This is a great question because throughout our childhood and adolescent years we’re always being told to “chase our dreams” but we’re never taught exactly how to do this, well, at least not in school.
There’s no specific blueprint for turning your passion into a career, but if I were to pinpoint a few things that are essential to anyone’s success, these would be it:
- Build an online presence
It’s 2017 – if you don’t have even a small social media following it will be extremely difficult to build a personal brand, unless, say, you stumble across $1 million and can afford some pretty great marketing.
Start with identifying what it is you want your career to be based around – a niche. If you are a writer for example, what kind of writing will you do? What topics will you write about? The list goes on. Once you know where your passion in writing lies, create as many social media accounts as you can and centre them around that topic.
Note that the popularity of social networks is always changing and new networks are always emerging so it’s important to stay up-to-date with this stuff, but as of now, here’s my list for the most essential social networks anyone must be on if they want to build a personal brand (in no specific order)
Now it’s not easy for one person to maintain all these social media profiles on a daily basis, but try your best to post daily updates to as many networks as possible. It’s also imperative that you interact with people on these networks! Make friends, build connections, make it worthwhile. Who knows, you might meet some billionaire philanthropist on some sketchy sub reddit that just so happens to be particularly keen on endorsing your writing endeavours.
2. Create Value For People
Whatever your passion is, it needs to be worthwhile to people in order for them to buy into it. If your passion in writing is for say, poetry, you need to ask yourself how your poems can create value for those reading them.
You can write:
- Motivational poems
- funny poems
- romantic poems
As long as people gain some form of knowledge or entertainment from your writing, there’s no use in pursuing a career in this writing because no one’s gonna buy it!
Another great way to create value is to teach people. Create eBooks, online courses, educational videos, etc. Offer some educational content for free, and charge them for the more advanced content. There are plenty of people online who want to learn how to become a better writer or painter, and if you can offer educational content to help them, you will have earned some money to help fund your career, but more importantly, you’ve made a positive impact on someone’s life, which is in my opinion, one of the best aspects about doing what you love.
3. Be Consistent
Once you have even a small platform to promote your writing, it is so so so so important that you stay consistent with whatever you’re writing about. Create a schedule based around the best times to post your type of content, and stick to that schedule.
For example, I write articles about international economics on my blog. I find that the most popular days to post are Mondays, Thursdays, and Saturdays at around 9 a.m. and I always schedule my articles in advance so that my subscribers know they will have something to read at those specific time frames – this is essential to building a personal brand.
4. Be Patient
If there’s anything I’ve learned from successful entrepreneurs (and at the same time, arrogantly try to disregard) it’s that all great ideas take time, lots of time.
If you truly want to build a career out of something you love doing, you must be willing to work harder than you’ve ever worked in your life only to see minimal results, and still have the perseverance to keep going. This motivation is what sets successful people apart from the average people; those who are daring enough to consistently pursue something they are passionate about are the ones deemed “crazy” by society, because they refuse to fit in with the social norm of working a regular ‘9–5’ job.
5. Make The Leap
Say you’ve done all the above. You’ve amassed a social media following of thousands (you need over 100,000 followers across several social media sites in order to monetize anything) you’ve created exceptional, helpful content for your subscribers, and you’ve been extremely consistent and patient, now what?
You make the leap.
You quit your full-time job and put all your effort into creating the business you’ve always dreamed of.
You get a loan from the bank and put it towards supplies and marketing, and then you work harder than you’ve ever worked in your entire life.
It won’t be easy, hell, it probably won’t even be fun at times, but you will actively be making a positive change in the world all while doing what you love; what more could anyone ask for?