I’m not entirely sure if I’m the best person to be writing on the topic seeing as how I’m not completely convinced of my sanity. But then again that may very well make me the best candidate for the job. The difference between being passionate and being crazy is often hazy at best.
The most passionate individuals often seem to be nuts. The most gifted and successful artists, entrepreneurs, scientists, you name it, are often said to be a little crazy.
I sometimes think that in order to get anywhere in life you need to be a whole lot passionate and a little bit crazy. Without being a little bit crazy, you don’t stand a chance against all the other passionate nutcases out there gunning for the same glory.
Being crazy crazy can take many different forms – just about all of which involve some sort of mental health issue. Being passionate crazy, on the other hand, is all about pushing things to their limits, risking everything in order to get your hands on your prize.
Of course, being passionate crazy does sometimes lead to being crazy crazy. You can only push so far before you push yourself off the deep end. The problem is that the more passionate people are, the more they feel that they need whatever it is they are after and the more they will be willing to give up and to sacrifice in order to get it.
This is why passionate individuals often look like sh*t. They don’t sleep much. They often don’t eat well or exercise or do much of anything other than that which they are passionate about. True passion often takes the form of obsession and while light obsession can be quite healthy, intense obsession can eventually kill you. Or rather, can have you kill yourself by ignoring all your other physical needs.
It’s when deep passion turns to deep obsession that the most passionate individuals must be wary. Which, to be honest, can be very difficult because obsessions take over our realities. We begin to perceive our lives and our existence as being centered and grounded by our passions. The lines between our passions and ourselves begin to blur and we begin to lose ourselves to our work. Being passionately crazy can turn into being completely crazy without much notice.
People often want things so badly that they refuse to accept the reality of things, which is that they will never get them. It’s when we lie to ourselves and make ourselves believe that something that is impossible is possible, when rationale and logic go out the door, that we cross that fine line and become textbook insane – believing the impossible to be possible.
In order to remain sane and passionate, the only thing that we can do is keep a balance in our lives and to be honest with ourselves as much as possible. Obsessions are consuming, but as human beings, we have needs that must be met. Otherwise, we only suffer for it. And our passions likewise suffer. In order to be able to achieve anything, we must be functioning at peak performance levels.
We must feel our best in order to do our best – this often gets lost somewhere in translation. The more passionate we are, the more we like to believe that we can survive off our passions alone, but the truth is that we can’t.
We can’t ignore the remainder of the world and solely focus on our one passion, our one obsession. Those that do often end up dead way before their time. You may think that you can push yourself to the edge without falling off, but as any daredevil will tell you, eventually you will push too far. You’re only lying to yourself if you think yourself to be invincible. Remember: you are only human. You are a living thing that functions in a physical world governed by laws. Ignore those laws and you will pay the price.
I don’t know what it is, but the more passionate people are, the more they like to ignore reality. Some call this a reality distortion field – a bubble that they live in where things work by their rules. This is a great tool to have, but only as long as you keep in mind that all those things outside of your bubble still function by the rules of the universe. Hoping that something will turn out the way you want it to be won’t make it turn out the way that you want it to be.
Believing something to be true that isn’t true doesn’t make it true. It just makes you crazy. The more passionate the individual, the more prone he or she is to ignoring certain facts and believing opinions to be actual facts.
Opinions are opinions and facts are facts. Distinguish between the two and you’ll stay passionate crazy and avoid going crazy crazy. It’s a fine line that separates the two, but staying on the better side can and should be done.
Photo via A Beautiful Mind