"Man is only great when he acts from passion." --Benjamin Disraeli.
It doesn't matter what you feel, just feel something. Choose something that makes you chomp at the bit, deliriously euphoric or even infuriated.
Passion is the driving force behind all of the things we do. All of the worthwhile things we do, anyway. I'm a firm believer in diving headfirst into your work. Before you simultaneously roll your eyes and audibly sigh at my high school rambling, hear me out.
Passion exists in more than a romantic, dreamy, whirlwind love. In fact, if you thought this article would be solely based on how much I 'loooove my awesome boyfriend of two months!!!!, — because that's all the teenagers think about — shame on you.
I've found what I hope will prove to be a completely enveloping and fiery lifelong passion, my driving force: writing. However, your passion doesn't have to lie in what's deemed 'artsy'.
In order to explain, let me meander for just one moment. Math absolutely blows my mind. Leaves me completely and utterly boggled. Dumbstruck. Speechless. And those are the nicer words I'd use. Therefore, when I see a student who loves math and can solve any problem, I have to ask why. The most general, however eloquent, response I receive is the answer is always right in front of you.
Although I wish I could say I enjoy taking part in such a practiced and meticulous activity, I can't. Instead of chalking it up to simply being a mathematical failure, I like to claim that I like something more mysterious (sounds good, right?), something less thought out. It all depends on what lights your fire.
I believe the same about sports, which is precisely why even though I love football, I refuse to watch the NFL. In college ball, regardless of whether it's C.J. Spiller sprinting down the field (good luck with him, Buffalo!) or the monster Eric Berry from Tennessee is taking down a guy ready to run, they're playing with passion. In the NFL, I think that not all, but a lot of passion is lost and replaced with a sense of pride that verges on egoism and materialism.
Maybe it's just another excuse for my being a sore loser. I play tennis and if you've never played, you may not guess that it gets ugly. Being the self-refereed game it is, you'll often see me muttering under my breath and shaking my head in disbelief that the ball was not, in fact, on the line. This self-proclaimed passion relieves my conscience ever-so-slightly when I recollect the time or two I took a swipe at the air with my racket and the few minutes I undoubtedly had to spend at the fence taking deep breaths.
Another passion of mine happens to be politics and the biggest contributing factor to my confessed hotheadedness. I'll save my political opinions for a different column (watch out, Nancy Pelosi, I'm after you first). The point is just to have something that just gets you wired. Pick an issue, an activity, anything that makes you feel.
After all, what's really worth putting effort into if you're not passionate? Working with a lack of passion only produces mediocre work, which doesn't happen to be a particularly admirable habit to form.
Apathy kills your brain, your soul, your heart. So get out there. Find a passion. Go on, dive in.
Morgan Scarboro is a student at Apalachee High School and a contributing columnist for the Barrow Journal.