It’s no secret that following your passion has been career advice for some time, perhaps for that past two or three decades. Figure out what you are passionate about and everything will work out fine, is the prevailing message. But is it good advice?

Passion is not a job, nor an opportunity.

It’s not a career plan, nor is it even that good a life plan. If you list all the things you want to do in your life, you’ll probably find that not all of them can be called a passion. Yet, when you look back, I’m sure you’ll see wonderful experiences that you loved that had nothing to do with how passionate you were at the time.

For example, when I was younger, I loved ballet. I had dreams about becoming a ballerina. You could say I was passionate about dance. Did I become a dancer? Alas, no, and I’m no longer passionate about it either. After that came gymnastics.

I’ve always had a mental list of experiences I wanted to enjoy that lived somewhere in the back of my brain.

For a while I was passionate about living in France, so I did that. Is France a passion for me now? While I have some wonderful memories, it’s no longer a passion.

A few years ago, I became passionate about writing novels, and have done that. I’ve always been passionate about helping people achieve their dreams but that has played out in a variety of ways—Travel agent, hospitality sales, writing coach, book designer, motivational speaker, and others.

The passion itself has never been a plan.

It’s what I value and how I respond to the opportunities that align with my values that determine when and where passion arises.

Trying to find your passion can get you stuck fast. If you’re afraid to move forward because you might miss that shining path, you can exclude yourself from some fabulous experiences simply because you fear missing your “true” passion.

Here is another approach.

Try something. Find out where there is a need you can fill and go be useful. Be generous with your skills and pick something that looks interesting.

Start down the road and see where it leads. You’ll soon find out if you’re passionate about it and in the meantime, you’ll have had some great, and maybe character-building, experiences.

You don’t even have to have a plan in place. Just follow the opportunities and coincidences. When you are open to opportunities, it’s amazing how they start to show up. When they do, don’t let them pass you by.

Shift out of park and take some action. Your passion will show up.