At the outset, let’s state this fact clearly. Quitting your day job to follow your passion is easy. However, following through comfortably with what you love to do while sustaining yourself enough to live a good life is definitely not.
Even though you see people handing in their resignation letters every day to follow their dream, there is so much in the background that you do not see. You’ve seen your colleague leave his well paying IT job for a career in travel photography. But do you know how much effort really went into making a bold decision like that?
Letting go of a reliable source of income for a dreamy idealistic career related to your passion without a safety net is childish at best. This is not to say that you should never follow your passions. You have to weigh the costs between both streams and understand a realistic way to transition into the one that you are hopeful about. A corporate HR manager cannot expect to get paid for his paintings the very day after his resignation. It is crucial for you to build yourself up strongly in your dream career while not affecting the day job that that helps you pay your bills. This also ensures that you don’t end up penniless and start hating your passion for not being able to support and sustain you.
Here are a few steps you can follow to pursue your passion without quitting your day job until you can be confident of making the switch eventually.
You Can Follow Your Dream While You’re Still On The Payroll; Don’t Quit Your Job Yet!
Finding Your Passion
It is easy to find your passion and most likely you are already aware of it. People who haven’t found it, can ask themselves this simple question. What is it that you love doing? What makes you come alive, sets your soul on fire and makes you feel content. Is it food, Travel, Photography or Writing? Ask yourself this question and you will have a resounding answer. If you’ve already found your passion, then the answering this question will leave no room for doubt.
Making Time for It
It is important for you make your passion a more important part of your everyday life to be able to put more work and and be more involved in it. You can start with as little as half an hour every day and later increase it overtime. If you love playing music, you can spend a minimum half an hour every day in practice to understand how to play your instrument or compose better. In time, you will become a highly skilled musician who people can rely on. On weekends, you can spend more time doing the same and you wouldn’t mind it because you already love music. Your dedication and focus during these times will determine your career graph later.
Taking Up Small Projects
Once you’re confident of your skills, you can approach potential clients for some small-scale projects that you can do. There are many freelance opportunities that you can take up and confidently deliver. Start with one and figure out how to handle the time, space and logistics for it. You will have to make time for it during your weekends and not let it affect your day job or your family time. You may not get paid very well but you will definitely get a taste of the industry that you will be working in. This can give you a broad understanding of how to work your way up the financial ladder in the industry and make a sustainable living.
Analysing The Financial Gains for Sustainability
Once you’ve delivered well on a few projects, it’s time for you to understand your footing in the industry. What is the amount of work you can deliver on a monthly basis and how much will you get paid for it? If you’re an aspiring tattoo artist, you will have to figure out the going rate for your tattoos and how many you can do in a month. Is it enough? Sustainable? Will you be happy doing this kind of work for the amount you will be getting paid? You have to answer these vital questions for yourself and understand the pros and cons.
Diving Right In
Even when you are confident that you can sustain yourself by following your passion, it is wise to give it at least six months before you dive right in. You can take this time to take a realistic approach towards your new career, grow your network and chalk out a viable business plan for your work. This is important so you can have a safe future and don’t let your talents to turn into liabilities.
Once you’ve taken care of all three steps you will be secure enough to make the switch from your day job to your new career that you’ve always dreamed about. Now you can lead a healthy and passionate work life no matter which field or industry you choose. Your day job will get the credit for help you sustain yourself when you were building yourself up to follow your passion.
Why do people think following your passion is a bad idea? Some may even argue that passion is not enough rule the world. But, imagine what the world would be like if passion didn’t exist!