Another aspect I noticed differed between passions and hobbies is how much time you put into one or the other. Keeping beauty and fashion versus writing as an example, I’ve spent an exponentially longer amount of time writing both in years and in time spent in a day than the other two.
When I do decide to do my makeup, it could take a couple of hours because I am creating a glam look that takes time and a lot of blending; however, I do my makeup much less than I used to. (I’m lucky if I do my makeup more than once a month anymore because of time limitations and working early in the mornings now.) When I bring my notebooks and laptop to Barnes & Noble, though, a few hours fly by without me noticing. I seldom get distracted and do a lot of work when I put my mind to it. I rarely get frustrated, too, like I will with makeup occasionally. I make sure to write something (almost) every day in comparison to makeup once a month.
How Badly You Want and Need It
I am sure everyone’s heard the question “How bad do you want it?” in the past. The question is asked with good reason, as how badly you want something is a large indication of whether it’s your passion or just a hobby. During my early self-discovery, being one of those influencers you see on Instagram seemed like a fun idea to try; it never stuck seriously or consistently, though.
Writing, however, is how I’ve wanted to make a living since childhood. Even at the age of twelve years old, I told my family I wanted to be an author when I grew up. The few extracurricular activities I took part in growing up mostly involved writing (i.e. school newspaper, literary magazine, and public relations officer in student council). I looked for colleges specifically to find a writing program. My music industry career ideas during college focused on public relations writing and journalistic writing. I wrote poetry more than anything. Now, I am going outside my comfort zone and reading my work, talking to people and networking to succeed in my field. (Obviously, there is quite a bit more effort put into this.)
Ties to Your Values
This aspect is one I never consciously thought of until I brainstormed for this blog post. A passion will match your personality as well as your values. One reason the beauty and fashion hobby never evolved into a passion for me is the divide between the industry and my individual values. The more I followed the influencers and the “beauty community” as a whole, I realized it felt more vain and materialistic than I can tolerate enough to thrive in. I even noticed the negative change in myself when this was my focus; nothing was good enough compared to the beauty gurus I watched and followed, and none of my equipment was good enough for me to start projects or follow through with ideas.
Writing, on the other hand, requires introspection and abstract thought to fully experience the process and create great pieces. Rather than focusing on tangible items, you treasure introspection, know your worth through your mental prowess, and (most times) aim to make a change in culture and in the world. It makes you think outside of yourself, which I value greatly in an individualistic society. (The last thing any of us with depression and anxiety want to do is stay stuck within ourselves and our own negativity.)