I’m some pansy who’s choosing the latter because I’m too afraid of graduating college both broke and unsuccessful. This is a common fear amongst the majority of college students whether they are pursuing their passion or not, but it hits a little closer to home when the fear actually pertains to you. College is one of those places where you are surrounded by the most diversity possible and exposed to things that high school would have never taught you. You are meant to be intrigued and inspired by those around you, learning something new each and every day. College is one of those places where your passion can be found if it hasn’t been already.
The fact of the matter is that the only plausible thing you can do about this kind of fear is to face it. You can run and hide from it, but what good would that really do if you’re purposefully depriving yourself of your passion, one of the things that makes you exceptionally happy? Disregard the opinions of others to save yourself from being discouraged, realize that you are only competing against your past self and prioritize your dreams of doing what you love. This, of course, is easier said than done but wouldn’t you like to at least be able to say that you tried?
I began this piece pondering if there is really such a thing as being too late in life and I decided that there’s really no such thing at all. There is no such thing as it being too late to pursue your passion because everybody comes across their passion at different points in their life, it’s not something that we all experience at the same time. If you are serious about your passion you will refuse to let anything hold you back, you will work toward it every day, you will show constant dedication to reaching your ultimate goal.
If you feel that you are having trouble finding your passion simply start with acknowledging the things that you know you love to do. Manifest possible future scenarios doing those things and pay attention to the feeling you get inside of your chest as you keep your imagination going. Make sure you can absolutely feel it in your heart before deciding it is what you love and, once reaching that point, make the decision to pursue it, never giving it the chance to slip away from you.
© 2017 Reef Magazine