Lynn and Doug Nodland

Doug and Lynn Nodland

What are you passionate about?

We hope you have something you feel passionate about because passion can make life a lot more fun, and may even lead to finding your life purpose.

Lately we’ve noticed lots of cars pulling boats to the lakes. People are passionate about getting out on water. That got us thinking about the meaning of passion.

What is passion? Passion is intense emotion about something, such as an activity, object or concept. It can be a conviction you feel strongly about. A lot of passions are hobbies like gardening, golfing, even singing or music. Here we’re talking about positive passions.

So, why is having passion important? You might think it’s not that necessary, but it can give you a reason to get up in the morning with a zest for life and motivation.

Companies try to get their employees engaged and passionate so they enjoy their work and are more productive. Personally, passion for something can add a lot to your life. If there are people who share your passion, it can be a way to do things together and make new friends. You continue to want to grow and learn and it keeps your mind sharp.

During difficult times, passion can help keep you going. It can also help you to discover and use your strengths to enjoy life and make a difference.

We talked to Gloria Lindberg, a Chanhassen neighbor, who has a couple of kayaks on top of her car. We asked her about kayaking and how her passion for the outdoors and the environment started. Gloria said, “It started at birth. Both my parents were involved in the outdoors. My mom was a fantastic gardener and sometimes fed the whole family year-round from her garden. My dad, at age 15, went into the woods for three months, by himself. He learned to really appreciate the world around him. I grew up with that sort of an attitude in our house.”

Gloria continued, “Then I went off to work and became a nurse and an executive. But when I retired, I thought ‘What am I going to do?’ Crafting didn’t do it for me! So, I found this Minnesota Naturalist Program through the University of Minnesota Extension and became a Minnesota master naturalist.”

About passion, Gloria shared, “In finding your passion, we told our kids when they graduated from high school, you don’t know what you are going to be. Find out what you love, then go out and make a living at it — and they all succeeded at that. I took that advice for myself and went out and bought my first kayak five years ago.

Then I found out that the Minnesota Land Trust needed people to volunteer to work on conservation easements. Most of them have water, so now I do primarily Aitkin County. It’s approximately 37% swampland, so now I’m the ‘Swamp Lady of Aitkin County.’”

Volunteering in her neighborhood has been important for Gloria, too, and a definite plus for her townhome association. Gloria added, “My study last year was forests and we live in an urban forest.” On her townhome landscape committee, she examines and monitors 169 trees.

Gloria also enjoys her passion for the outdoors by fishing and kayaking with her husband, Gary, and their dog, Joey. We noted that, being a responsible boater, Joey always wears a life vest when boating, too!

We see how, early on, Gloria had a couple of passions she followed. Her professional career was helping people and now, in retirement, she continues to help by caring for the environment so people can enjoy nature. Gloria uses her passion with a purpose to make her community and the world a better place.

How about you? What passion do you have or would like to develop?

Here are some ideas: If you have a passion, develop it more and enjoy it! If you don’t have a passion, we encourage you to explore what might be a fit for you.

Get out of your comfort zone and try something new and share it. Some people say that sharing an activity with a parent or grandparent positively influenced their life and they will never forget it.

Here’s an interesting quote by Terri Guillemets, “Chase down your passion like it’s the last bus of the night.” As you live your passion, you may learn that the power of passion can not only bring fun but it can also go deeper to further a purpose in your life and even make a difference in the lives of others.

Chanhassen residents, Doug and Lynn Nodland are success coaches and owners of The Balance Center. Doug and Lynn can be contacted at More information and videos at


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