How To Follow Your Passion & Live Your Dreams

Take a second and imagine your life free of stress. No deadlines, no angry customers, no horrible bosses, no flowcharts, or anything else that makes your blood boil.

Picture yourself doing something fun each and every day, for weeks, months, or even years. Sound too good to be true? Well, despite what society has programmed you to believe, this isn’t as far fetched as it seems at first glance.

I think that the vast majority of people around the world, including myself, were trained to believe that life is simply ‘get an education, get a job, buy a house, start a family, pay your taxes, and eventually die’.

While some, or even all, of those things are good things (besides the death part) – I think that there is one large piece of the puzzle that is overlooked each and every time. Happiness through the form of passion.

Someone’s passion is usually an activity that a person would love to do each and every day, for the rest of their life. Someone’s passion would be self-motivating and provide a sense of internal fulfillment at a level that is unmatchable.

determine your passion is the first step
I was invited by a local woman to go on an adventure in Siem Reap, Cambodia.

We are trained to think that our job is the core to our life and everything must circulate around that. And if you want to live the traditional western lifestyle, then yes, that is a pretty good summary of how things work.

The reality is that after about age 12, most people start to realize that their dreams are, well, just that – only dreams. We start to understand that almost everyone has a job that they hate, almost everyone is stressed at work, and virtually nobody has free time.

Soon, our dreams and aspirations turn in to mere fantasies – and before we know it, we are thrown into the workforce where it’s sink or swim.

I believe that most people go through life overlooking the most important part – their passion. Most people are so caught up in making money to pay their bills that they never have the time (or maybe never even consider) to determine what truly would make them happy.

Can you imagine how much different your life would be if you designed your life around your passion? Can you imagine how much more amazing this world would be if more people followed their dreams instead of chasing money? 

For those who like to challenge the status quo, and for those who are open to new ideas and concepts about life – I challenge you to determine your own personal passion, design a pathway to achieve it, and take immediate action to live the actual life that you were intended to live!


  1. Determine Your Passion
  2. Calculate Your Time Remaining
  3. Determine A Pathway To Your Passion & Take Action
  4. Make Your Passion Full-time
Wandering around and getting lost in the amazing architecture of Jodhpur, India.

How To Determine Your Passion

Let’s take a moment and learn the key to determining your own true passion.

Before falling asleep each night, lay there and try to think about any ONE type of activity that you could do every day for the rest of your life, whether you were rich or poor, and love it each and every day. Please remember to avoid thinking about job positions. You are not trying to find a new job, you are trying to determine your passion, which is usually in the form of an activity.

Now, this isn’t really an easy task – for 2 reasons.

  1. There are literally an infinite amount of activities that you could do for the rest of your life. Determining your passion will require you to sit and seriously think. Maybe it will take you a few days, maybe it will take you a few weeks.
  2. Remember, if you had $1B dollars in your bank account, you would want to do this everyday of your life. And on the flip side of the coin – if you were very poor and only food, water, and shelter were provided to you at no cost – you would still enjoy doing this activity each and every day of your life.

I can guarantee that there aren’t too many activities in this world that you would enjoy doing for such a long time. That’s why the ‘determining process’ will take a while. 

While walking through a village in Jaisalmer, India – this group of kids ran up to me and asked me to take a selfie with them.

After the first night of pondering and sifting through ideas, you may come up with a few good ideas. Great! During the following pondering sessions, be sure to focus on the PROS and CONS of each. Your brain will start to go down each and every rabbit-hole to fully understand each and every potential blessing and pitfall of that particular activity. This will also take some time. 

After many brainstorming sessions, hopefully you have determined what your true passion is. Maybe your passion is painting portraits of people, or jumping out of a plane with a wingsuit, or hiking up snowy mountains, or snorkeling through coral reefs, making a specific type of jewelry, or being a rodeo clown. I literally have no idea what your passion is. But you can see that the possibilities are endless.

As for me, I determined that my passion was to travel the world and experience culture. Not everyone enjoys solo traveling, and that’s totally fine. It’s definitely not for everyone. But I am like a kid in a candy story when I walk out of my hotel and onto the streets of foreign country. It is so fulfilling to me!

This is an example of how I now live my life. I make my decisions leading with passion.

But once you determine your passion, then the mission is to lay out a pathway that will help you get from where you currently are in life, to where you want to be.

Generally speaking, most people are not enjoying their passion on a weekly basis. In fact, most people probably aren’t even enjoying their passion every 6 months.

So, the goal is to figure out a way for you to include your passion in your life more than what you are currently doing. That is where you want to be!

There may not be a direct pathway to get you there, but that’s normal. There may be many hurdles that you must jump over to get there. That is also normal. Hang tight, more on that soon.

