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Passion Mapping: Your Roadmap to Success as a Small Business Owner

Updated: Oct 10, 2023


Picture of people holding two maps and a compass. We don't see their faces, but they appear to be in hiking gear and plotting their journey.
Use your passions to guide your decisions for true fulfillment

Passion is key to the success of your business. Likely, most of us have heard about ‘finding our passion’ to guide our life, but if you aren’t sure what your passion is or don’t feel particularly passionate about your business at the moment. Read on for what you can do to spark more passion in your life and business today.


Key Take-aways

  1. Passion is a Powerful Asset: Recognizing and connecting with your passions can be a significant driving force in your small business journey.

  2. Passion Mapping Drives Success: Passion mapping contributes to the success of your business.

  3. Continuous Reflection and Adaptation: Regularly reflecting on your passions and adjusting your passion map is essential for maintaining motivation, satisfaction, and success.

What do I mean by passion?

passion is a strong inclination toward an activity that people like, find important, and in which they invest time and energy

Robert J. Vallerand


In the most basic sense, passion is when we enjoy something so much that we will spend time, energy and money to do it. For example, I was so passionate about learning that, for years, I led a community English program for adults and the education programs at my church without getting paid. When we are willing to put our heart and soul into something without a dime in return, that demonstrates passion.

However, we also start our own businesses so that we can not only do what we love but also have financial freedom. Stay tuned to learn about Ikigai, which combines these, but today, let’s focus on how we identify our passions.


How connecting with passion leads to success as a small business owner

Robert J. Vallerand found that people who incorporated passion into their lives reported higher life satisfaction and an overall more positive outlook. Other research has found that people with a positive outlook attract success. Vallerand also found that passion can help people cope with stress and bounce back from setbacks, which are critical for the success of a small business. Therefore, if we connect with our passions in life, we will feel happier, which brings more success, and we can deal with challenges more easily, which also leads to success.


How small business owners can use passion mapping

Passion mapping is simply the term for reflecting and identifying your passions and then ‘mapping’ them or aligning them to your goals or making a plan for incorporating them into your life.

For example, when I left teaching to start my own business. I spent time mapping out the features of teaching that I liked the most as well as what I wanted to be doing but couldn’t as a teacher, and that led me to create this business - definitely a passion project!

  • By identifying your passions, you can incorporate them into your business to reflect your passion. By working in your passions, you will have more energy and be able to face the many challenges of business ownership.

  • Passion mapping can help small business owners create a positive work environment among their employees, which will increase their engagement and help them be more innovative and productive. Identifying passions and values is key to creating a company culture that is a key factor for successful companies.

  • Passion mapping can also help small business owners balance their passion for their work with their other life domains, such as family, health, and hobbies. By investing in passions outside of our businesses, we are more joyful about our business, and that joy contributes to the success of the business.

Develop your passion portfolio

To harness these positive effects, Vallerand suggests developing a passion portfolio, a collection of activities you are passionate about.

Try these steps to connect your passions to your day-to-day activities

  • Think about the activities that you enjoy doing the most. What are the things that make you lose track of time? What are the things you are good at and feel proud of? These are likely to be your passions. These are the things that make you feel alive, energized, and fulfilled. They can be related to your work, hobbies, values, or purpose. Brainstorm as many of these ideas as you can.

  • Make time for your passions. It is important to schedule time for your passions on a regular basis. Even if you can only spare 15-30 minutes each day, it will make a difference.

  • Find a community of people who share your passions. This could involve joining a club or group or simply connecting with people online. A community of people supporting you in your passions can make a big difference in your motivation and enjoyment.

  • Don't be afraid to try new things. If you are not sure what your passions are, experiment with different activities. The more you try, the more likely you are to find something you are passionate about.

  • Evaluate and adjust your passions over time. Passion is not static; it can change and evolve as you and your business grow and face new situations. Review your passion map regularly and check if it still reflects your current mind and heart. If not, update it with new insights, learnings, or aspirations. Be open to exploring new passions or letting go of old ones that no longer serve you or your business.

I hope this guide helps you practice passion mapping for your business. Passion mapping can be a powerful tool to help you unleash your full potential and achieve greater satisfaction and success in your work and life. 😊

If you want to put this into practice, see how you can work with me to create your own passion map.





References

Vallerand, Robert J. “The Role of Passion in Sustainable Psychological Well-Being.” Psychology of Well-Being, vol. 2, no. 1, 1 Jan. 2012, pp. 1–1, psywb.springeropen.com/articles/10.1186/2211-1522-2-1, https://doi.org/10.1186/2211-1522-2-1. Accessed 19 Sept. 2023.

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