Amateurs and dilettantes


Willpower is for people who are still uncertain about what they want to do.*

Longing is the deepest and most ancient voice in the human soul.  It is the secret source of all presence and the driving force of all creativity and imagination: longing keeps the door open and calls towards us gifts and blessings of which our lives dream.**
(John O’Donohue)

In their original meanings, an amateur is one who loves what they do and a dilettante someone who takes delight in.   In exploring flow and identifying amateur scientists who made significant breakthroughs, Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi writes:

‘They simply did what they enjoyed doing.’^

At the end of our days, life doesn’t get better than this.  If we end up being paid for this and bring rigour to what we do, then we can count ourselves blessed.

We can all pursue what we love and delight in with rigour.  It may be not where the big money is found but there are lots of significant things big money isn’t interested in.

(*Helia, quoted in Ben Hardy’s These 20 Pictures Will Teach You More Than Reading 100 Books.)
(**From John O’Donohue’s Eternal Echoes.)
(^From Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi’s Flow.)

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