Do what you love to do and make a living at it too!
This may sound overly simplistic, but it’s a step many people neglect to take when trying to transition into a vocation they love. If you want to start doing what you love to do, then start doing what you love to do. It’s not good enough to just daydream about opening up that craft store, starting your own clothing line or even moving into a management position, you must do something about it. If you begin to act on the desires of your heart, you will begin experiencing satisfaction immediately. Just knowing that you are doing something to realize your dreams, will bring fulfillment even before your current circumstances change.
Do it now!
Now, let’s be clear. This doesn’t mean that you immediately quit your job today to start that catering business you’ve always wanted. It does mean, however, that you begin spending some of your time on a regular basis doing catering. Take an honest look at how you spend your time.
You spend a significant portion of your life working at least 8 hours a day, 5 days a week, 52 weeks in a year, for approximately 70 years of your life. That’s at least 145,600 hours! If the job you’re working at now is providing a living for you and your family, you will have to make dedicate some time outside of your normal work week to work your vision.
That’s right–your vision is your new part-time job. So, when can you start? Can you get up a few hours earlier each morning to spend some time on your vision? Maybe you can work an hour or two after the children have gone to bed. Or, perhaps you can dedicate Saturday mornings to developing your passion. Know this, if you don’t find the time to work on your vision, it will never become a reality.
Make sure the time you spend on developing your passion is productive.Use that dedicated time to increase your knowledge and skill in that area. This may mean getting books, software or other training materials to improve your expertise or fine-tune your craft. Doing research on other people or organizations that are doing something similar is also an excellent way to spark your imagination.
One of the best ways to use this time is for planning. Develop a written plan outlining things such as: What it is you want to do (Vision); Why do you want to do it (Purpose); and Who will benefit (Target Audience). Including the components of a basic business plan (ex. Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats) is useful even if you are not trying to start a business, but are trying to transition from one career to another.
For example, if you are an Administrative Assistant with aspirations of becoming a manager within a company, identify your strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats as it relates to moving into that position. Then list ways in which you can overcome or offset your weaknesses and threats.
Sow some seed!
Now that you’ve actually started working towards your vision, it’s time to sow some seed. Get out of the perpetual planning cycle and sow that talent, product or service into someone’s life at NO CHARGE. You might ask, “Why on earth would I want to do that?” If you expect your vision to reap a harvest, you must first plant a seed. This is a practical concept that makes sense in the real world and in the kingdom of God.
Why do you expect people to pay for your goods or services if you have no previous track record? It is unlikely that they will. If this is your first time doing whatever it is you are trying to do, definitely plan on giving some of your product or your time away free of charge. In the natural, people will have an opportunity to try your product or service. If they are satisfied, more than likely they will use your product or service again. In other words, you will reap the benefits. In the spiritual realm, your giving sets you up to receive.
Take a leap of faith!
The Bible tells us in James 2:17 that “Faith without works is dead.” Of course, James was referring to faith in Christ and the good works that flow out of a sincere Christian. However, I believe this is a principle we can also apply to your dream. It is not enough to research and plan, your vision must become alive and active so other people can see it and experience it.
There’s nothing like setting a specific goal to breathe life into your vision. If you want your vision to leap off the pages of your notebook and start walking, establish an unbreakable timeframe for executing your goal and make it public knowledge. Then, you will feel obligated to reach your goal. For example, if you desire to be a professional artist, set a date for a public exhibit. Secure the facility and start sending out the announcements. This time you won’t let allow fear to stop you from showing your work. Plus, you may just get the spark of initiative you need to finish those incomplete masterpieces gathering dust in your basement.
It’s amazing how trying to accomplish one thing, forces you to accomplish dozens of other important tasks. That aspiring artist will need to get a biography and pictures done for promotional purposes. She will need to identify art enthusiasts and develop a database of people interested in art. She will also need to assign a value to her paintings. After all, someone might want to buy one or even ten!
Make it profitable!
Being profitable means that a venture or undertaking is financially beneficial. Of course, if you plan on making a living from your gifts and abilities, this is very desirable. In reality, it will probably take some time for your vision to grow to the point where it can provide for you and your household. Remember, you are the parent and your vision is the child. The parent must store up for the child until the child comes of age. When the child reaches maturity, it then begins to give back to the parent. Don’t despair, more than likely you won’t have to wait 21 years before your vision can start bringing home the bacon! However, be prepared to work hard and be patient–good things take some time.
In the meanwhile, don’t get discouraged and quit. Know that even before you experience the financial rewards from your vision, there is another type of profitability you can experience immediately. You can make sure that your gift and ability is profitable to God. Does your vision bring glory and honor to God? Does your vision improve the lives of people? Does your vision have the ability to brighten someone’s day or solve a difficult problem? If the answer is yes, to any of these questions, pat yourself on the back because you are already profitable to the kingdom of God.
Philippians 1:6, King James Version
“Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ.”