“Do what you love, Val, and the rewards will come.”
It was a piece of advice given to me by one of my mentors a long time ago. I was intrigued and quite skeptical when he said it, but I really wanted to believe that statement could be true. If I followed my passion and pursued what I loved for a living, would the rewards really come? The answer, I have discovered, is yes. One of the chapters in my book, Rich Minds, Rich Rewards, is appropriately named, “Do what you love and the rewards will come.” They don’t always come overnight, but they do come at the right time.
What is it you love that you’d like to do (or do more of) for a living? The most gratifying rewards are fulfillment and joy, but today I want to share five questions to consider when you want to make money pursuing your purpose—that thing you are passionate about.
Many people know what their passion is, but are frustrated by the process of trying to turn their passion into profit. Whether you are running your own company, starting a business, or seeking that next promotion or job, answer these five questions to help you increase the financial rewards of doing what you love:
1. What difference am I passionate about making in others’ lives?
Notice I didn’t ask “what are you passionate about?” Instead, I want you to determine the purpose of your passion, which is using it to positively impact the world. That type of drive attracts opportunities that often lead to raises, job offers, and new business. To turn your passion into profit, you must fulfill a purpose that others need or want. Unfortunately, people and companies aren’t particularly concerned with whether you get to pursue your passion. They spend money on people, products and services that fulfill their needs and desires. When you focus on your passion—then find a way to allow your passion to impact others, you have a winning formula.
2. Have I mastered my craft?
It isn’t enough to have talent. Allow your passion to fuel a desire to learn more about your field of endeavor—and improve your skills and knowledge. Those who master their craft go above and beyond others in their field. They introduce new ways of doing things, inspire trends and blaze trails that others follow.
3. Am I passion-driven or profit-driven?
When you are passionate about what you do, you give 110%. Those who are most sought after for their skills are often those whose passion creates results that people need. Their passion for what they do sparks creativity, perseverance and excellence. You cannot underestimate the power of passion to produce excellence and perseverance—two assets you need to profit from what you love. Success comes to those who are willing to stay the course despite adversities, challenges and distractions.
4. Do I know how to make money?
If the goal is to increase your income, then seek knowledge about how best to do that. Many people fail to earn more because they haven’t made financial education a priority. Although passion is a key to attracting financial rewards, making more money also means learning to live below your means, ask for what you are worth, invest and spend wisely. If you are running a business, it also means hiring good people (financial and legal advisors, as well as staff), marketing, and reigning in expenses. Take classes, read financial books and learn lessons from those who are where you want to be.
5. Am I willing to take a leap of faith?
Fear is the biggest obstacle to pursuing your dreams. Many people insist it is a lack of money or time or resources, but it is often a fear of failure, rejection, or even a fear of success, that holds a person back. What is it you’ve been wanting to pursue that you’ve been hesitating about? Take baby steps if you have to, but be willing to step out on faith to use the natural gifts and talents you are passionate about. If you do what you love, patiently and persistently, the rewards will come.
This article was originally published in April 2008 and has been updated for freshness and accuracy.
Photo by @isaeva.studio/Twenty20