What does it take to change your life and make a living doing what you love?
Sat by the sea in Rhodes this week (a lovely break courtesy of my gorgeous partner), I was sipping on an iced tea, recovering in the shade as I planned my new YouTube video content for DARETOGROW TV.
As I wrote out my plans, I found myself staring off into the waves, asking…What does it really take to change your life and make a living doing what you love?
Here is what came to mind…
(1) It takes dissatisfaction:
You have to reach a point in your life where ‘what you want’ and ‘who you’ve become’ doesn’t match where you ‘want to be’ and who you ‘know you can be’. When this happens something shifts and you want to change, you have to change. Without dissatisfaction, why change?
For me, this dissatisfaction manifested as depression for six long years. I literally depressed my personality and my passions to fit into what the typical view of business looked like and, even though I was building my own companies, I built businesses I didn’t love. I did what I knew people expected and I ended up in a job of my own making.
I ignored my own passions for so long and carried on this path even though I was miserable and eventually I couldn’t even get out of bed: I couldn’t bear to face to face my own life. A life I’d proactively built for myself, by myself. Does that make sense?
That’s when things changed for me. The scales tipped and something happened that caused me to tap into my purpose and ask myself what I really wanted and who I really was. The answer to that question has become DARETOGROW.
(2) It takes courage:
We’re all raised to live harmoniously in the system: get a good education, get a good job, get married, work until you’re 65 and then retire. How else do you manage a population (literally millions of people) but lay out a pre-destined path for them?
These ideas are archaic, especially regarding the 9-5 shift pattern. This was invented to satisfy the demands of the industrial revolution and the school system was built to prepare us for this life. But what if I don’t want to learn what the state is teaching? What if I don’t want a job, or to get married. Heck I don’t even want to retire.
To go against what everyone is doing and what traditional success looks like takes courage – the courage to follow your heart when everyone says ‘it’s too risky’, the courage to quit your job when the time is right, the courage to get back up when you get it wrong (which you will hehe) and the courage to say no to other people’s expectations and yes to your own dreams.
(3) It takes vision:
You’re about to make the impossible, possible; you’re about to turn the invisible, visible; you’re about to build something that doesn’t exist – a new business, a new life, a new version of your world. Literally, what you ‘wish you could do’ is invisible isn’t it? It’s a fantasy, a dream? Because it doesn’t exist yet. But if you hone that vision and take action towards it every day then one day it will stop being a vision and start becoming your reality.
I used to say ‘I just want to sit in coffee shops and write, can’t that be my job?’ I was only half joking. I didn’t want to wear suits and go into the office or work 9-5. Two years on and I do that… I sit in coffee shops and balconies wherever I want and make videos and blogs and vlogs. I holiday all over the world, I live by the beach and I bake scones in the middle of the day. To take action, you need vision. This was once my vision.
(4) It takes belief:
Trust me when I say no one will believe in you in the beginning, except maybe your partner but even they might find it hard. After all, if they’re not dissatisfied, if they like the system and if they don’t share your vision then all you’re doing is rocking their boat.
Believe in yourself and don’t expect others to believe in you. In fact let’s go one step further – don’t waste any time trying to convince people of your worth and your vision and your relentless commitment to making it happen. It’s a waste of energy. Throw that energy into making it happen.
The sad thing is that people won’t believe in your because they don’t think it’s possible for themselves: if they can’t do it, why could you do it? In order for them to believe in you, they must first believe in themselves. Show them how. Lead the way.
(5) It takes action:
You can’t lie in bed all night dreaming up your ideas and imagine how good it will be ‘when…’. You have to get out there and take action. Will you know what action to take? Nope! You’ve got to guess and guess until you guess right. Or better yet, find someone who’s achieved what you want and learn from their strategies, models and techniques. Will you get it right first time? Absolutely not haha. So the remedy? Take more action, find great mentors and prepare to fail your way to your dreams. Invest your money in learning, in books, in courses. Not in old fashioned ‘official qualification’ – spend your money where people have the results you have to have. This might mean joining an online course or flying to LA to see an incredible person speak.
This is why it’s important it is your dream and not someone else’s dream – it takes a lot of action, a lot of commitment, a lot of learning and…a lot of hiccups!
(6) It takes time:
This might be the hardest one to swallow. I’m building my third business now and am about to hit six figures in year three. I would have loved to get here sooner but it takes time to build a brand, share your story and develop your offering. Give yourself time…at least two years to build a sustainable income that can replace your wage and another five to ten years to build everything you currently hold in your vision.
No-one made it happen overnight. There’s too much to do, too much to learn. But you could replace your wage in twelve – twenty-four months if you commit. You could earn extra money for luxuries in six months if you really focus on your efforts. Decide what a good result looks like for each leg of your journey and focus on lots of micro wins.
(7) It takes creation
A huge shift you’ll make on this journey is moving from being a consumer to being a creator. Building your dream life and making a living doing what you love means bringing something to the world; a product, a service, an idea, a brand. Don’t wait. Start today by writing a blog or a story or a chapter and share it on your personal feed if that’s all you have. Outline your online course on paper. Start sketching out your design for your new product. Write a pricing list. List 100 ideas of things you could create around what you love.
The key is to create a draft, release it into the world and redevelop, redevelop, redevelop. My first online course was six videos and six live webinars emailed out to people who signed up. And I was chuffed! Now it’s 37 units long with guest content, a welcome box when you sign up, forums, a Facebook group, its own website and more. Start small so you can grow big.
Did you enjoy this? Email me and let me know: what are you working on and what would you love to know more about? I’m planning a new YouTube video series and I’d love to answer any and all of your questions on these topics…Lisa x x