In a recent blog post, I discussed one of Earth Equity Advisors’ core values, GRATITUDE. In this post I’d like to focus on another principle of our firm, PASSION. What is passion? Most people would agree that passion refers to a strong motivation mixed with intense emotions (Psychology Today). My definition of passion is the feeling of losing perspective of time and place, and being in the “zone.” I’m motivated to experience the things I’m passionate about, even if it means making changes or sacrifices.
As a simple example, I am passionate about waterfalls. My husband has learned over the years that I will hike much further if I get a waterfall payoff at the end. We are on a quest to hike in as many National Parks as we can before our knees wear out! On a trip about 10 years ago to Yosemite National Park, I found these Advice From Nature cards by Ilan Shamir in one of the park stores. The “Advice from a Waterfall” card really spoke to me, and has become a mantra for all the passions in my life:
Advice from a Waterfall:
Go With the Flow
Roar With Excitement
Let Your Cares Fall Away
Create Your Own Music
Immerse Yourself in Nature
Make A Splash!
I have rewarded myself with these Advice From Nature cards after various hikes, and have collected quite a few. I have used them in a leadership program for ministers to help them figure out their passion and vision for the future. They are fun to read through, and you can see if you resonate with advice from a bear, owl, buffalo, butterfly, the ocean, a geyser or others.
From a professional perspective, starting about 10 years ago, my passion has been to promote a triple bottom line (profit, people, planet) philosophy of doing business. After working for Fortune 50 companies most of my career and seeing the singular focus on the traditional bottom line, I resonated strongly with the B Corp Declaration of “using business as a force for good in the world.” I even told friends that I would only return to work for a company (while running my own consulting firm at the time) if it was a Certified B Corporation. I continued to check the B Corp website listing for companies in North Carolina. Three years ago, Earth Equity Advisors (formerly Krull & Company), headquartered in my hometown of Asheville, showed up on the list, and I sent Pete and Neill my resume. It was a match from the beginning — an opportunity for me to use my financial and psychology background to work with people as they navigate their relationship with money and plan for the future. Since the work aligns with my vision, it doesn’t feel like work, in the sense that I am putting my energy in a place where I have passion and commitment. I have developed a niche working with women in transition, helping them navigate financial life decisions. As we help people align their investments with their values, it is energizing to be part of a movement to use business as a force for good in the world, and to support all stakeholders, instead of only the bottom line that focuses on shareholder return (an outdated model in my view).
If you can figure out where your passion lies, it can help you channel your energy in the right direction. Hopefully, you are already living a life of passion, personally and professionally. Spring is a great time for new beginnings and exploration, so ignite some PASSION!
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