If you learn anything from this article, it’s this: your passion must choose you…you must not choose your passion. Got it? Say it over and over again until it sticks in your brain. This is the one part that you cannot mess up!

Going for a swim off the coast of a small village in Southern Vietnam.

Calculate Your Time Remaining

Next, take a moment and think about your death. I know, it’s creepy. But do it. More specifically, think about when your death will be. Depending on your current age, you may have a lot less time to live than many other people.

Why do this? Well, when you start crunching numbers, you will realize that you have less time than you think – and that usually puts a fire under your butt to make a change sooner than later.

Now let’s just assume that you will die at age 100. This is an easy number to calculate. Now subtract your current age from 100, and now you know when you will die. But the reality is that a US average is like 78 years old.

Now, subtract your age from 78. The number just got a lot smaller, didn’t it? Are you getting uncomfortable, yet? What about when I mention that some people die much, much sooner. I know…you probably want to stop reading this article, now. I feel you…but just bear with me…

So, your age subtracted from 78 is the best estimate of the amount of time that you have remaining. 

The big question is what will you DO with that remaining time?

Watching the sunset from the top of a cliff overlooking a lake in Udaipur, India

Money VS Time VS Health

Many years ago, I came across a chart that explained life by using 3 basic variables. It doesn’t matter how you look at it, it’s is a bit chilling.

Good HealthYesYesNo
Enough MoneyNoYesYes
Enough TimeYesNoYes
There is never a perfect time in life.
  1. Will you have good health and enough money throughout your life, but not enough time to enjoy your life?
  2. Will you have good health and a lot of free time, but not enough money to really enjoy the things that you want in life?
  3. Or will you have a lot of time and money, but your health keeps you from enjoying your passion?

It’s very rare that a person has all 3; health, money, and time. If you do, then my next question would be ‘what’s stopping you from living your passion?’

But if you are like the rest of the world, there’s a good chance that you have 2 of the variables…or possibly even only 1. Yikes.

So knowing all of this, my next question to you is ‘when is the right time to start living your dreams and following your passion?’ 

The answer is rather simple. 

The reality is that there is no perfect time. There never will be. There will always be barriers that will attempt to block you from doing more of what you love. 

Stopping for a moment to have a Guinness in Ireland’s oldest pub, The Brazen Head.

And so if there isn’t a ‘perfect time’, then that means that any time is just as good as any other. Well then, why not now? I mean, sure, you could wait another 5 years to solve x, y, or z problems…but why? Why not just start now? 

Will waiting for 5 more years really give you that extra advantage? An extra advantage for what, exactly? Why not just start having more fun now?

See how simple and basic these questions become? Interesting, isn’t it?

Questions always lead to more questions. And if you ask yourself enough questions, eventually you will see that living your passion just boils down to a choice. You either want to do it, or you don’t. You either will or you won’t. You will either keep doing what you’ve always done and keep getting what you’ve always gotten – or you will take a leap of faith in the direction of your dreams. The choice is yours. It always has been. It always will be.

Determine A Pathway To Your Passion & Take Action

Don’t think that you must quit everything today to start living your passion tomorrow. Nope. Baby steps!

Try to lay out a pathway that will include a bit more of your passion within your current life. Everyone’s starting point is different and everyone’s end-point or ideal lifestyle will be different.

If you like hiking, try to go once per month to a nearby mountain or trail. Have a bit more time? Try to go 2x or even 4x per month.

Cruising around off the coast of ShenZhen, China on a speed boat. The mountain view was amazing!

Your level of happiness will increase by such a large percentage when you start doing what you really enjoy, more often.

Maybe you require special equipment to enjoy your passion. That’s fine. I would simply start saving your money and only spend it on the equipment that is necessary, and stop spending money on things that aren’t necessary. I would also start selling things around my house that I didn’t need anymore, and I would use that money to help pay for the new items.

This Was My Pathway:

After I determined my passion, which took about 2 weeks of intense thinking for 1 hour each night before going to sleep, I knew I needed to develop a pathway to get more traveling in my life. But, I craved more than just traveling in my local area. I wanted to travel around the world!

I couldn’t just magically snap my fingers and start traveling around in a foreign country. I needed a passport, I needed a visa, I needed to be trained a bit on traveling solo, I needed to research what to pack, I needed to learn what to do in certain scenarios, and I also needed to have enough cash to support myself. 

There was definitely a lot of planning for me to do. But you know what? Each piece of information that I learned was exciting to me. With each new piece of information that I learned, I knew that I was one step closer to living my dream. I craved new information about solo traveling throughout many different countries. I looked forward to coming home after work and researching for hours, days, weeks, and even months on end.

Taking Action

After gathering all of the information that I needed, and saving enough money to travel solo for at least 2 years, I decided that it was time to pull the trigger and leave my old life behind.

