A Father’s Wish: Finding Passion in 2015

HeidiPowell_FathersWish

Hands down, one of the most inspiring passages I’ve ever read is below. It is a letter that was written by our brother-in-law to his sweet girls, and are words I will never forget. His message on the power of passion is one that I hope we all can draw from as we head into the New Year. Instead of just saying 2015 will be our life-changing year, let’s apply what he teaches below and actually MAKE 2015 the best year of our lives!!

Dear Girls,

Who is your favorite visual artist? For me, one of my favorites is Akiane.

Akiane is considered by many to be a child prodigy. She began drawing at the age of 4. One of her most famous paintings is called, “The Prince of Peace” which she painted at 8 years old. 8 years old! Many consider this remarkable, and by no doubt it is. Many may also misunderstand what her genius really is.

What do you think her genius is? For me, her genius has nothing to do with her artistic ability. For me, her genius is her passion for art.

Researchers and scientist have discovered that to become world class at anything – painting, playing a musical instrument, dancing, gymnastics, singing, acting, being an entrepreneur – takes 10,000 hours of practice. This idea applies to almost everything.

What are you already a world-class expert at? For one, you are an expert at walking. Babies are passionate about getting around and exploring their world. They work everyday practicing. And because they fail a lot – tripping and falling and bonking their head – the learn a lot too. You and I and all babies invest thousands of hours in learning to walk.

Now it’s sooo easy for us to walk that it’s a miracle that we are often blind to in our everyday lives. Yet to a baby we can appear to be virtuosos, just like how Akiane appears to me and may appear to you in painting.

For me, Akiane’s great genius is her passion to do art. It’s that passion that brought her to pencil and paper for hours each day when she was four. It was that passion that brought her for hours each day to her canvas when she was five. When something is our passion like that it’s not work, it’s joyfulness. It’s bliss. In my mind those 10,000 hours must have passed for her quickly. She learned and became a world class expert automatically because of her passion, not because of a unique talent in eye hand coordination, an “artistic eye”, or anything else.

This is a beautiful reality. It means that each of us is a prodigy! When we discover and live in our passion day in and out we will automatically become and develop the expertise we desire.

Here’s the recipe. 1. Discover what brings you great joy to do. Give yourself permission to try new things for a while, and if it turns out not to be joyful for you, consider why and if it’s the right thing to do, try something else. 2. Practice and do that every day, as regularly and often and for as long as possible. 3. Give yourself permission to fall and trip, just as we did when learning to walk. Our growth comes from falling without failing.

One of my greatest hopes is that you both will find your bliss. Papa discovered his genius and has lived his bliss of flying for all of his life. He literally is one of the world’s best aviators. Uncle Chris discovered his genius and lived his bliss of fitness for all of his life. He is literally one the world’s best weight-loss specialists in the world.

I am glad to serve you in your journeys to discover and live and be in your bliss. I’m excited and looking forward to seeing where life takes you. It’s a life worth living!

Love,
Dad


20 Comments

  1. Maegan Hansen - October 30, 2016

    Man, arnt dad’s the best! Seems like no matter what advice they give it’s always so special.

  2. Beth - January 10, 2015

    Thank you for sharing! This letter is beautifully written. The 10,000 hour rule is a great one to instil into our children at a young age. My husband and I are gently yet consistently helping our 3 children find and develop that thing that brings them joy, the thing they just can’t deny they were born to do. I love the journey.

    Also, Akiane is an incredible artist!! I hope others will check out her talent and become inspired.

  3. Lisa Martin - January 4, 2015

    Heidi & Chris, I really admire your work of how you help people transform their lives to become healthy people. It is inspiring to see that other people can lose weight, and keep it off. In the past I have lost weight, but I have gained it back. I just bought your book choose more loose more for life, and I am exited to try carb-cycling, and just to make healthier choices for life. Not just a starvation diet that you gain all the weight back and some more. This letter made me realize how how if you really want something bad enough that you need to try hard enough that even if you fall that it does not necessarily mean that you failed, you just need to get back up and keep going. I keep telling myself that I can lose the extra weight to become a healthier me! Not just for a short time but for life. What you do is so inspiring, that it’s just wow how people’s life is transformed by believing in themselves and hard work and exercise and eating healthy with the support of family and friends.

  4. Michele Ogburn - January 4, 2015

    I have a 2-month-old daughter and I hope to instill in her what was so eloquently said in this letter. I pray she and my 4-year-old son find their true passion in life. Thank you for sharing this!!

  5. Donna - January 3, 2015

    so happy to read this letter!!! Passion is such an amazing reminder that we all have different callings and born with different talents.

  6. Tynisha - January 3, 2015

    Thank you for inspiring others, for living the life you teach other to do. Caring for your family. Caring for others. I appreciate the work you put into all you do. Living the life doing it well.

  7. Stef - January 3, 2015

    nope… I am not crying at all 🙂

  8. Valerie - January 3, 2015

    Happy 2015 to the Powell fam! Thank you for sharing that inspirational letter! I am a true fan of your, and had the pleasure of meeting both of you when you came to Toronto for the Vemma Bode Challenge! I got your book signed as well! I am paying it forward by sharing what I learn from both of you with others! That truly motivates me. I am working with people to do the same as I know how much better we feel when we are healthy! Thank you from the bottom of my heart! Looking forward to all of the great opportunities 2015 is going to bring! Cheers to you!

  9. stacey - January 2, 2015

    i can’t tell you how much I needed to read this. I’ve been going thru a lot the last five years with my health and life In general. I have let my health issues take control and I have lost my drive in life. After reading this. I have come to realize that the thing in life that has always driven me is helping others. And since my health issues I have given up on that. But now I see I can help others that are going thru health and mental issues by using my own life. Thank you for showing me what my bliss is. God bless you!!!!

  10. Jenn holly - January 2, 2015

    Thank you for sharing this. Your family is a blessing to the world. Continue to inspire and thank you!

  11. Pamela - January 2, 2015

    Live your passion is a life well live, well said by a great Daddy

  12. Leyla - January 2, 2015

    This letter gives me an aaha moment

  13. John Kool - January 2, 2015

    Very nice!

    I might add that Chris is a qualified pilot, but was not passionate about it.
    So he found something (and someone) who he was passionate about.

    Good work, both of you.

    John Kool

  14. Juliana Valente - January 2, 2015

    Hi everyone, I’M in tears it is ao beautiful this letter. I’m from Brazil and I really loved this page, and You and Chris!! I wish you love, love, love!!!

  15. Char - January 2, 2015

    This letter is so beautiful. An awesome Dad.

  16. Jennifer - January 2, 2015

    Love it! Very inspirational. Joined your dietbet and I am really looking forward to a successful 2015. Thanks for sharing.

  17. Sonja - January 2, 2015

    I love it. i needed this as I am making a decision to start anew. leave arizona after 35 years and my job and start over. Scary but I feel I need to work on me and too many bad memories here for me.

  18. jeff - January 2, 2015

    Heidi & Chris, I really enjoy you both for a couple of seasons now my wife and I have watched your show and can’t rave enough about it. Thank you so much for sharing this article and thank you both for being positive role models in a worlworld of negativity! As a father of 2 this is a great inspiration for me in 2015 and beyond! Happy belated holidays to you and yours!

  19. Jamers - January 2, 2015

    Can I use this with my staff? I will of course say where/who this is from and your website. Can I please use your brother in law’s letter to his girls to inspire my employees?

    • Team Powell - January 2, 2015

      Yes, you can certainly use it as long as you say where you got it from.:)

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