So what drives you today?
TLDR: Be passionate and have balance.
You might stick the #dadjoke filter on and say "The Bus Driver" or it might be something that you think about a little more deeply.
Is it that your alarm always goes off at that time so you drag yourself out of bed out of habit? Is it the child screaming at you or the neigbour's child?
Are you so awake and driven that you just have to get up and greet the world with amazingly open arms and a huge smile on your face?
I'm a little jealous of the last idea there, I would love to greet the day with such enthusiasm that it is infectious. It is hard though, and I think if there are a few roadblocks in your way of being that exuberant bounding ball of energy, then it will be a challenge but it's still possible.
It's about finding passion, living passion and maintaining balance.
Passion takes many forms, but it ultimately it is a thing, a place, a task that delights and drives in equal measure. Something you are always wanting to do more of and feel that you could never tire of. Don't be afraid, it's OK to have more than one passion. Certainly it can be hard do juggle more than one sometimes, but if you're passionate enough, you can find a way.
It would be fair to say that many people (more than usual) are struggling with this notion of passion. Sometimes external factors which we can't control get in the way of us focusing on our passions. That might be a government restricting our movements and interactions. That might be a law of the land. That might be the lack of financial resources to be able to engage with the passion or responsibilities which take that time away.
Don't get me wrong, I think that you need to be responsible as much as you are passionate. The bills still need to be paid, the family still needs to be fed and the toilets still need to be cleaned. Balance here is what is needed.
So for me there are a number of things about which I am passionate.
I love food. I love making food, and I love eating food. The latter perhaps a little too much, but the food passion can be saved and passed on which is part of the reason I set up our food website https://food.heaths.net/. Luckily my wife is also passionate enough to have put up many more recipes than me, but there's so much variety there. As much as anything it's also a future resource for our kids to use, but it's also a source of inspiration.
I'm passionate about smells and fragrance. I've always loved the smells of things. Some of my earliest memories are of smells - they are etched into the fabric of being. The smell of the baked beans and sausage served me at day care when I was 3. The smell of the lunchtime meat pie and sauce lunch order in the paper bag it came in, or the Friday special hot dog order. The smell of the garden you grew up in, or the onionweed at the oval you played in on Thursday nights. The smell of your first aftershave (Old Spice or Brut 33) or your girlfriends perfume. The smell of petrichor just as the rain touches down on a midsummer afternoon. The smell of a pine forest or the salty wafts of kelp washed up on the beach. These evoke a being and a passion in me so I have learned more about fragrance and scent. I even like to create new scents and fragrances with my perfume house https://houseofkei.com/. Smell is a great passion.
I'm passionate about my community. I've been involved in council activities and helped candidates run successfully and unsuccessfully. I've been a member of the local CFA brigade in Eltham since 2001 and even run the Facebook page for the Eltham Town Square.
I'm passionate about my family. As a husband I always try to look after my wife, and as a dad, I would do (almost) anything for my kids. Sometimes it feels like I'm a glorified taxi service, and as a former Uber driver also I know how that feels; but I do know that my kids will appreciate it one day. Perhaps the day that they start driving their kids around. On that day I will laugh.
But passions can come and go. It's OK to let them go and it's OK to mourn not being passionate about these things. Over the past few years I have been passionate about Geocaching. Lockdowns took a great toll on that activity. Suffice to say that when my caches started being archived for lack of maintenance during the lockdowns, it was enough to kill the passion. I hope to enjoy caching again one day soon, but it's also OK to rule a line in the sand and turn your focus elsewhere.
So if you're struggling today a little, that's OK. If you need a mental health day, take it. Find a passion, live a passion, maintain a healthy balance.
There's always room for a little more passion too.
That's my 2¢.