From the time that I determined my passion, which was (and still is) to travel the world solo and experience culture, until the time that I got on a plane to leave – was just a little over 1 year. I mentally prepared myself rather quickly, but I needed enough time to save some cash.

I saved enough money, bought enough items, and learned everything that I could get my hands on about solo travel. I prepared myself for the long-haul.

Catching a flight from one Asian country to the next.

What Is A Normal Timeframe?

I don’t think there’s a normal timeframe. Like I mentioned before, everyone has a different passion and everyone has a different starting point.

For example:

Person A is rich and now he wants to start Hangliding. Well, it’s easier for him to transition to a fun life by buying the necessary equipment, do some research, and begin immediately. Quitting his job won’t be as difficult as it would be for someone who isn’t financially stable.

Person B, however, is poor. He also wants to start Hangliding. But he will work many more hours to save enough money to buy the equipment. Learning loads of information through YouTube is free, however. 

Another example could be 2 different people who are equally wealthy and have the same amount of free time. But one person is married with children and the other person is single and independent. The individual who is married with children has many more obligations and commitments to consider before making a drastic life change. Rearranging an entire life is much easier for someone who is completely independent.

So in regards to time frame, keep in mind that there are almost an endless amount of passions as well as different life-obstacles that people must overcome. Family, friends, money, jobs, location challenges, and and endless possibility of other prior commitments. It definitely takes time to transition. But the amount of time is different for everyone.

In some cases, the 1 year that it took me to start living my passion would be considered really quick. In other scenarios, 1 year would be considered really slow. It all just depends.

Make Your Passion Full-time is the 4th step
Zipping through the countryside of Southern Vietnam on the back of a motorbike with my buddy, Viet.

Cut Out Pointless Crap In Your Life

If you are looking to make a change as quick as possible, like I did, then it’s important that you cut out and remove the pointless crap from your life.

Plain and simple: if it isn’t supporting you and your passion, then it’s time to let it go. And yes, this includes people. Sound a bit cold? Well, kindof. 

But the reality is that if your passion is as important to you as you claim it is…then nobody and nothing should stand in your way…including people who claim to be your friends.

If your friends don’t support you and your decision to make a positive life change (which is in favor of your passion), then why would you consider them to be your friends? It’s important that you surround yourself with people who help to build you up rather than break you down.

Remember, we are not talking about taking a vacation here and there…we are talking about TRULY enjoying your life. Waking up every day in a place that you love, surrounded by people that you enjoy, doing daily activities that make you smile and laugh every day. THAT is a life worth living. THAT is a life worth fighting for.

Taking a good look at the Ferris Wheel in Hong Kong before I rode on it.

Your passion should be on the highest pedestal. It should be your highest priority! It’s time that you start treating it as such! you can’t let anyone or anything stand in your way. You need to be strong enough to push people aside, if necessary.

Now, once these people and/or items are removed, avoided, or pushed aside, then you can develop a much more efficient pathway to your dreams or passion in life. 

The more people and items in life that try to slow you down, limit you, and/or stop you – the longer it will take for you to get to that perfect lifestyle that you dream of.

Pro Tip:

Immediately stop taking advice from people who were too scared to chase their own dreams.

Make Your Passion Full-time

Do you remember earlier when we talked about Money, Health, and Time? Do you remember when I said that it’s quite rare to have all 3?

Well, what if I told you that you could have all 3? And not only that, you could be spending all of your time living the life that you wanted to live. Sound intriguing? Haha, I sound like an infomercial.

But seriously, though. This is possible. The blueprint is rather simple. It just takes time to reach this particular goal.

Determine A Pathway To Your Passion & Take Action is the 3rd step
Invited to hang out with a big family in China for the entire day. We finished by having some dessert in this small shop.

I will give you the basics to full-time passion.

In the beginning, you will probably be working at a job that you don’t like. That’s normal. After you determine your passion, create a pathway to get there, and after you start transitioning – you will start to spend more time doing the thing that you enjoy doing.

After several months of including more of your passion in your life, your skill will improve. You will have learned many things along the way, much of which you didn’t know only a few months ago.

Now, you have become more valuable because your knowledge and expertise has improved. You can now start to earn a side income because of your new skill set. Maybe people will pay you for your personal guidance on a certain topic. Maybe people will hire you to fix something. Maybe people will pay you for being their guide. The sky’s the limit, really. Get creative.

You can take that money and invest it into your passion. Maybe this will help you buy more equipment or maybe this will help you do something else related to your passion. Only you will know how to best use that money.

As time goes on, you will have more customers. Soon, you can’t keep up with all of the new business because you are still working full time at the job that you hate. 

Eventually the day will come that you will have the joy of telling your boss that you will no longer be working there anymore. You will be able to delightfully tell him that your side business has grown and that it requires your full-time attention.

