Because a side hustle plus a steady stream of income is gold.
It’s a new year! Since we’re all about building passion, why not make this year THE year you finally start pursuing your passion despite having a full-time job? No more resolutions and wishful thinking, now is the time to FINALLY make things happen.
Anything is possible
In today’s colorful world of digital nomads, travel-thirsty yuppies, and to-die-for Instagram feeds, it seems anything is possible when it comes to pursuing your passion.
Yesterday’s formula of “Study well, get a good job and you’re set for life” no longer rings true. These days, young professionals have much more going for them after their nine-to-five jobs. Just ask that advertising exec who sidelines as a wedding makeup artist or that investment banker with a small brewery and organic chips business.
First, it’s important to determine what it is you’re passionate about. Is it something that you’ve been doing all your life? Do you have professional experience to back it up? Or do you have no clue as to how you can get started? (Don’t panic, we’ll get there.)
Next, pin down why you’d like to pursue it on top of a regular job. Do you want to do it as an outlet, a mere recreational activity? Is it for extra income so you can afford your annual Euro trips? Or is it to eventually shift careers a la Jeff Bezos?
Once you lay down your personal objectives, the next steps become clearer.
Moonlighting has its definite share of pros and cons. For instance, you get a steady cash flow to fund your needs and your chosen passion—and if it happens to be a moneymaking passion, then you earn even more dough in total. As much as The Social Network glamorizes the idea of quitting your job and plunging into a startup business, it’s not always the same fate for everyone. On the flipside, you will need to make the most of your time outside your office cube to fuel your passion.
Before you make the jump to leading a “double life,” make sure you’ve mentally prepared yourself for the road ahead. There will be fun times, for sure, when you’re doing something you love, but it will also entail a lot of sacrifices—and if you’re the type who struggles with something as simple as cutting carbs, then you’re gonna have to learn how to discipline yourself, mate.
Make sure you’re playing up to your greatest strengths and are tapping into available resources. And to be realistic, find a passion outlet that’s manageable. You don’t literally have to die trying.
The Internet is a passion wonderland
Thanks to search engines, social media, and job portals, it’s relatively easy to get cracking on pursuing your passion, stat. The sooner the universe learns about you, the more you’ll be immersed in the environment you desire.
On Facebook, there are thousands of groups created by people who bond over the most random passions. Watch, too, for events that cater to what you want to do—tutorials, workshops, seminars, bazaars, classes and the like. Try to score invites or politely ask for discounted or free passes. It’s also easy to search for related videos on YouTube, and you’ll be hooked for hours on end ogling at beautifully produced content. Maybe you have a knack, too, for vlogging! Hello, future Casey Neistat!
Should you want a moneymaking side hustle, look into freelancing websites like raket.ph, upwork.com and elance.com.
If you seriously want to bank on your passion, building business relationships and establishing your client base should be your priority—don’t think about the money right away. Every meet up, conversation, or acquaintance is an opportunity to partner up with people who share the same interests as you do and create a business deal. Sometimes you will even have to offer your product or service for free or at a discounted price for your first few clients just to get your foot in the door. And because you want to be the best at what you do, you should look for the best mentors to learn from and gain as much experience as you can. You’ll never know, these people you meet may even refer you to others.
Define Your Personal Brand
Be careful though. The Internet is an endless rabbit hole. If you’re easily swayed by other people or you don’t know what you want or what you’re good at, you lose your sense of individuality and your edge. You need to identify your strengths and weaknesses in order to help you solidify your niche, establish your credibility, and build your own personal brand, which should be a reflection of your core values and unique skills.
Just do it
The key to pursuing your passion on top of your day job is to do it now. Be consistent but enjoy the ride—don’t tire yourself out in the process. Find the pace that works for you best. It may be tempting to drop your job and focus on your passion project 24/7, but when you keep both, you’ll reap the benefits of both worlds.