Imagine one thing that could change your life once and for all. Could it be a new love, a lottery win, a unique work opportunity? Perhaps. However, those things are circumstantial. Is there anything you can actively do to transform your life? Yes. Find your passion and make it a profession.
I know what you think. Easier said than done, right?
And yes, you might find yourself continually losing motivation for your work. Or feel that your job tasks are boring and repetitive instead of creative. You’re always thinking about ways to escape reality and regain inspiration.
All the above are right, but you’re staying in your current job, afraid to take the risk. You convince yourself it’s temporary, and before you know it, years have passed. You’ve realized by now that your work isn’t fulfilling. But what you haven’t realized is this;
The more you stay at the wrong job, the more you’ll hinder your true creative potential.
And if that isn’t enough to inspire your determination, imagine this instead:
You get up at your own pace, excited for what’s about to come next. You don’t look at the watch, waiting for the time to end your shift. Your work hours make your day beautiful. And you don’t even notice how time goes by.
That, my friends, is called “flow.” Flow is the mental state in which a person performing some activity is fully immersed in a feeling of energized focus, full involvement, and enjoyment in the process of that activity. In essence, flow is characterized by the complete absorption in what one does and a resulting transformation in one’s sense of time.
A job is not a job anymore. It’s a passion, your passion that pays your bills.
But..what is my passion?
If you work for the wrong people or do something you hate, a passion that pays bills might sound like a dream. And if you’ve never tried to search for what you’re passionate about, it will probably keep being what it sounds like; a dream.
What is that one thing in life that inspires you the most? If you can think of many things to be passionate about, choose the one you want to master. If you still don’t know, then you should start by learning how to find your passion.
So, where do you start?
How to find your passion:
- Create opportunities for trying something new
- Find at least one activity during the day that makes you happy.
- Make a list of the things that you love reading about
- Embrace anything that sparks your interest
- Brainstorm with people that share your interests
- Research related things and prospects.
- Practice, and then keep practicing
- Leave space for constructive feedback and improvement.
- If you think you’ve failed, don’t quit.
- Try again
If you dare to dream, are open to anything creative that comes your way, and are determined to try and keep trying, you’ll probably discover one thing that you enjoy doing. Remember, the first and most essential step that will bring you closer to your goal is naturally knowing what you love. You can’t fake passion. If you already know what you love, you’re one step ahead of the game.
Many of us had one thing as children that we loved doing. And most of the time, that thing died along with our childhood. Go back if necessary, and ask yourself, what would you try if you knew that you wouldn’t fail?
Then go ahead and try that thing.
However… not everything you enjoy or love doing can turn into a profession. It’s crucial to follow specific steps before you make final and life-changing career decisions. There are examples of passion that can make money and others that can’t. If you know your passion, how can you tell if it can create the right career for you?
You can figure it out by answering and trying the following:
Is there a demand for your creativity?
I knew I enjoyed traveling, reading, and writing. I was writing fiction stories, poems, my feelings. And then I kept asking myself, what else am I passionate about? How can I make money out of those things? I knew that those passions wouldn’t create a career themselves. I had to determine the demand – specific people who need my skills to cover a need.
Now, I’m not saying that you can’t make money by pursuing your artistic interests entirely. You can. Most of us think that the world doesn’t need more bloggers, painters, poets, writers, actors, dancers, and singers. But the world needs art, and art is infinite. There is space to find your passion and act on it.
However, suppose you want to be strategic and methodic about turning your passion into a full-time career. In that case, you need to be open-minded, explore all the options, figure out alternatives, and have a business plan. To know your muse’s potential – how far you can go with your passion – you have to examine the size of the market that’ll ask for your services.
What else are you good at? How can you match your skills, passions, and market needs?
I knew I was good at digital marketing. During my first job, I learned how to work with affiliates and online brands. I just needed to find a way to combine my creative writing, wellness obsession, travel passion, and digital marketing skills.
Can you think of similar ways you can market your hobbies?
Create a business plan
A business plan for your passion is the compass to success. It is the bigger picture of your muse. A plan can help you determine your mission, vision, target audience, service, competition, and monetization tactics. Every time you’ll feel lost, you’ll turn to it for help.
