“I feel like it’s going to take a long time before I can start freelancing full-time.”
I am constantly shocked by how people will spend 4-8 years in college or just as much time in a crappy job and then complain when their freelancing career doesn’t take off after 4 weeks.
You want to do this for the rest of your life?
Well then it’s going to take some work.
There’s one thing that nobody ever tells you about following your dreams and your passions. This article is about the dark side of taking that leap of faith.
Here’s the dark side following your passions that nobody ever talks about…
You won’t always be living the life and things won’t always go smoothly. You won’t be able to quit your job. You might even be competing with folks who are already full-time at the passion.
In the last few months I’ve had a few friends tell me about how they had to get real jobs because following their passions wasn’t working out or about how they were getting impatient with their side hustles.
A few examples of how following your passions doesn’t lead to financial freedom:
- Many UFC fighters have publicly complained about being broke. One had to sell her bike. Another claimed to not even be able to afford training. These are people that are sometimes worldwide celebrities. They fight in front of the entire planet and they can’t even follow their passions full-time.
- Coaching kettlebell class goes wrong when the gym cancels a few classes. I heard from a friend who lost a few classes at his gym and was now struggling to replace his income from his hustle.
- Your major client cuts you as a writer (VERY COMMON) and now you’re scrambling to find new writing gigs to pay the bills. I saw a friend post about this on Facebook. Her main writing job dried up out of nowhere. She went from making great money to no money after one email.
You get the point. Your passions won’t always make you rich. You might even have to stay at your job or find a part-time job.
It’s the best feeling in the world when your passions bring in a full-time income. It’s the worst feeling in the world when your passions don’t help you make ends meet.
“I feel like my business is going nowhere.”
I’m always torn when it comes to writing about following your passions. There are some passions that I know won’t make me money for years. I wrestle while fully knowing that I won’t be making any money in the near future.
What’s the hard lesson of following your passions?
Things won’t always work out. You could totally fail. You might have to switch paths. It could also take you longer to get to where you want to be. You may even have to stay at your job longer than you think.
When you’e in college you know that if you finish your assignments and follow the course schedule, everything will work out. If you get high enough grades and land that internship, you’re likely to get that job when you graduate.
When you follow your passions, there are no guarantees. There’s no real blueprint to success.
The biggest shame in life is to give up on your dreams. The second biggest shame is to be unable to pay your bills.
Nobody ever talks about this stuff. Not only am I here to openly discuss this stuff, but I want to help you get through this phase.
What can you do when it feels like following your passions is going nowhere?
[Must listen: See how Sean Ogle ended up quitting his job.]
Don’t feel like a loser.
This is tougher to actually follow. I always feel like a loser when things don’t workout. It’s only natural to be down on yourself. Whatever you do, you have to try to stay positive.
How do you do this?
- Find a fun hobby. Workout, knit, wrestle, juggle, or find anything that lets you have fun.
- Surround yourself with positive people. Don’t let quitters bring you down.
- Listen to motivational music. This always gets me going.
- Think of your progress. You’ve come a long way.
- Work on becoming more resilient. Toughen up a little!
You have to be brutally realistic.
Do you really want to follow your passions or do you just suck at your current job?
Are you really doing everything within your reach to improve your situation?
Can you find another way to make money?
You have to be brutally realistic with yourself. After a failed product launch, I realized that nobody cared about what I was selling. I had nobody to blame but myself.
You have to take inventory of your situation to see what you can do to improve things.
“Patience, persistence and perspiration make an unbeatable combination for success.” — Napoleon Hill
You need a source of income.
You have to make money.
You need to have a source of income. I don’t want to hear that you quit a job without a plan. I don’t want to hear that you’re waiting for some magical moment where following your passions will pay off. You have to think about how you’re going to make money.
On that note…
Keep on working.
I know that you hate your boss, that your co-workers annoy you, the commute sucks, and you just want to sleep in. I get that.
Here’s the thing: YOU HAVE TO EARN YOUR FREEDOM!
Wait and respect the grind.
It takes time to actually make it in most areas.
AJ Styels is a WWE pro wrestler right now. Do you know when he made his WWE debut? 2016. Do you know when he started training to be a pro wrestler? 1998. Talk about overnight success, eh?
It may take you longer than expected to reach the top of your side hustle. Guess what? That’s okay. That’s all apart of the grind.
Study the best and constantly get feedback.
“Tell me and I forget, teach me and I may remember, involve me and I learn.” — Benjamin Franklin
Do you have a mentor? Are you getting realistic feedback on what you’re doing?
This is where most hustlers either give up or get lazy.
Here’s how you can learn from the best:
- Go to conferences.
- Listen to podcasts.
- Join forums.
- Ask for help.
- Pay for courses.
- Read books.
- Pick the minds of those who came before you.
Are you doing everything possible to ensure that your hustle becomes a success?
Look, it’s simply unrealistic to quit your job and to expect the money to start flowing in that same evening. Don’t blame some guy online because he told you to quit your job and you did so blindly. It’s your life. Life won’t always be about positive motivational quotes when you follow your passions. I can promise you one thing though. At the end of the day, it’s all going to be worth it.
“I have far more respect for the person with a single idea who gets there than for the person with a thousand ideas who does nothing.” — Thomas Edison