Stop Chasing Your Passion. Embrace It.

Living a fulfilling life isn't about chasing what you love but about finding love in what you do.

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I always thought that in order to be happy I had to find my passion and follow it. Little did I know that actually going after what I loved would kill my love for it. That's when I realised the message about 'following your passion' isn't as straightforward as people think.

When I was 18 I decided to pursue my love for horses by going to a horse university that combined equestrian studies with business studies. I figured those two together would give me a good foundation for some kind of career in the horse world. I lasted one semester. I didn't enjoy studying horses and being assessed on how I studied them. I was interested in the sport, in improving my riding and in strengthening the relationship with my horse, but I wasn't interested in all the other stuff that came with it at university. I didn't want horses to become my 24/7. I didn't want them to be my whole life, even though having them in my life made my life whole. That's when I made the decision to leave after one semester to pursue management studies in a different university and keep riding on the side. And that's what I've done ever since.

This experience made me realise the message about 'following your passion' isn't as good as people think. It's not always the best path to try to monetise what you love, or building your whole life around one particular thing. In fact, the latest research in positive psychology has shown how this can lead to obsessive passion which is associated with unhappiness, stress and lack of wellbeing. When I discovered this, I realised I had to explore passion in more depth to figure out what it actually is and how can you use it in a positive way.

Through my research I discovered an answer that was so simple I was in awe of it. It turns out that you don't need to tie passion to one activity or one thing. Instead, you can choose to bring passion out of you whenever you want. Passion is a form of positive energy that sits inside of you which means that you have full control of it. You can choose to do more things with passion. You can choose to be passionate. You can choose to live a life full of passion.

Stop thinking the grass is greener elsewhere, and start looking at that amazing green grass that you're standing on already. Learn to tap into your inner passion and you'll learn to make the most out of the grass you're already on.

Curious for more? Check out my just released book Screw Finding Your Passion: It's Within You, Let's Unlock It. You can also sign-up for free weekly happiness tips on my Happyologist blog which is all about helping you live your best, most passionate life.

Susanna Newsonen

Author & Keynote Speaker, The Happyologist Ltd

Susanna Newsonen is the one and only Happyologist®. She is a happiness life coach and keynote speaker. She uses the science of positive psychology to help you to kill your self-doubt, embrace positive thinking, and build a lifestyle you love. She is the author of Happiness is Here and Screw Finding Your Passion. She is a published researcher, a TEDx speaker, an online columnist, and a regular commentator in the media from the BBC to The Huffington Post and more. Her corporate client list ranges across industries, including American Express, BMW, Kellogg’s, Lululemon Athletica and 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment to name a few. In her free time she is a competitive dressage rider with Olympic ambitions. She adores dogs and believes we can learn a lot from our four-legged furry friends. She inspires and educates her loyal following through her blog at


Susanna this is such an important concept and probably particularly relevant for Gen Y (I.e. Me!) I can't wait to read your book...
Go to the profile of Susanna Newsonen
over 6 years ago
So glad to hear this is a helpful concept for you Maya!
I hope you enjoy the book! :)
And if you're ever looking for more one-on-one help I also offer coaching to help you unlock that positive passion energy within you!