You know the old saying: do what you love, and you’ll never work a day in your life. That isn’t something previous generations used to consider – and props to them for laying the groundwork for all the opportunities that succeeding generations now enjoy.
These days, it’s possible to make money doing what you love. And it doesn’t have to be some far-fetched pipe dream. Not everyone dreams of becoming a highly-paid pro basketball player or billionaire tech genius (although both are still pretty sweet!). Some of us will be content making money from our hobbies or interests.
Whatever your dream is, I’ll be offering some bits of advice on how to make money doing what you love
Know What You Actually Want
First, you need to have a clear idea what it is you want to achieve. And you’ll be surprised that most people only have a vague idea what they want. For example, “to own a successful business” is a pretty vague goal. For it to be actionable, it needs to be as specific as possible. So you might want to revise that statement to something like “own a small but profitable cafe that serves food inspired by local recipes.” Now that’s a goal!
I’m not saying don’t dream. If your goal is to create the next Facebook, by all means go for it. We wouldn’t have these popular apps if it weren’t for people crazy enough to go for it. But do know that for every Facebook, there’s are countless counterparts that didn’t make it. That shouldn’t be a reason for you to stop dreaming. But do temper your expectations a bit. Knowing that things don’t always work according to plan will help you bounce back from failure.
Get Out of Debt
Working on a dream requires a substantial financial investment. I liken it to taking care of a baby. And in many ways it is – you’re taking what you love, and nurturing it until it becomes something big and sustainable. And that, let’s be realistic here, costs a lot of money. When you’re buried in debt, it might be a good idea to focus on getting out of debt first before you channel your money into something else. That way, you don’t multiply your financial burden.
Know How to Monetize What You Do
Even if your passion is in something obscure like origami, contact juggling, or flatland BMX, you need to find a way of making money off it. Otherwise, that’s not a career, that’s a hobby. Nothing wrong with that, of course. But the goal of this article is to show you how to make money doing something you love.
It would be impossible to tell you how to monetize your specific skill or interest in this blog post. But I will tell you that whatever it is you want to make money off, chances are someone has made a career off it, or some variation thereof. So do your research, learn what people have done and how they built their respective careers, then get out there and blaze your own trail!
Know How to Compromise
I believe there’s a big chance you will accomplish your dreams (See? I’m rooting for ya!). However, there’s also a big chance that you’ll have to give a few things to get to that point. Having to sacrifice is inevitable, but let’s focus on compromise for now. Earlier I asked you to have a super-specific goal. Sometimes, things won’t turn out 100% the way you wanted. And that’s okay!
Plan, Plan, Plan
Having a goal to strive for isn’t enough; you gotta have a path that takes you from Point A to Point B… although if we’re being realistic, Point A is the beginning, and there are so many points between that and your goal. So it’s more like Point A to Point Z, and you need to know what you need to do in every point in between. That’s planning. You can’t get too detailed when it comes to planning, but do have some wiggle room for when things don’t always work according to plan (see the previous item).
Don’t Neglect Your Financial Obligations
This one is a no-brainer, but it bears mentioning here. It’s awesome that you’re trying to make money doing what you really love. But it’s also way too easy to get a case of tunnel-vision when working towards a goal. But try not to neglect your financial responsibilities. This is doubly true when you’re also raising a family, or have important bills to pay. So try to be a responsible human before you throw caution to the wind and try to make money doing what you love. We all have dreams, and are willing to sacrifice for them. But the people around us shouldn’t have to.
Patience is Key
It takes time to build a career around doing something you like. Sometimes it takes longer, sometimes it doesn’t. Sometimes you think you’re making it, then things crumble. After which, you need to dust yourself off and try again. Either way, you need to be patient when working towards your goal. Success doesn’t always happen overnight. But since you’re doing something you love, it’s safe to say that you should enjoy the journey as much as the end goal. And isn’t that why you decided to make money doing what you love? So enjoy the journey, be patient, and try not to get burnt-out.
If you managed to make money doing what you love, congratulations. You’re one of the luckiest people on the planet. Now, don’t forget to pay it forward. Teach people how to do the same thing, give them advice and words of encouragement. Give them the opportunities that you didn’t have. It’s always great to help other people, but this could also be of benefit to you. When the time comes that you’ll need help – and that time always comes, no matter how successful you are – you can rest assured there will be people who got your back.