Nothing great has ever been accomplished without passion. This aphorism leaves a message that we may have to relentlessly pursue what we want.
But what is that we want? What is that, that could be called as a purpose of life to pursue? Is it a good idea that could be commercialized or a recognition of topping the university exams or a endeavor that will change the way people look at themselves or a pursuit to change the lives of people? What is the action that needs the fuel of the passion?
Leaders who create extraordinary new possibilities are passionate about their mission and tenacious in pursuit of it. Many people have good ideas, but many fewer are willing to put themselves on the line for them.
As I read in an article from HBS a line that haunted me - “Passion separates good intentions and opportunism from real accomplishments.” This shook me up. A reminder of this principle just hit the news. Dr. Donald Berwick, is being nominated by US President Obama to head Medicare and Medicaid, a landmark bill that was passed to offer better health services at a lower cost with insurance norms relaxed and redefined.
Just a small brief of Dr.Don Berwick to those who missed the news for an IPL match or a TV soap opera - a pediatrician, passionately wanted to improve health outcomes for patients. He envisioned applying TQM (Total Quality Management) tools from manufacturing to health care. Entrenched interests with closed doors and minds didn't deter him. Eventually, through the Institute for Healthcare Improvement, the small organization he founded, he reached thousands of hospitals, hundreds of thousands of practitioners, and millions of patients over two decades.
Don knew this would be a long journey against hardened resistance but never veered off the course. Now, if his nomination is confirmed, he can guide a huge system entirely— a high proportion of the U.S. economy — toward better health at lower cost, zero defects, and more lives saved. He exudes not just vision but personal passion for the cause.
Are you the next Don Berwick ?
May be or May be not...! Continue reading…
Perhaps, you are just thinking about doing your part to make “the world*” a better place. “The world” – can be your family, society, state, country or biosphere… This emotion – let me call, Aspiration.
The aspirations are good enough to be Life’s objectives and can help yourself enjoy a purposeful life. But, that differentiates the one from being super successful. It can push somebody to change the course and redefine the objectives succumbing to the challenges. All is fair for the one, as reasoning prevails but the one is aware or willing to acknowledge that the reasoning is something what he wants to believe.
I recommend that passion cannot be excluded at all. If you are not able to put your heart into it, take yourself out of it. You would waste the shortest time available for you (lifetime) otherwise.
On the other hand, lustrous passion is also of no use without aspirations. Passion without action would eventually be dusted down as a dream.
To determine whether your passion matches your aspirations, try these 11 questions.
1. Do I feel strongly about the need for this?
2. Does the idea fit my long-held beliefs, values, and convictions?
3. Have I dreamed about something like this for a long time?
4. Do I think that this is vital for the future of people (the world*) I care about?
5. Do I get excited when I think about it, and convey excitement when I talk about it?
6. Am I convinced that this can be accomplished?
7. Am I willing to put my credibility, strengths and abilities on the line to promise action on it?
8. Can I make this the major focus of my activities?
9. Am I willing to stretch on the time lines compromising comforts, to see that this happens?
10. Do I feel strongly enough to ignore negativity and fight for this?
11. Am I committed to seeing this through, over the long haul?
Passing the passion test is doesn't guarantee success, but without it, the journey couldn’t even begin.