Having a career that excites you as well as pays the bills is an important thing to prioritize in life. While breaking out of the daily lull can be exciting, it is vital to make sure you have some sort of plan. Of course, everyone wants to make a living doing what they love, but how does one get started?
This article hopes to alleviate some of that stress and worry by outlining some of the major points you may want to consider when thinking about making a career out of something you love.
Discovering/Rediscovering Your Passions
The first step in transforming your passions into a career is rediscovering what your passions actually are. It’s genuinely surprising to find that many people have forgotten what they like to do!
Spend time pondering what makes you truly happy and fulfilled. Is there anything you can think of that you could see yourself enjoying daily? Do you love cooking, gardening, painting, or fixing things? Can you see yourself doing those things all day, every day? It is crucial to find a balance between passion and productivity.
Explore Your Options
Try making a list of things that you are fond of. It can include activities you do in your free time, something you used to do when you were a child, and anything in-between. Try not to place limits on your thinking. If lists aren’t your thing, no problem. You know yourself better than anyone! Where do you do your best thinking? You could go for a walk, listen to music, journal, go for a swim, etc.
Hobbies vs. Potential Career
The last thing you want to do when determining if a career is right for you is ruin the enjoyment you get from your hobbies. Often, you can find ways to incorporate your love of a hobby into your career without relying on the pursuit alone for financial stability.
For example, you can love photo editing, but that doesn’t mean editing photos should necessarily be your career. Instead, you could incorporate that love of editing into a Graphic Design career while continuing to edit pictures on the side for fun!
Think realistically about your future and what you want in your career. You may already have an idea about what you’d like to pursue, and if so, that’s great! But things are constantly changing. The wind may blow you in a different direction, and plans have a way of getting altered.
So maybe you can ride the wind and see where it goes. You may arrive somewhere even better than you expected. In fact, you may end up with the career you’ve been dreaming of!
Pros vs. Cons
Make a pros/cons list! It’s a great way to get started and may help facilitate your progress when deciding what is in your best interest.
Speaking of lists, you don’t need to write everything down on paper. We live in the digital age, after all! There are plenty of apps that will help with listmaking, and it also makes it easy to edit your list on the fly.
Do Your Research
Make sure to do your research! It’s important to know if there is a need for your potential career in your area or the region where you would like to work/live. Also, consider the possibility of expanding your research into networking.
Try reaching out to others who have done what you are doing via social media. There may be additional resources, and many people are willing to help you navigate the various challenges that come with the territory. You won’t know until you look!
Questions To Ask Yourself
If you’re drawing a blank when it comes to uncovering your passions and career options, consider these questions:
- Would I be happy doing this every day?
- Will I make enough money to survive?
- Could I make enough money to live comfortably with the lifestyle I desire?
- Am I willing to invest time/money into the potential training and certifications required?
- Am I okay starting at the bottom?
- Can I manage constructive criticism?
- How could this potentially affect my loved ones?
- Do I have the time and means to pursue a passion right now?
- What is my end goal?
- Would I be willing to move to where there is a need for my new profession?
- How will I be able to keep myself motivated?
If you’re feeling stumped or unsure if a new career path is for you, talk about it! Contemplating changing careers or not knowing where to start is overwhelming for anyone. Chat with your significant other, your friends, or your family.
Talking it out can be a great way to step back and look at the big picture. You may be surprised at the amount of support you could receive by just being more open with others.
After exploring and rediscovering your passions, try adding them to your daily routine! For example, try to fit in an hour or two a day to analyze how you feel when participating in certain activities.
Remember to take it slow to avoid burning yourself out. If you feel overwhelmed, sit back and try to figure out why. Is it your schedule? Are you not as fascinated or interested in the pursuit as you thought you were? Be honest with yourself, and the answers will come to you.
Whether you’re in the exploration phase trying to choose a new career or you know exactly what you want to do, it is critical to manage your time wisely!
It’s easy to get excited about the endless possibilities, but you have to ensure that self-care and breaks have a place in your life too! Taking care of yourself, whatever that means for you, will help you think more clearly.
Expand on what you already do
If you already have some hobbies that bring in a little extra cash, think about ways you could make those pursuits even more profitable. For example, do you sell handmade items or make money taking surveys? Is there any room for growth with these activities?
If you can find something that motivates you, makes you strive to be better, and brings in some income, you’ve already made more progress than you think.
Changing your career or starting from scratch can be an overwhelming and stressful experience, but it doesn’t have to be. If you follow even some of these steps, do your research, explore your passions, options, practice time management, etc., you will develop your own ideas, techniques, and ways of discovering what makes you happy. In return, you’ll feel as though you can see the big picture and gain some peace of mind.
Remember that this is a process, and it’s essential to be patient. Also, try your hardest to work with constructive criticism and feedback and make small steps to improve. Progress is progress no matter how small, and great things take time!
Life is a delicate balance of consideration, love, and compassion, but those things also apply to how you treat yourself. Plenty of people before you have turned their passions into their work! So consider your happiness, and make sure it’s truly a priority in your life.