Soon, your income may start to match or exceed what you made at the job that you hated. The major difference is that you wake up every day excited to do the thing that you know you were meant to do, whatever that may be.

Is this rare? Statistically, yes, I’m sure it is. But the reality is that this is entirely possible if you are seriously self-motivated and driven.

For TET holiday in Vietnam, the locals dressed me up in traditional clothing.

And do you remember earlier, how we talked about determining your passion? I told you that you must determine what would make you happy whether you were super rich or super poor? 

Well, now you can see why it’s important that your passion must choose you, rather than you choosing your passion.

If you want to start building your life around your passion and potentially turning your passion into your primary income, then it’s important that you don’t just ‘pick’ some random activity.

Can you imagine building a new lifestyle around something that you don’t really like? You will soon find that you will be in the exact same position that you will before…doing something that you don’t really like, or even hate.

Don’t choose your passion. Your passion must choose you.

Moments after stopping to buy a fresh coconut to drink, these kids brought me their English book – and I helped them practice for an hour.

What Do You Have To Lose?

I can remember way back to 2014, I had just determined that my passion was to experience culture by traveling the world. I knew I wanted to become a full-time solo traveler.

I had so many different thoughts that flooded my mind. How will I afford it? What if I get injured? What if I get sick? What if I don’t like it? What will I do about my retirement? Does this mean that I won’t get married and have a family? What will my current friends and family think about my decision?

As an American, we generally have a fear of failure that often holds us back from doing something new. Even if an opportunity is staring at us right in the face, many of us would walk away just because we fear that we may fail. Why? Because failure would lead to embarrassment…and most of us want to avoid that awkward feeling at all costs.

Calculate Your Time Remaining is the 2nd step
While walking through the ‘dangerous’ area of Manila, Philippines, I was invited to hang out with these guys during their Christmas celebration.

But these were only a fraction of the questions that I asked myself. There were probably 1,000 more that I asked. Yeah, I admit, I am a bit of a nerd. I like to have answers for almost every possibility that could arise.

But, out of the 1,000+ questions that I asked myself, the one question that carried the most weight was “Will you actually do it…?”

I could think of 1,000 reasons why not to do it. I mean, for starters, planning to just spend money for years on end without having any type of income stream is kind of crazy. This reason alone is enough to scare most people away.

But instead of feeding myself reasons about why I shouldn’t go, I started giving myself reasons about why I should.

Imagine the people you will meet. Imagine the different authentic foods you will try. Imagine the different landscapes you will get to see. Imagine the variety of cultures you will get to experience. Imagine the languages you will get to hear. Imagine the friends that you will make.

Relaxing a bit on the coast of Isafjordur, Iceland. I spent 6 months on that big ship off in the distance.

Thinking in this way helped, but I still wasn’t totally convinced that I could actually do something so bold.

Somewhere along the line, I stumbled across a quote that read “If you keep doing what you’ve always done, you’ll keep getting what you’ve always got…” W. L. Bateman

I must say, that quote really got me thinking. What if I continued as a slave to my job and never left. What if I never get to try new foods, learn new languages, experience new cultures, meet new people? What if I just did the same thing every day for, like, the next 30 years?! What would my life be like?

I could now only think about the negative impact on my life, with my decision to stay put and work like a dog for the rest of my life.

Relaxing at the pool, in the sun, in Cambodia.

And that’s when I stumbled across the final quote that broke the camel’s back: “Fear is temporary, regret is forever…”

It was at that exact moment when my mindset suddenly shifted. I realized that I needed to start putting my own happiness and priorities, first – rather than last. 

It was also at this moment that I realized that my fear of becoming an old man without truly having lived, scared the hell out of me!

So if I decide to leave my life behind, travel the world, and chase my dreams – what do I REALLY have to lose? Not a damn thing! I would only have things to gain.

I could no longer think of any good reasons to stop me from starting my journey. Not even one.

Anytime someone said, “yeah, but what if…” I just shrugged my shoulders, laughed, and told them that it was no longer a concern to me. 

The ONLY thing that I was going to start giving importance to from that day forward, was my happiness. Priority #1.

Watching the sunset while overlooking the Kirtankhola River in Barisol, Bangladesh.

And that, my friends, is how my journey began.

If you have read this far, I hope that you also start to look within yourself and start asking some serious questions about you, your life, and the priorities that you have set for yourself (or lack of).

And I sincerely hope that you have the courage to take some level of action to start following your passion in life, whatever/wherever it may be.

Remember: “The first step is the longest stride…” – Chad Kroeger 

“Time is running out, start living!” – Edges Of Earth


Hey - I'm Brock. I grew up in the USA, and I have been a full-time Solo Traveler since June of 2016. I am also a Travel Vlogger on YouTube where my primary focus is to simply hang out with local people around the world. My full story is here: About Me

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