Follow Your Passion, but Don’t Lose Yourself

In Outliers: The Story of Success, Malcolm Gladwell claims it takes 10,000 hours, or roughly 10 years, of consistent effort to attain the highest level of mastery in a field. But beyond just putting the time in, passion also separates the highest achievers from their peers. For example, passion fueled the intense, deliberate practice that helped renowned musician Bob Dylan and basketball player Michael Jordan overcome early career failures—in Jordan’s case being cut from his high school basketball team and, for Dylan, an inability to finish sets, which led to boos from the audience.

Like Dylan and Jordan, engaging in a passion can lead to flow, defined by Dr. Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi as the “experience of optimal fulfillment and engagement.” Flow can last for 50 years and enables individuals to persist in an activity regardless of challenges or setbacks.

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Christelle Agboka 2012
WRITTEN BY
Christell Agboka
Christelle Agboka is a freelance writer living in Toronto, Ontario.
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