“Turn your passion into a job, and the money will follow.”
“Do what you love, and you’ll never work a day in your life.”
These sayings sound nice, but unfortunately, they hold little truth for most people. Turning your favorite hobby into a money-maker might seem like a good plan — but it can be a horrible mistake. Here’s why:
Your Passion Fizzles When It’s Work
When you’re passionate about something, it’s easy to fantasize about doing it every day and watching the money roll in. It will bring meaning to your life, right?
When you turn your passion into a job, it becomes just that: work. You’re no longer doing something because you have an overwhelming desire to do it; you’re doing it because you have bills to pay and mouths to feed.
Your passion isn’t something you can let guide you — you have to guide it. When you turn your passion into a job, you’ll have a certain amount of work to complete each and every week or you go broke. Period.
The first couple of months, you may still feel the passion burning. But after a little while, you may realize that your passion really isn’t your passion anymore. You’re no longer doing something because you enjoy it; you’re doing something because you need money.
Taking Criticism is Hard
When you turn your passion into a job or business, it becomes your baby. You have to nurture it and grow it, and it becomes a part of you.
Therefore, when a friend or colleague points out all the things you could do to make improvements, it stings. After all, they’re talking about something you know and love, so it hurts a lot more than if it were something you weren’t passionate about.
Passion Doesn’t Always Pay the Bills
You might be passionate about gardening, music, or running — but is turning that into a job going to pay the bills?
You might think that trading in your salary to pursue your passion is totally worth it. That is, until you’re flat broke.
I firmly believe that money doesn’t buy happiness, but that the lack of money will make you downright miserable.
So before you turn your passion into a job, you need to be sure you can generate enough revenue to cover your bills.
What Should You Do Instead?
My advice is to instead find a job or start a business that you’re really good at.
What’s something you can do better than most people?
It doesn’t have to be your passion, just something you mildly enjoy. Since you’re not as intimately involved, you’ll be much more open to outside criticisms, and will be able to grow at a much faster pace. Faster growth equals more money, and you also won’t risk ruining your passion.
Though I stand by what I’ve said, there are, of course, exceptions. And it’s usually these success stories that stick with us. (Nobody wants to think about the guy who gave up everything to turn his passion into a job, then failed miserably.) Just remember that these successes are the exception, and think carefully before turning your passion into a business.
What do you think? Is turning a passion into a job really a good idea?