There is a “condition” I have been learning about through my experiences as an out-of-the-box thinker and doer as a parent, and as an innately avidly curious self-awareness junky.
I have seen this condition misdiagnosed or described as: laziness, depression, sadness, low motivation, even as a learning disability. I have been asked to send my kids for expensive evaluations and tests. Highly experienced teachers/principals (and some not-so-experienced…) who have raised their hands in despair for not being able to teach a child. In adults, the condition is often described as a funk, or low/blocked inspiration, unhappiness.
I would say this condition is probably misdiagnosed 80% of the time.
And what is the real cause of this condition? In so many cases, what is the underlying root cause of what is described or misdiagnosed as one of the above? PASSION. Or, rather, a lack thereof.
As a CranioBalance therapist, I look at underlying causes for symptoms. I do not look at just the obvious signs, the local pain or problematic area. I look at the whole person. I look at his history, at what comes up when asked what is bothering him/coming up for him in life. I watch the way he moves, sits, his body language and facial expressions. Even one’s voice can tell me a lot about what is going on inside. And, most importantly, I listen.
And it is amazing what happens when one looks underneath the surface noise to the underlying person. It is amazing what you can hear, when you listen.
What time has taught me, again and again, is that the root cause of so many issues is: a lack of Passion.
What is Passion? Passion is the source of life force. Passion is the primary fire that burns to light up your life in all of its dimensions. Hence, without it, you are like a damped our fire – just a cold, grey pile of sluggish ash. No wonder the laziness, the unhappiness, even depression.
Where do we find Passion? If we do not have it, what do we do, where do we look, to put that spark in our eyes? What is the difference, practically, that makes us want to get out of bed with verve and excitement in the morning? (As opposed to the sluggish “oh, I don’t want to do this again…let me just stay in bed some more…” - I have personally seen this come up for me so often at certain times of my life…)
Before I answer that, let me tell you about this past month. No…let’s go back two summers. I was listless, with love-my-life-but-have-sad-eyes-and-am-not-excited-to-get-out-of-bed-in-the-morning blues. This confused me – I mean, I really loved my life – it was what my husband and I had dreamed and built together. So what was the sadness about? The listlessness?
As I mentioned, I am avidly curious about human nature and am innately self-aware. So I got curious. And I prayed: “G-d, please help me figure out why, and put the spark of happiness and excitement back in my eyes.”
And an email showed up in my inbox from a friend about a Love and Passion Coach. At first, I probably turned a bit red – what is she sending me?? I wondered. But then I opened the email (after all, this friend is a modest and reliable source, and a great friend – this must be kosher ;). And that started a journey to reignite the Passion in my life.
This is what I became aware of: I was going through a phase of seeking new inspiration, with the kids growing up and all out to school. The passion that had filled me for 17 years of pregnancy and motherhood was slowly dampened as they were “grown up” and I was faced with an empty house in the mornings. Once I became aware of this, once I saw that it was just a matter of seeking new inspiration, the skip was back in my step and the spark was starting to glow again in my eyes.
After that door was opened – “G-d, I am filled with Passion” – the doors just opened one after the other, leading me down an amazing path of dream and dream fulfillment. It was not all easy – not at all – there were a lot of knocks along the way (that in essence were building me up so that I could live my new dreams – new dream, new structure). But the journey and the results were amazing.
And there was PASSION.
I suddenly woke up early in the mornings – no matter what kind of night sleep I had had – and had energy to sustain me throughout the day. I was excited. Invigorated. Happy. Even if I had to readjust, learn on the go, etc. It all seemed easier somehow. Because I was filled with PASSION.
(Example: Summer vacation. Opportunity to sleep late!!! But with the construction crew showing up and getting to work at 7:30 AM every morning to build my dream, noise and smells of smoke (from the cigarettes of the workers) would wake us early. The kids groaned. I would just pop out of bed, stretch, and say: “Yay! Noise! Smoke!” and go about my day. That is the difference between being fueled by Passion, and not.)
Then, last month saw a lull in work for me, and again I was noticing myself “drying up”. Low fuel, low inspiration. But now I know! Now I have the tools to recognize: Ooop – lack of passion coming up. Where’s the leak? How do we add another block of wood to the flame? Once I asked that, once I got curious, the doors started opening again. New information, new lessons learned, and inspiration flows once more. Passion flames flare back up.
Now, to the kids. My kids take after my husband and myself. In fact, it goes back many generations. We both come from a long line of entrepreneurs. That does not only mean that we like to be our own managers. It means we like to work with our Passion.
We, typically, do not want to get out of bed in the morning if we can not spend our days living our Passion all the time. My kids are great examples of that. :) I can tell you countless stories about several kids of mine with various temperaments and learning styles. We were told to get them evaluated. Recommended to send them for expensive tests.
But I saw things from out of the box. I looked past the signs and symptoms to the child underneath. And I saw that the real issue was a lack of Passion. The way to help these kids is to help them find their Passion. With some kids it takes time, maturity. With others, it means directing them toward a creative outlet for their energy that then fuels them to have fire for other areas in life. (Like finding a sport or hobby that fuels them on a regular basis. That excitement and renewed love of living spills over and allows them to be excited to succeed in school as well.)
And with each child, this was the cure. The child with suspected learning disabilities –> really a lack of self-motivation. Once she matured a bit more and found her inner motivation - her inner passion, viola! - problem solved. The one with, perhaps, ADD issues – nope! After he was tested and the results were negative (and I only agreed to have him tested because HE was curious about the outcome) we were back to my theory, and it holds true. He was simply seeking passion to keep him interested in learning. And the kid that had the school staff up in arms –> well, we thought out of the box and provided him with a creative solution that gave him what he was truly seeking…and bam! Successful happy student.
The secret to life’s happiness. The secret to life’s vitality source. Align yourself with what you LOVE in life, and it will fuel your life all day, every day.
With love and blessings,
Beit Roga Coffee Mornings
Come join us this week at Beit Roga for a Morning of Inspiration!
Coffee Mornings at Beit Roga. This Tuesday, 10 AM.
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