Research, Training, Academia, Education…

Odd Combination or Necessity?

by Barbara Teicher

Rules and passion. Hmm. It sounds like an oxymoron. Rules bring to mind structure, constraint, and boredom. Passion, just the opposite: wild abandon and unfettered emotion–fragrance commercials! I thought about how these two coexist. What came to mind is that rules give your passion the freedom to be more intense, more passionate! In my profession, keynote speaking and corporate training, there are rules to follow: engage your audience and provide valuable content. Audience members come in as if they’re on a runaway train. They don’t really know where they’re going or how to get there. Following the rules, I take them safely on the journey with me, building a picture of where they’re going. What is the source in me that conjures passion? It’s the rush of glimpsing the audience, knowing they’ve come to see me, and I’m going to help change their business and personal relationships. When they’re “with me,” I feel exhilarated and alive. It’s like being the conductor on a speeding train, fully in control yet running full throttle toward a great destination. How can passion and rules live together? You need rules to get you on the right track. Then “The Little Engine That Could” gets you passage on the “Freedom Train. ”All Aboard!


The Element

by Willie Sànchez

I have no rules; I have principles. First, I determine why a pupil signed up for my class, and then I help him to do his best work. How? Hopefully, before my class, students will have discovered what Sir Ken Robinson calls “the element,” or their passion; and they will have worked on it. From there, I give them the freedom to polish and share it with the members of the class. My classes are usually workshops providing hands-on experience, and we work in teams. Building teamwork is another asset. I make sure that pupils don’t harbor hard feelings against one another and that they leave grudges outside the classroom. I tend to trust my students and rely on their work instead of imposing my theories. They work freely, making the best use of their time. Since yawning is not allowed, I make the classes interesting as well as instructional. But above all, I value respect. There is only one source of passion and it’s inside you. What moves you, what helps you make a difference and stay creative—that’s key. You gotta find it and cuddle it. There is no alternative. We all have a passion and must keep it going because passion should be an everyday experience. I don’t believe in rules, but I do believe in empathy and respect. We need fewer rules and more space for passion. If we set too many rules, passion fades. That’s because it thrives in an atmosphere of freedom. Keep in mind that the absence of rules doesn´t necessarily lead to chaos. Hopefully, it produces a balance. Passions overlap and work together. They don´t need an army to enforce rules. That could lead to censorship!


Happiness is a Choice

by D. Luke Iorio

Nothing great has ever been achieved without passion. Be a leader whose passion is not only visible but is true. If you aren’t passionate about the task at hand, how could your team be? The fire you light in yourself kindles the passion in your team. Nothing changes without awareness and subsequent action. We have a responsibility to continually learn more about ourselves and others, and then create new ideas and solutions to face any challenges we encounter. You can’t assume that others always know what is occurring or that they are aware of the full picture. So take the initiative to ensure that important issues are covered and addressed. Be supportive and helpful—not confrontational. Let your initiative shine a light in the direction of progress.People want greatness, so help them see it in themselves and then unleash it! So when you change your perception, you will also move mountains to climb toward your highest value or passion. In my job as a coach, illustrated by this example, the constant rule is to be authentic— to be true to who you are—and then establish your guidelines or boundaries accordingly.


Published in the hard-copy of Work Style Magazine, Fall 2013