Turn Your Passion Into A Living
We all want to have a job that we love — something that would get us excited about getting up and going to work in the morning…right? Who doesn’t want that? But this is often far from the reality we actually do experience.
So what does it really take to make this happen?
Finding your dream job or life's work may not be as hard as we all make it out to be if we decide to take action towards this goal. By coming up with a strategy for making it happen, you may just surprise yourself with the ideal job (or business). Here are a few simple tips on how you can get started on the road to a more fulfilling work life.
1. Find out what it is you love to do.
You know yourself the best. A few questions you may want to ask yourself: What are your skills and interests? What is your passion? What do you like to spend time doing? The first step may be the trickiest to get through, but this exercise should set the tone for you. Brainstorm about what it is that you would love to do. If you already know what that is, then fantastic! If not, then write every idea down that you come up with and explore those ideas fully. Get creative. Make long lists and remember that no answer is wrong. Explore every avenue of interest that you have and consider what it is that could get you excited and motivated every day. For instance, if you enjoy writing, perhaps you'd like to try to make money blogging or to work on self publishing a book. If you enjoy developing software, then there are many platforms through which you can seek creative growth: how about developing iPhone or Facebook applications?
2. Start small, try things out and take action!
Next, get to it. Start small and test the waters (so to speak) by doing side gigs, by freelancing or by teaching lessons in something that you’re good at. Advertise your services on Craigslist or other job forums. Find ways to fit these efforts into your schedule and make time for them. If you need money to fund your venture, budget for this by building a "venture fund" in a free savings account that addresses a specific savings goal. If you need to finance your ideas and happen to have good credit, you can opt to apply for a loan at a peer to peer lender like Lending Club. But without taking action, your dream job remains just that...a part of your dreams and ongoing hopes. This seems obvious and intuitive, but many people never realize their goals because of inaction. You have to make time to make change. By taking these steps, you can validate and turn this career into a reality for yourself.
3. Find ways to support your new career.
As you start establishing yourself in your area of work, find other ways to support your passion. Teach lessons in your chosen field and grow your knowledge in this area. See if you can become an expert in this field. Join networking groups that could use or refer your services. Continue to research and learn what you can about your profession or career on a regular basis, as it's important to keep abreast with the latest developments in your field.
4. Continue to promote yourself professionally.
Join related professional groups that are financially feasible and realistic. Promoting yourself online has never been easier than it is now. On the web, you have many free avenues that allow you to keep marketing yourself (e.g. Craigslist is free; blogs are usually free to create; there are free classifieds in online local publications; you can advertise in your local paper, etc.).
5. Gain an online presence.
You may be interested in creating an online presence or joining specific online interest groups or forums to help you enhance your learning and grow your professional network. Build a website that becomes your calling card (e.g. put your website on your physical business card as well) and put samples of your work on your web site. Make sure that you supply sufficient contact information so that your customer base can easily get in touch with you.
And finally, share your aspirations with the people you know — who knows, someone in your own circle may turn out to be someone who could help you with your endeavors. Word of mouth is and has always been the best way to build a business or career, and if you’re not capitalizing on this, you could be losing out. Make sure your family, friends, associates, etc. know about your business or employment position. When you love what you do, it will be obvious, and you’ll see that people will notice.
Have fun getting there! It can be a very fun journey.
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