Should you turn your hobby into your career?

Should you turn your hobby into your career?

Should you turn your hobby into your career?

There’s a new trend in town: follow your passion. 

Social media has given people the platform to monetize their passions. If you are good at making any product, whether it’s clothing, bags, books, phone covers, art, anything at all, you can sell it. The idea of making your hobby or passion into your career came out of the realization that you can make easy money from things you are talented at, without having to put in too much effort. 

Studies persistently show that most people are dissatisfied with their chosen careers. They are unhappy with the work they do, or the given tasks, and often become complacent soon after joining even if they initially enjoyed the work. One apparent reason is that people aren’t heavily invested in their chosen careers and pick them as something that will make them money more than anything else.

The obvious solution, at least for our generation, seems to be to make a career out of the thing you enjoy doing, like your hobby. But is it practical? Should you take something that you love doing, such as sketching portraits, or writing poetry, and turn it into a 9-5 job?

Consider why you enjoy your hobby in the first place. It’s a recreational activity that you do when you’re stressed, or have time to spare. You enjoy it because there is no pressure to produce, and nothing depends on how fast and often you provide.

Once your passions become attached to monetary value, they lose their relaxation factor.  They stop being fun and exciting, and rather than looking forward to it, you start to worry about the time it takes to get it done. You stress about making it bigger, better, more successful, more innovative, and the reason you used to do it in the first place gets lost somewhere in the back of your mind.

Another factor to consider is whether turning your hobby into a career is sustainable. If your passion is too much of a niche, and the target market for it is too small, should you give up everything and try to make money out of it? Making miniature animals out of paper mache might help you relax after a long day, but how many people are going to be interested and stay interested in buying them? 

The idea of turning your hobby into a career is rooted in a very privileged position. The kind of funds required for this are not available to everyone, and most people do not have the freedom to give up on a steady salary and begin working on something they enjoy. People have other responsibilities they need to take care of. There’s also the fact that being your boss is not something that everyone can do. 

Unless you have a strong work ethic, the funds, and the market, it is not the best idea to turn something you love doing into a 9 to 5 job.

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