Dynamic Woman — Changing Times
The value of your passion project
What is the value of your passion project? Endeavors you pour heart and soul into; tasks that eat up your time; a vocation that drains your physical and mental energy and robs your pocketbook; why do it?
Humans are creative beings, at their best when they pursue a purpose with passion. Creative work satisfies an innate need. When we apply imagination to a project, we invite a soul connection to our Creator and make space for interaction with other people–a worthy purpose.
We all have talent, but passion drives our natural aptitude toward a creative experience. People who allow their passions to fire a particular ability often see their talent grow into a passion project. That might manifest as an enjoyable hobby, profitable business, or satisfying lifestyle.
Share your creative work
In our world, goodness seems in short supply. Sharing you passion project contributes to the common good. Do you knit, crochet, embroider, or quilt? You draw our eyes to order and beauty. How about painting or photography? Images inspire thoughts and emotions. Do you play an instrument or sing? You lift our spirits. Is your talent organization and leadership? You empower others. Perhaps you write. Done with integrity, you inform, educate, and entertain hearts and minds.
The world needs your gifts more than it needs your modesty, so be bold. Don’t hold back because you think your talent is small. The need is great. If you touch one heart, you serve the greater good. And with every connection you make, you enrich your own life.
This past week, meeting California’s Poet Laureate Dana Gioia enriched my life. That connection came about because I submitted my poem, The Warrior, A Tribute, to Manzanita Writers Press. I was privileged to see it printed in Out of the Fire: A Calaveras Anthology, complete with a lovely photographic illustration. That led to an invitation to attend Dana’s Calaveras County appearance and read my poem. And that led to an invitation to dine with the poet.
The dinner conversation was inspiring. Dana maintains that poetry has vanished as a cultural force in America. He advocates that poets leave the confines of academia and work to return poetry’s intellectual and spiritual influence to the public square. Spearheading this effort, he is on a stump through California’s 58 counties. Read his essay here.
Help preserve the arts
Rather than bemoan the lack of interest/support/funding of the arts, try hopping into the public arena and sharing the fruits of your labor. Look for ways to express your artsy, crafty soul in your profession, family, church, and civic life.
- Begin a conversation. Talk about what you care about. Enthusiasm is infectious. It sparks interest and raises the energy level in a room. Heartfelt conversation fosters a genuine connection between two human souls.
- Display your work. Tell your story. Quilts tell stories about our past. When quilters display their work they keep an appreciation for cherished traditions alive. When they teach others how to piece and stitch, they ensure the artform will live on in future generations.
- Support a variety of artistic expression. Most artists are not superstars. They are people with jobs and families, heartaches and health problems, low spirits, and self-doubts. When you buy a ticket, attend an event, applaud a performance, visit an exhibit, ask a question or give feedback, you become part of the process. Because art is a conversation. It requires engagement.
Community health and wellness
Much art is not a commercial success. And some of what is commercially successful struggles to remain art. But art plays a role that reaches beyond the marketplace. Art moves us to appreciation, compassion, understanding, laughter, and tears.
I am blessed to live in two communities. Living near metro Phoenix gives me access to opera, ballet, professional theater, symphony, modern dance, art galleries, and literary readings. These and many other activities lift my spirits. Equally, my life is enriched by the artistic achievements of my neighbors in the small mountain town of Groveland. Every note the Pine Cone Singers sing, every quilt my friends hang during the Quilt Stroll, every locally produced jewelry piece that circles a wrist or dangles from a neck-chain, every exchange between artist and aficionado strengthens the bonds of community life.
Nurture the artist within you. Hang out with the artists around you. It will do you heart good.
© Sydney Avey