You can write down short-term and long-term steps, or whether you want to pursue a freelancing career or build a business from scratch. Even if you’re going to do freelancing, you might need to create a site to promote your services or specific actions to outrank your competition and reach your target audience.
Whether you want to build a business or not, remember, you’re monetizing your passion. And that probably means you’ll have to follow a business leader’s mindset anyway.
Don’t panic. Creating a business plan is easier than you think. The simpler, the better.
Beat the competition
After creating your business plan, you’ve probably determined the competition in your niche. Is there anything that your competitors have neglected? What is your competitive advantage?
Beating the competition requires specific steps. You first have to follow the steps of your competitors and make a competition analysis. Then you have to ensure you know your market broadly, as well as your target audience. Finally, think of ways you can differentiate your business, either by narrowing down your niche or including additional offers.
Remember, you always have to make your services better than the existing ones. Many passionate people like you are actively working every day towards their businesses to improve them. Finding ways to differentiate and include services that your competitors have neglected is crucial for your success.
Enrich your knowledge and become qualified
You could find your passion, but can you be consistent with the knowledge and professionalism required to make it a career? People will be willing to pay for your services if they can see your expertise. Having a skill or talent may not be enough to deem you a professional, so you must acquire the necessary training by getting a formal education.
Take a day or a weekend while you’re in your current job for an online class or course. You can find online courses and credits for almost any interest or passion you want to pursue. Acquiring a certificate will make a difference to your customers, and your confidence will rise as you gain knowledge and expertise in a subject.
Remember, never stop learning. Ensure you’re aligned with all the updates in your field, and keep reading related books, news, and articles. There’s always space for improvement, and if you’re committed to dominating that space, chances are you’ll stand out.
Try the lean approach, and be open to suggestions.
In the book Lean Startup, Eric Ries teaches us something we always have to keep in mind; ” The fundamental activity of a startup is to turn ideas into products, measure how customers respond, and then learn to pivot or persevere.”
Don’t get stuck in an endless pursuit of improving your service, product, or business at the very early stages. You’ll most likely lose time and money.
Instead, begin by launching a viable version, testing the customer’s reaction, and improving it if it’s working or changing it if it isn’t.
It’s impossible not to adjust a new product to customer’s feedback and suggestions.
The feedback loop you’ll find yourself into when you try the lean approach will look something like this;
Find your passion and then market an idea around it, one that will accelerate a startup’s feedback loop.
Adopt this mindset for every process you’re following for your business. Whether you want to add services, change the business model, or even test a new approach. That mindset will inevitably bring us to the next step, which is…
Stay flexible, learn from mistakes, and pivot.
If you’re testing something new and it isn’t working, you need to learn how to be flexible. Analyze what has worked and what hasn’t.
Your road to success is not going to be precise. You need to mentally prepare for mistakes that will inevitably happen and allow adjustments along the way.
Advise, judgment and other people’s insights may teach you something. When you bring something new to the world, changes and mistakes are an integral part of the emotional risk. Remember, your success will come from other people’s responses.
What is a pivot?
Are we making sufficient progress to believe that our initial hypothesis about a product, service, or business is correct, or we need to make a significant change? Asks Eric Ries, the writer of the Lean Startup.
A significant change is called a pivot, which is a correction of our previous strategy. That correction is designed to test a new fundamental hypothesis about the product, system, or growth engine.
Don’t give up early.
It is normal to feel that you want to quit at some point. If the uncertainty is high, the results not rewarding, and your social cycle disapproving, you might wonder why did you start in the first place.
One thing here; Don’t give up.
Finding your passion and then turning it into a career requires motivation and emotional support.
It’s crucial to surround yourself with talented individuals who share similar struggles and help you make the right decisions. Finding a mentor, joining Facebook groups and communities, or asking for feedback are wise steps as sometimes your family or friends won’t empathize with your anxiety.
Make proactive steps towards your goal and comfort yourself by acknowledging that what you’re doing is not easy.
You have to know that giving up is the only way to fail. Keep telling yourself that your efforts will pay off, and celebrate small wins and accomplishments. Doing what you love requires sacrifices and tolerance toward risk and failures.