An antidote to passion

Call me a cynical old git, but the whole “find your passion” thing has worn very thin on me over the past few years. It’s not that I think loving what you do and doing it with energy is inherently bad, but it seems to me that once you start focusing on that — on “my passion” — you have to take your focus off the thing you are doing and, just as (if not more) problematic, off the person for whom you are doing  it. Seeking your passion seems reminiscent of “the pursuit of happiness”; a pretty sure way of *not* finding it (or, at least, of discovering that when you do find it, it wasn’t really what you were looking for).

And my Scottish working-class grumpiness was made all the more self-satisfactory over Christmas when, while out for a family walk at Austin’s “Trail of Lights”, I came across a display for this: — “The World’s Platform for Passion”. At home after the walk, I watched their video and frowned, the old phrase, “ex nihilo nihil fit” coming quickly to mind. #besomebody #myass.

But Christmas was months ago. So what brought this to mind? Well it seems the staff at Austin High School are doing a great job in helping the students there build and maintain critical thinking skills. Well done AHS.
By way of antidote to the fluff, I strongly suggest pointing students at Cal Newport’s, “So Good They Can’t Ignore You” And in fact if one of the AHS staff there wants to drop me a note (an email to tommy.kelly at verilab dot the usual company ending is fine) with a name and address, I’ll start your collection by having Amazon send 10 copies to the school.

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