There is a famous quote that I am sure we’ve all seen/heard a million times by now. “Do what you love and you’ll never work a day in your life”. It’s a popular saying that, in theory, makes complete sense. However, turning your passion into a career is something that is much easier said than done.
We all have passions, most likely several of them. Our excitement for them can easily convince us that turning even just one of those passions into a career would be the answer to all our prayers. But, once again, this is something that is much easier said than done. It’s not as easy as that quote makes it sound. That if we just do something we love, we won’t be “working” or that if we just follow our passions the money will come.
Jackie Parks, co-owner of The Workshop, a new Pilates studio opening up in Scottsdale, did just that. She took her passion for Pilates and turned it into a career. In the below video, Jackie and Catie sat down to discuss exactly how to turn your passion into a career, as well as what to expect when you embark on the journey of doing what you love.
How to Turn Your Passion Into a Career & What to Expect
Define Your Passion
As we mentioned above, you most likely have more than one passion. Some you know you are good at, some you enjoy more than others, but might not be great at and some that you both enjoy and are great at. Figure out what that one passion is and hone in on what you really want.
Parks’ advice is to “take what you want to do as a whole and start to whittle down what you want, what is realistic and what you really feel like you could spend a lot of time, effort and energy on.”
Make Your Passion a Job Before It’s a Job
A lot of us are pursuing our passions on the side, or what is now known as a “side hustle”. It seems we are all trying to create something on top of having a full-time job. This can be exhausting and make you feel as though you don’t have time for anything else.
However, if you want to turn your passion into a career “you have to put in the time before you see a return” Parks points out. “You have to have dedicated time, energy, space for what it is you are passionate about”. Parks recommends picking up a Passion Planner to help scheduled in time for your passions among the “real life” stuff.
Be Prepared for Your Relationship With Your Passion to Change
“This is a huge thing I had to learn,” says Parks, “this thing I am so passionate about, is kind of a job now”. You no longer get to work on your passion only when you have some free time. It’s an actual job now. Even though you may love it, there will be parts (probably a lot of parts), that will feel like work.
“You just have to remind yourself of your why more often than when you are just focused on the idea” However, when you know it’s right, Parks points out “you are willing to put up with all of this”
Legitimize Yourself Before Turning Your Passion into a Career
Just because you are passionate about something, it doesn’t necessarily mean you are good at it. Get the necessary schooling, certifications, training, learn everything you can about your passion prior to turning it into a career. “Legitimizing your passion will give you time to find your own voice in what you do” notes Parks. “You have to know what the rules are to be able to break them and find your own voice in that”.
Having the necessary training, yet being able to share your passion in your own voice will help to legitimize and prove your commitment to turning your passion into a career.
Imposter Syndrome is a Real Thing
“When something is your dream for so long, it’s hard to be like, Oh I’m Doing This Now”, explains Parks. Even after you’ve been treating your passion as a job, after you’ve legitimized yourself in every way, there is a good chance you will still feel like you are lying about it when someone asks “What do you do”. For Parks, “because I was private for so long and because it was just an idea and a dream for so long, that now when I get to share it, it doesn’t feel real.”
You will most likely feel the need to prove it to others when you get asked about it. You’ll forever wonder at one point it will begin to feel real. Parks recommends, “stay present, remind yourself that you worked for this and you now have it.”