July 9 – Enthusiasm

Hannah Senesh said, “One needs something to believe in, something for which one can have whole-hearted enthusiasm.” It is our dreams that give our lives purpose; our passions that make our lives meaningful. We all need something to strive for, something into which we can pour our hearts and souls. Enthusiasm is often viewed as , the brightly optimistic mistaken for naive. Yet it is the enthusiastic who truly embrace life and experience it to the fullest. 

orange and white koi fish near yellow koi fish

On the topic of enthusiasm, Anne Wilson Schaef writes: 

“Several years ago, I made a drastic decision for myself. I decided that I would do only work that I was enthusiastic about. I was a psychotherapist, speaker, and workshop leader then. This decision was very frightening for me, since I was a single parent and had many financial responsibilities. 

I decided not to accept any clients about whom I wasn’t enthusiastic. I would not do any speeches or workshops just because of the money, or prestige, or ego. I would only do what seemed right for me to do. I would do only things that intuitively seemed related to the meaning and purpose of my life. I feared I would end up a derelict, a bad lady, and starve, yet, I have had more money since that decision that I ever had before. I still live my life based on that decision.” 

We are only guaranteed one shot at this life. Why would we spend our time doing anything that doesn’t fill us with joy? It can be scary to say no, turning down opportunities for money, prestige, or power at a time when we may need them most. We might ask, Who are we to turn down an opportunity? We should be grateful for all that we have. Yet in order to be truly fulfilled, we must pursue our dreams. Ask yourself, Is this something that aligns with my values? Can I be proud of this choice? Choosing what we allow into our lives is a difficult but worthwhile effort, and when we make that decision, we demonstrate trust in the universe. We trust that we will find more work, more money, and more opportunities will come our way in the future. The chances we are given don’t end with a single no. 

Enthusiasm makes life worth living. Our hobbies and work give us an outlet into which we can pour creativity, dedication, and effort. Through these we grow, and in growing we find happiness. Everyone deserves to realize their own happiness, and that comes from pursuing things that make us excited to be alive. 

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