Einstein found his passion because he wondered what a man traveling the speed of light on a spaceship if he looked out the window and saw a man standing still.
He daydreamed and doodled and found his passion.
Da Vinci found his passion drawing machines with wings that flapped like birds – the first illustrations of what 500 years later became planes. Just doodles. Thousands of them.
Charles Darwin found his passion playing with rocks halfway around the world.
He played with them, he kicked them around, he drew pictures of the tree of life around those rocks, for EIGHT YEARS, before returning to the land of adults where he accomplished his life’s work while all of the adults jeered in his path.
Mozart found his passion when he finally escaped the adulthood of a steady job in Salzburg, for the virility of Vienna where commanding operas and orchestras and singers and actors he created Don Giovanni, the opera that changed every piece of music that ever came after that.
Marie Curie found her passion, like so many of us, by again playing with rocks. Why did some rocks seem to be like the sun, their own source of light when all else around them was pitch black dark.
Like a child, she held them in her hand, she looked hard at them, she threw them. She studied them.
Mick Jagger had no musical talent at all but would collect blues records from America and he and his childhood friend Keith Richards would lie around listening to them.
When his parents sent him off to study at the London School of Economics, he was still listening to those records and scribbling down lyrics rather than paying attention to supply versus demand.
Mary Shelley wondered what it would be like if a machine had intelligence. She daydreamed.
She called her machine Frankenstein and made up stories about how people would treat such a hybrid human/machine.
Ada Lovelace wondered what it would be like to tell a machine what to do. Could such a machine ever exist?
Steve Jobs loved calligraphy and using a key from a captain crunch box to scam the phone system.
The common thread: everyone was playing like a child, but with the experience of an adult.