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Can You Make a Living Doing What You Love?

Kirkwood KnitteryThat was the title of a St. Louis Post-Dispatch article from this past Sunday that I had the honor of being quoted in.

The article follows several area women who are doing just that. Two opened a knittery store in Kirkwood, another is making a living as a harpist. The piece does a good job showing that turning your passion into your main source of income isn’t always easy – but it IS possible.

The main point the article makes is that to truly pull this off, one has to be able to manage change. We’ve talked about this a lot on the blog lately, and it was the subject of last month’s CareeReport newsletter. As I was quoted in the article, there are indeed some things you can proactively do to manage change:

1. Figure out what you want to do, then talk to people in the field. Ask yourself, ‘Does this sound like me?’

2. Don’t make assumptions. Most people, if you ask them, ‘Does your job description fit the work you do?’ will say, ‘no!’ Find out what they really do. Then ask yourself, ‘Does 70% of this career sound like something that will energize me?’

3. Take your career for a test drive. If possible, shadow someone in the field. Ask good questions about both its positive and negative elements. For example, ask what problems are likely to arise and how to handle them when they do.

4. Consider making the transition in increments. There’s nothing wrong with starting small (perhaps working part-time) and growing.

Have any of you ever made your passion point your primary source of income? How did it go? What kinds of change did you encounter?