Wow do you ever meet someone so inspiring that you can actually feel your heart smile? Well I have and this just happened a couple of weekends ago, when at my friend’s wedding this amazing person Jason Freeman sat next to my boyfriend Eric Mowrey and I. Next thing, I know we are learning how Jason has not allowed cerebral palsy and a speech impediment stop him from living his dreams. In fact, he is an inspirational speaker and a bravery coach – I mean come on now – is your heart smiling now. I asked Jason to please share his incredible journey to inspire all of you – so please join us on Jason’s heart smiling journey below.
1) What is your Passion + Purpose = World Change formula
Since I was a little kid, I’ve known in my heart that my purpose was to make big changes in the world for the good of all. Simple enough. Yet, maintaining the passion to do this has been infinitely more tricky. For much of my life, I endeavored to be a perfectionist, only to discover that perfectionism has a way of exhausting passion. Finally, I had the idea that my passion would be much more nourished if I did my imperfect best on a daily basis. Doing Our Imperfect Best means that even when we do our best, there will often be mistakes, rough edges and uncertainties along the way. If we embrace these mistakes, rough edges and uncertainties as grand learning opportunities of the journey, instead of resisting them, we have the power to move forward and keep our passion flowing. I believe that this alignment of passion and purpose very naturally creates significant change in the world.
2) How did you uncover your passion and purpose?
For me, having deep purpose without the passion to bring it alive, turned my purpose into a painful and guilt-ridden pipe dream. I figured if only things had been different, THEN I would be passionate about my life. But the fact was that I lost some oxygen at birth. The formal name for this type of birth trauma is cerebral palsy. This injury caused me to developed a pronounced speech impediment and some coordination differences. I felt completely alone in my differences, and was overwhelmed by the unfairness of it all. As I began to give myself freedom to do my imperfect best, I started to appreciate that everyone has imperfect circumstances of one sort or another. The trick is instead of using our circumstances as excuses, to learn to use our them as jet fuel that kindles our passion and propels our purpose forward.
3) What steps did you take to live your passion and purpose?
About ten years ago, I started to do things that seemed very unlikely given who I was. I began going to yoga classes. I committed to becoming a professional speaker so that my audiences could enjoy more freedom to be their imperfect best- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tMfdUYl47Bo. Along the way, I became a Bravery Coach- http://www.jasonwfreeman.com/bravery-coaching/. Most recently, my first book Awkwardly Awesome Embracing My Imperfect Best was released earlier this year.- https://www.amazon.com/Awkwardly-Awesome-Embracing-Imperfect-Best/dp/0998734403 With all this success, still the biggest step I take each day is to do my imperfect best.
4) I talk a lot about putting together the pieces of your passion puzzle to create the life of your dreams? How do you feel that you have done this?
I’m still surprised to realize that I have indeed put together the life of my dreams because the life I envisioned in my dreams ten years ago is not the life I live today. Back then, I envisioned that I would be married by now. I’m currently single. I also envisioned that by this point I would enjoy huge financial results from my business. This has definitely not happened yet. Yet, this year I’ve felt more consistently happy and productive than I’ve ever been in my life. I also feel more healthy than I did when I was 20. This happiness, productivity, and feeling of well-being ripples out and allows me to positively impact a great many people. I’m confident that the relationship with a significant other and the financial wealth will come, but neither have been needed to live my dream life.
5) What advice do you have for others who are looking to uncover and live their passion and purpose?
Uncover your passion and purpose by daring to live the life you truly want to live, imperfect best style. This is not always easy work. The perfectionistic voice inside of you will scream at you, tell you to ignore your desires for growth and go on doing what you are already doing. Even if what you’re currently doing is not fulfilling the perfectionistic voice likes it because it’s safe and you already have skill doing it. You have an opportunity to love this perfectionistic voice and it’s desire to keep you safe. If you don’t love your perfectionistic voice you will probably go with war with it and such wars are costly. Once you’ve listened to and loved the perfectionistic voice, you then have a choice: Follow the bidding of that perfectionistic voice or to do your imperfect best. This is an imperfect choice. Sometimes you may decide one way. Sometimes you may decide the other. But through this very human process, may you fuel your passion, bring your purpose to life and change the world for the betters.
I love stories like Jason’s. If you have an awesome Passion + Purpose = World Change story to share – please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and please visit my website www.careerswithwings.com for more inspiring story and to join our Passion + Purpose = World Change community and receive a complimentary copy of your own soul searching questions.