I am a strong believer that every person should have multiple things that they love, adore and are fully passionate about. When I say this, I don't just mean family, friends, significant others, or pets. While the people in your life are incredibly important, I assume and hope that everyone already has some worthwhile, wonderful people in their lives. But what I more often notice is a lack of passion in the day-to-day lives of many of people. Lots of people go to work or school all day, come home, do homework or projects, watch their favorite shows on Netflix and drag themselves to bed.

But in this type of a life, where is there passion for anything? This is existence, but not a truly fulfilling life. However, add a few hobbies, interests, and activities that you're passionate about, and suddenly your world is more positive and colorful. You have something to do when you're bored or stressed or unhappy. You have something to stimulate your mind or your body. You have something to create variety in your everyday world. I will always be an advocate for people caring deeply about things besides checking their phones and watching their favorite shows (not that those aren't enjoyable activities as well).


However, what bothers me even more than people without interests and passion are the people who, rather than spend time doing the things they love, choose to condemn the passions of others. Unless someone's hobby is physically harmful to others, why should they ever feel bad about the things they love? If the activities your neighbor participates in (be it a sport, collecting something, cosplay, anything) aren't things you also enjoy, who cares? Find another point of similarity and connect with them instead of judging them. We are all people, and we all deserve to be respected. Something that brings us joy should never also be criticized by the people in our lives or even a stranger on the internet.

I have a variety of hobbies and things that I personally love doing (though some get neglected in my busy schedule), but the one that I'm definitely most consistent with is reading. I read a at least a couple hours every day. I'm always reading upward of fifteen books at once, and I review them on my blog for the pure entertainment and experience of it. But even in the book-loving community, I sometimes sense that people judge certain genres and books more than others, convinced that their own preferences are much more sophisticated/intellectual/cool/unique/etc, and that that makes them a better person.

Personally, I read a whole lot of everything--popular fiction, less popular fiction, classics, creative nonfiction, fantasy, graphic novels, true crime, memoir, short stories, poetry, humor, young adult, travel, even children's books (seriously, I don't care if you're an adult--go back and reread your favorite childhood books; there are very few happier experiences). So why should I feel embarrassed about reading one thing over another, as long as I'm enjoying what I read and gaining something from it (whether that be knowledge, new perspective, entertainment, or a break from the stress of school)?

The same goes for every hobby, intellectual interest, activity, or source of entertainment. Huge classic film buff? Awesome. Huge sappy rom-com buff? Equally awesome. Love what you love--just love the things that you want! Don't let the popular or "cool" (whatever that means) opinion sway you away from something that actually makes you happy. Life is too hard and too short to ever avoid anything that's a source of positivity and happiness for you.

And please, remember never to diminish the joy that anything brings something else just because it's not something you love. You'd want and expect the same in return. Instead, keep on spreading love and joy!