Stuck in a rut?
It’s probably because you aren’t doing what you love every day. And isn’t that the story of most people nowadays? I can’t even begin to count the number of people who have wished out loud that they were doing something other than what they are doing now. You’ve got stock brokers who want to be artists, bank managers who want to be musicians, scientists who want to be event planners…the list is endless.
Most of these people were deeply dissatisfied and it’s affected all areas of their lives. When challenged to step out and chase their dreams, the answer, or rather the question, always was, ‘How will these bills get paid?’ or ‘How will I take care of my children?’ And with that, they closed the proverbial door to their dreams and walked away.
But I’ve got good news!
There is a way that you and all these people can live out their dreams without becoming homeless or irresponsible parents. It is absolutely possible to turn your passion into profit. In fact, most of the leading entrepreneurs across the globe are people who are determined to follow their dreams. They are the innovators and trendsetters of our time, and there is a slot for you right up there with them. So yes, it is possible to live the dream. It has been done and I am going to show you how. Ready? Here we go:
1. Name it and sell it
Whether you have one passion or several, it is important to write it/them down. Then you need to see what that can do for others; how you can sell it to others. For instance, if you are passionate about organizing spaces, you can start a house clearance business or an organizing business for people or even companies moving into new spaces or needing a change in how a space looks without having to buy anything new. It is critical to know how you can sell your passion because that’s how you’ll pay the bills.
2. Lay the ground work
Passion is great and all but you need to keep a level head when checking out the market space for what you are offering as well as your competition. This is perhaps where the labor meets the passion because, while you will be working at what you love, it is still work.
Do a proper market analysis to see the feasibility and profitability of what you intend to do. Identify your niche and customize your product or service to attract them. Observe your competition and learn from their mistakes while improving on their strengths within the scope of your vision (no need to get side-tracked staring at the competition).
3. Two are better than one
In this new venture, you will need help from more than just one person. You need an encourager, a cheerleader who will help you remember how much you love this when you feel there is more work than love in your business.
You will also need to find people who are as passionate about what you are doing and use their strengths to build up the business. For instance, you may be great at doing the actual organizing, but you cannot market to save your life; you can get someone to help with that. Plus, as the business grows, you will need more hands on deck to keep your dream alive.
4. Become a share-bear
It is written that a lamp kept under the table is of no use to those around it, as is a dream kept hidden from people. I know that you have kept this close to your heart for years and you are pretty sensitive about people’s reaction to your dream, but sharing it with others may open up previously unknown opportunities.
In this digital age, you don’t even have to speak about it. You could open a blog and link your posts to your social media platforms to get a conversation going on your idea. You can learn a lot from responses (your own little focus group!) while marketing your business and presenting yourself as an authority on the subject which opens up consulting opportunities. So by all means, share, share, and share!
5. Put your money where your mouth is
It’s all talk until a check is issued. You need to get your money together in readiness to fund your dream. In fact, it can be a great motivator to keeping your current job because it is making money for your dream career. You may want to take a loan to get you started, but be sure not to bite off more than you can chew. After all, businesses tend to break even only after the first five years and you don’t want a dark cloud of debt hanging over your dream business, do you?
6. Aim to please
Your first few clients are some of the most important you will ever have so outdo yourself on these first jobs. Customer service needs to be top-notch since it can be a deal breaker, even with great service delivery. Make sure your work invokes a pleasant reaction from your clients; dazzle them with your skill and quality of work. After all, they are taking a chance on you and may not have much faith so make them believe. And after you have done that, repeat it every time for every client.
7. Keep the fire
Just like a marriage, the passion can fade when all the ‘practical’ life things take centre stage. And just like in a marriage, you need to keep reminding yourself why you got into this in the first place.
Remind yourself constantly why you love what you do and always work with that end in mind. As you probably know by now, a paycheck is not a sustainable motivator and that is why you probably left your job for the dream. Remember that as your own motivator and also to encourage your partners and workers to give their all to this venture that they too are passionate about.
We should all be so bold as to follow our dreams. Perhaps if more of us did, we would have better businesses and be overall happier people. Perhaps if you did, you could inspire a generation of free thinkers and innovators that live within their dreams. So go on, live the dream.