Lessons from Pixar’s Soul

LAST UPDATE ON June 28, 2023

“What makes you, YOU?”

After watching Pixar’s latest animation movie “Soul” I was captivated by all that goes into what makes a person unique. One’s personality, interests, passion, discovering that spark to life. Before reading on, I must warn you that there are spoilers ahead. If you have not seen the film, it’s best to catch the trailer to get an idea of what we’re about to explore.

The movie follows a Mr Joe Gardner, our main protagonist who navigates through life in hopes for a big break and to achieve his dream as a successful jazz pianist. A drastic turn of events lands him with an unborn soul in “the great before”. Before each soul gets their “earth pass” they each require finding their spark which gives them their personalities, interests and quirks. For some it’s music, for some it’s food, for others, archery, it could be anything!

That’s when I went into existential mode – What is it that gives my life that.. spark?

“Find the spark.”

I translated that into finding my passion. Referencing an assessment I did recently (Behavioural Attitudes Index) I it helped me unravel six dimensions of hidden motivations: I-SPEAK (inner awareness, spirituality/faith, power/political, economical, artistic, knowledge). Considering I always identified myself as someone creative, I expected my highest score to be in the “artistic” realm.

Instead.. “Wendy’s primary style is power/political” came up and I was surprised. Reading on, while I recognised that I have many interests such as music, singing, content creating, it struck me that it was the desire to influence others through my creative work that gave my life meaning!

“Life is full of possibilities. You just need to know where to look.”

While my life was filled with the vibrancy of the creative work I do, I truly only realised this spark/passion quite recently. I found myself thinking “How can I influence someone positively through the content I make?” “How am I displaying my values through my videos”. This eventually lead me to discover my purpose and find meaning in the work I do.

Perhaps the question you can ask yourself, where are you looking?

We are in the business of helping people discover themselves, how about we work together to discover that “spark”? 

We got to love how Pixar takes a complicated concept and makes it so easy to relate to and understand. Give it a watch and let me know what you think!

Article Contributed by Wendy, Programme Consultant at Lifeskills Institute