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There are all kinds of different things you might be passionate about in your life, ranging from music, to law and justice, to fitness, to storytelling, to name just a few.
No one wants to live a life that feels like an aimless grind for no good reason. Instead, what we all want is to be able to live our lives pursuing things that we find genuinely meaningful and powerful. Things that we are passionate about, in other words.
It’s not necessarily straightforward and easy to “follow your passion” and to do so in such a way that means you can actually make money off it, too. And yet, trying your best to turn your dreams into a reality can easily improve your sense of life satisfaction and well-being, in all sorts of ways.
So, here are just a few different ways – broadly speaking – to make a living following your passion.
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Identify problems people face, and help to provide and clarify solutions
Perhaps the number one role of any business – and the number one reason why there is such a thing as businesses in the first place – is to identify the problems people face over the course of their everyday lives, and to help provide and clarify solutions for them.
These problems can be major – ranging from questions concerning death, faith, and companionship – or they can be minor – focused around resolving occasional bouts of boredom, for example.
The specific problems you are trying to help people with will vary quite dramatically from business to business. If some people are really in need of an Apple Music vs. Spotify guide – Setapp has them covered, for example. More than that, in fact, Setapp have bundled together an enormous package of “solutions” into one overarching product, that can be used to address various concerns in one fell swoop.
One way of making a living by following your passion, is to not even try to make a living, whatsoever, but to just live your life as usual, while spending as much time and energy as you can in appreciating and engaging with the thing that you are passionate about.Tweet This
Try a new spin on something
When Steve Jobs became a permanent fixture in all books on entrepreneurial success and creative thinking in business, for creating the iPhone, he hadn’t necessarily brought anything completely new into existence. Mobile phones already existed, and MP3 players already existed, too.
Instead, what Steve Jobs did was to come up with a new spin on popular items that were already around. In the case of the iPhone, by combining these two devices in one, and then adding a few extra perks and features, as well.
It might be that you feel like there isn’t much opportunity available for making a living pursuing your particular passion. Maybe the market is completely saturated, and there’s more competition than you know what to do with.
“Focusing on balancing between using your talents and doing what you are passionate about can help you to incorporate your passion into your career. If you take the time to consider what it is that you specifically enjoy about a given hobby, talent or career path, you can use your creativity to come up with different careers that may encompass that aspect. If your passion is photography but what you really love about it is that you get to create visually appealing products, you may want to consider working for a graphic design firm, or something of that nature. Distilling your passion down into its most basic form will help you take it into a broader arena of possibilities.” – Is Following Your Passion Good or Bad?
But that’s a way of thinking that suggests you’re looking at things from a conventional perspective. And, of course, it would be the case that the bigshot corporations in that particular domain would already have cornered the “conventional market.”
Try a new spin on something, and be bold and daring, and maybe make a habit and routine of testing out different off-the-wall ideas, one after the other, just as a normal part of your everyday professional life.
Are you someone who is passionate about music, and also about fitness? Well, there definitely seems like there would be some kind of potential way of combining those two things to help make you, and whatever it is you’re doing, a fair bit more noticeable.
Photo by Randy Fath on Unsplash
Play the same “game” as everyone else – but play it with more integrity and sincerity
Sometimes, people who are able to make a serious living by pursuing their passion are not necessarily playing a “different game” than everyone else. Sometimes, they’re not even especially innovative, or daring, in the particulars of what it is they’re offering.
Instead, what sets these particular people apart is that they “play the game” with far more integrity and sincerity than most other people.
People care a lot about authenticity, sincerity, and integrity. They care about it as consumers, as people, and as enthusiasts of things, themselves.
How many times have you heard someone complaining that their favourite band “sold out”?
Likely they weren’t bitter because the band was suddenly making a bit more money, but rather because they felt the band was ditching their artistic integrity, for the sake of playing it safe and making more money.
Every so often, jaded people – and, we are all essentially jaded people from time to time – encounter other people and companies who seem so earnest and genuine that it’s difficult not to be in all.
However, it is you run your business specifically, or pursue your career according to whatever it is that that motivates you the most, being true to yourself and acting with integrity is bound to make you popular.
Photo by Ian Schneider on Unsplash
Don’t actively try to “make a living” at all – just do what it is you love, as sincerely as possible
One way of making a living by following your passion is to not even try to make a living, whatsoever, but to just live your life as usual, while spending as much time and energy as you can in appreciating and engaging with the thing that you are passionate about.
Many of the great musicians and artists of history just did what they did because they loved it for its own sake – and then had success fall into their laps as a pleasant surprise, rather than as something that was automatically expected.
It might be that you need an action plan in order to make a living doing what it is you love. But whether or not you do have that action plan, you should still spend as much time as you can just enjoying it for what it is.
If you try too hard to be a hard-nosed businessman in the way you go about pursuing your passion, you might end up losing that “passion” altogether.