Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Why You Might Change Your Passions and/or Dreams in Mid-Life

I used to be all about performing. Onstage, in concerts. Watching others tackle my original work. Paying big bucks to see the masters at work. I've sung in Carnegie Hall and on CBS for the Kennedy Center Honors. I've watched as television actors made my words their own and gave life to my characters in Los Angeles. I've witnessed firsthand some of the most legendary performers of the 20th century.

So why isn't it all that important for me to work in the performing arts anymore? I have my reasons, which I'll list below. Perhaps you'll recognize some of them yourself, if you're challenged by a major shift in your goals.

But first, check out what Hugh Mcleod has to say about this phenomenon, in his post Allow Your Work To Age With You at Gaping Void.

Hugh advocates quitting and moving on. I'm analyzing the possible reasons why one would quit that support Hugh's take on the subject. The reasons?

Those things are no longer fun.
Pursuing them makes no business sense - too much money expended for less and less returns.
Quitting allows for investigating other options and opportunities.
You've found something better.
It was never about [fill in the blank], and you've had enough of what it's about.
You've lost faith in the issue/idea/area.
You've lost respect for the issue/idea/area.
You've fulfilled your dream and don't need to go further.
The money didn't follow.
You feel there are too many sacrifices you continue to have to make.
It was someone else's dream in the first place.
It was more about proving something about yourself than a love for it (the issue, idea or area.)
You're much more enamored of part of the dream than the whole thing.
You've found easier/cheaper/better ways of working at your dream.
You ran out of ideas.
You've decided the amount of work you have to do isn't worth it in the long run.
It really is too hard to pull off.

I used to dream about making movies. Now I dream about travel, following the sun, being outdoors, athletic activity.

But it is strange to say goodbye to a passion that's taken up so much time and energy. But it needs to happen, since the passion is just not there anymore.

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