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THE PASSION PATH


Mission's Founder + Owner, Alison Brumfield Jones was recently a Program Speaker at Amazin Admins, an award event celebrating administrative professionals in Mobile. She was tasked to share her views on finding and incorporating PASSION in the workplace. Here's what she had to say...


"My name is Alison Brumfield Jones. And it is my greatest privilege to be the Owner and Founder of Mission Fitness.


I’m here to talk to you about how I found my passion and, hopefully, help you find and incorporate yours too.

I was born + raised in a small town in Mississippi not so far from where we're standing today. After graduating from Ole Miss with a bachelor's in Psychology, I had no idea what I wanted to do. I felt entirely unprepared for a life outside of books and classes. Entirely unprepared for a career. Yet, I did all things I was “supposed” to do. I worked from the time I was 14. Went to college. Got good grades. Joined clubs. Did community service. I checked all the boxes but still felt utterly lost.


In all the years I spent educating and preparing myself for life not once did it occur to me to include passion on that list of boxes to check.


It never occurred to me that we need a job that feeds us but also feeds us.


That the thing I would be giving the best of myself and the most of my time should be something I LOVED.


Like so many others, I wound up in a profession offering the most dollars and zero sense.

I was hired as a stock broker for a large investment firm. They trained me, invested in me [no pun intended] and pointed me in a direction. I studied and passed the Series 7, Series 63, and insurance license exams. I worked tirelessly to prove I was worthy of this position. Worthy of this place at the table. My parents were so proud. I was proud. My grandmother would brag on me to anyone who would listen. Even dead relatives were pronounced proud of the position I held.

But the more I worked the more empty I became.

The job gave me clout but no depth.

A title but no purpose.

It gave me incentives but no fuel.


And yet I stayed, feeling unfulfilled and disconnected and dreading the next day.


I felt bound by expectations and feared the disappointment it would bring if I walked away. But mostly I stayed because if I wasn't a stock broker...then who was I? My identity was so tied to a title as much as I despised my job, equally, I felt lost without it.


I took a leap of faith and decided the unknown was better than the present and

quit my job in search of my passion over a paycheck.


I dabbled in everything from photography to graphic design. I started a charity for shelter animals. I even enrolled in college courses and began studying for the GRE. While flirting with all these potential paths I began to exercise and somewhere in the process I began to feel like myself again.


It was in a Pilates class my instructor asked if I’d considered getting certified to teach. I like to think she saw a potential in me I hadn't considered but she likely just needed a sub. ;) Regardless, of the intent, I believed her.


Long story short, I did get a Pilates certification. And then a few more. And 5 years later I opened Mission Fitness.


Mission was created to bridge the gap between health and heart. As a place to sweat...for good. As a safe space for brave people.


My experience taught me be truly well we have to actively work the mind + body thru movement and the soul through service.


Today Mission stands as the only local fitness studio with a community outreach component as part of our business model.


We are the only fitness studio dedicating massive efforts toward inclusion, diversity and equity.


Mission offers memberships on trade and we recently announced our first ever fully-funded annual inclusivity scholarship ALL FOLX.


And since inception we’ve raised and donated over $75,000 to local non-profits.


I can tell you about awards and accolades but that’s not what drives me...or even what matters.


It's my passion that drives me. My passion for people...all people. For authentic connection. For a supportive community. For helping people stay healthy and well for a lifetime. For creating hope with help.


It’s our passion that drives us to our purpose.


Our innate gifts lead us to what we’re put on this earth to do. Your passion is a hint from the universe. Sending you down a path.


I am not the smartest person in this room or any other. I am not special. Or gifted. Or favored.


I am here only because I stopped listening to everyone else and heeded my inner voice instead. Because I realized failure wasn't the worst possible scenario. Because I permitted myself to make mistakes and admit I didn't know and ask for help. Because I believed there was more. Because I believed I was more.


Here are 4 THINGS that helped me find my passion and, eventually, my purpose…I hope they help you too.


……………………………………………


THE PASSION PATH

1. GET FIRED [UP]

Figure out what you love and find a way to make it your life. If you can’t make a livelihood doing what you love…so what. Your passion becomes a side hustle. It becomes a daily respite. Nothing has to look like anything. But it is always on the table. That’s your fuel. Make it non-negotiable.

2. FRIEND UP

Surround yourself with people you admire. People who require you to rise and will assist in your assent. If the people you choose are less than, you will be too. We are the company we keep. Dump the foes. Find a mentor. Friend up.


3. WORK FOR SOMETHING [NOT SOMEONE]

People change. Co-workers move. Bosses get promotions. Don’t allow your trajectory to be tied to anyone else. Your passion is exclusively yours. If you are doing what you are meant to do the right people will cross your path. But, if you’re leading a life you love it doesn’t matter who stays or goes.


4. LEARN. THEN LEAD.

Just because you’re passionate about something doesn’t make you a pro. Nothing is beneath you. Everything is a lesson on what to do or not do. Every interaction an opportunity to grow. Lean into learning. Become a perpetual student. And when you possess the knowledge…show others what you learned.

Each of us possess a wealth of potential. For many it remains untapped. Fears of failure, self-imposed limitations, comparisons, keep us rooted in places we don’t belong. Places we can never grow. Places we can never become.


Know this…you are capable of everything.


Find your passion...the thing that you can’t live without. And find a way to make it your life."

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