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The Key to Success: Understanding Your Passion

By Maxwell Leadership | October 21, 2022
The Key to Success: Understanding Your Passion

What makes people successful? What motivates them to take risks, go the extra mile, and work hard to achieve their goals?

It isn’t talent, intelligence, education, or position. It’s passion.

When you possess passion, it doesn’t matter to you if you fail. It doesn’t matter how many times you fall down. It doesn’t matter if others are against you. Nothing deters you. You keep going. 

Why does understanding your passion make such a great difference? And how can you develop your own passion?

Boni’s Story

Boni McClendon is a Maxwell Leadership Certified Team Member and a leader who lives with great passion. Growing up, she recognized the need for positive change in her community. 

Boni shared, “I am the first to graduate from college in my family. I lived in just a working-class neighborhood and I always wanted to help people. I always wanted to do something. I felt like when I heard problems discussed in my family, I thought, ‘Gosh, there’s got to be a way to do it.’”

While she didn’t vocalize her passion for helping others then, her desire never went away.  

Boni continued, “I didn’t have a platform. I didn’t have anything I could really wrap my passion around. I didn’t have anybody that I knew that would listen to me.”

It wasn’t until Boni joined Change Your World Transformation Tables and began to understand and develop her values that she recognized she could do something with her passion.  

“The Transformation Tables, they brought all those three things together. And now I realized that what I always wanted to do, that deep feeling, I just wanted to make a difference. It was that I wanted to be a leader and I wanted to change lives. I wanted to add value to people. I wanted to make them better. I wanted to make things better. And now I’m in the ranks of people all over the globe that are doing just that. I found my company. I found my place right here.”

As a Maxwell Certified Team Member, Boni is now making a difference in the world by transforming leaders through her speaking, training and coaching business. It all began with developing her passion!

So, how can you develop your passion and begin making a difference? Here are three ways:


The difficulties of life and the challenges of circumstance cause many people to lose sight of what they love to do, and as a result, they lose their passion. Think back to when you started your career or to when you were a child. What were you able to spend hours doing? What really got you excited? 

As Boni shared, thinking back to her childhood community helped her realize she had a heart for helping others. Maybe you have a similar story! Try to recapture your enthusiasm and find a way to incorporate those activities in your life.


There’s an old saying in English: birds of a feather flock together. If you spend time with passionate people, you will become a more passionate person.

When Boni joined Change Your World Transformation Tables, she met once a week for 12 weeks with likeminded people who also wanted to make a difference. They connected on their values and shared their personal experiences in a meaningful and encouraging way. 

Start spending time around people who enjoy life and love what they do. John Maxwell calls these people “firelighters.” The fire of their passion can spread and light a fire in you!


If you are doing work you are passionate about, be grateful. Do it with all your heart and share your passion with others.

If you are not passionate about your current work, look for ways your work may contribute to what matters to you. Or begin looking for ways to make a change. Maybe you can volunteer in your area of interest. Maybe you can work toward a new position in your organization that more closely aligns with your passion. Maybe there is an opportunity for you to pursue a different kind of work. Be open to new possibilities. 

Anytime you can work doing what you love, you work with greater excellence, you are more productive, and you have a greater opportunity to add value to others.


Building a foundation of good values, like passion, is key to experiencing success and significance in every part of life.

How are you developing your values?

If you don’t have a plan, click here to start a Change Your World Transformation Table to develop your values and create a community of “firelighters” to keep you going.

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