The Fire Starter Sessions: Find Passion in What You Do for a Living
Author Danielle LaPorte believes the fire you need to live the life of your dreams already flames inside of you.
BY: Jennifer E. Jones
Photo Credit: Sherri Koop
According to LaPorte, paying attention to feelings carries a heavy weight in a fire starter's life. She says, "Everything you do, from the food you eat to the people you hang out with, is about the desire to generate a feeling. 'This is going to make me happy. This is going to make me sad.' Either way, it's all about feelings. So why don't we get clear on how we want to feel and then do things that will make us feel that way. That's how to be godly in your own existence. Once you're in that mode, you realize how you feel is a choice. When I'm not feeling great, just considering what I could do to feel better already makes me feel better, because I feel empowered. I feel in charge."
Getting clear on your feelings is only half the journey, LaPorte shares. We all know what it is to be stuck in a rut even after your desires are obvious. It's that comfortable place where you don't know how to get going and life's demands have scheduled out anything that's just for you. LaPorte has some tough advice for those who are stalling.
"They don't want it bad enough," she says. "No excuses. You want out of that good, mediocre place? No excuses. Helplessness is such a drag. You can put people in two categories: people who move towards things and people who move away from things out of fear. There's something to that reaction to a dream: 'I don't know how to start' vs. 'I'm going to figure it out.' I would put my money behind the 'I'll figure it out' people every time even if they didn't have a dime to their name or no former experience. The people who say, 'I'll figure out'... they will."
While they certainly have the less traditional road, LaPorte knows that creative people especially are born to make their dreams a reality. "It's part of having passion. You are going to make it happen. Nobody else is going to paint your painting for you," she explains. "You really are in that place of 'It's up to me.' It's that divine choiceless-ness. 'I gotta figure it out, so I will.'
On the other side of the dreamers are the ones who aren't quite sure what they want to do with their lives. There's no discernable talent nor direction. What advice does LaPorte have for them?
"Do anything. Just start," she says. "Any decision is better than no decision. Even if you do something and you tank, you will be further ahead. You'll know more about yourself, your strengths, your weaknesses, you'll know more people. Even failure can lead to something magical. Express yourself in the idea that's in front of you. For some people, that's your retail job. Maybe it's the open mic night. But don't keep quiet. You'll die, you'll whither."
Lastly, LaPorte believes being a fire starter is about spiritual growth. At the end of the day, it's choosing a life beyond routine, safety and the opinions of others. It's higher, but it's reachable. And it starts with knowing you were meant for more than you're doing right now. LaPorte knows it's listening to that inner voice that sounds something like this: "'I want to be awake. I gotta be awake. I have to live a shiny life, because the alternative sucks.'"
Also, get more fire-starting goodies on her web site www.daniellelaporte.com.