From passion to business: how to take the leap in 5 steps
I mean, wouldn’t it be wonderful to be paid to do what you love?
Shocker: it is!
Picture yourself waking up every morning feeling excited about starting your day, instead of repeatedly snoozing off your alarm because you dread getting up to go to work!
I remember when that used to be me…
Now imagine being able to pay all your bills with your passion based business, maybe even quitting your job one day, or simply having a side hustle to make some extra cash, or as a “plan B “for the future.
Oh, if only it was possible! Wait, it is possible! I did it myself, 5 years ago, in my forties, without any previous business experience or 6 figures investment.
Do you know what the hardest part was?
Believing that I could.
Believing that I could turn my very weird interests into a business that would allow me to replace my very good salary.
People thought I was crazy- I thought I was crazy- to think that I could quit my job of twenty years (a job that I had chosen in my twenties, loved deeply, but slowly had come to resent for several different reasons, some of which were boredom, lack of growth opportunities, company’s financial issues).
But I wasn’t. I was just scared, full of questions and I didn’t know anybody who could answer them.
This is why I am writing this article today. To help you the way I wish somebody had helped me five years ago, so that you don’t talk yourself out of it before you even try, as I almost did.
OK, there’s also another reason…
As a Life & Business Coach, I really enjoy helping others building their own business! It’s really satisfying to see my clients turning their dreams into reality!
And just so you know, there’s never been a better moment that now to start a business, especially one where you get to share your passion and knowledge with people all around the world.
In fact, you probably already have everything you need to start it.
So let’s not waste any more time!
1 – Identify your passion
What? Yes, that’s exactly what I just said!
You have no idea how important it is to identify what your passion really is, or which of your hobbies you can turn into a business.
A “passion” isn’t just something you like to read or watch videos about.
It’s something you actually practice in your life, possibly on a daily basis or often enough to say you’re good at it or know a lot about it. Something you do only once or twice a year or only when holidays won’t cut it.
If you have more than one hobby or interest and don’t know which one to pick, don’t worry, read the next points and you’ll see that you’ll eventually figure out which one could be the winner.
2 – Choose a service or product
What will your business be about?
How exactly will you make money? Will you sell a product, a service or both?
What will they be?
Say you’re passionate about fitness: are you going to sell exercising gear or fitness clothes, or are you going to offer training services? If so, what kind of? In person or online? For whom?
You get it, right?
There are so many different options and only you know what’s the best for you.
This is something you need to figure out pretty soon and not only because you have to create those product or service, but also because their pricing will help you figure out how many items you need to sell on a daily, monthly or yearly basis to meet your earning goals.
Which takes us to the next point.
3 – Decisions, decisions, decisions
Being clear about what you want from your business and what you need to make it happen is essential to a successful venture. This is why you have to start making some decisions.
Will your business be a side hustle, or do you plan to eventually quit your job and just live off your passion?
This is a crucial decision, one that will determine your course of action as you build your biz. If you’re planning to eventually quit your job, you need to be able to replace your income and that means putting a fair amount of effort since day one.
By the way, will you be able to work on your project in your spare time or will you need to take some time off work? Would switching to part time (in your current job or in a different one) speed up your transition?
You also need to look into your financial situation and assess how much you can invest in your business (nothing at all is not a good start, but you don’t need to put all your savings into it!) and create a plan.
Don’t be put off now! If you plan to work from home and offer consulting services or creating an online course, you can start with a few hundred euros or dollars!
4 – Certify your skills
This is one of my obsessions when I work one to one with my clients!
Unfortunately though, this seems to be the one step most people want to skip.
I will never understand someone who claims to be passionate about something, yet they’re unwilling to learn more about it!
In my experience this is a sign that they’ve probably chosen the wrong hobby or that they’re underestimating how hard it is to get paying clients.
I’m going to be very clear about it: YOU MUST!
Remember we’re talking about a passion related business here, not one based on your professional or academic achievements, formal education, current career or previous job titles.
It doesn’t matter how long you’ve been practicing yoga or how good your friends say your vegan muffins are! You need to have a certification saying that you can teach yoga or bake muffins without killing people!
When you go from amateur to professional, you’re not going to sell your stuff to your friends (breaking news: your friends won’t be willing to pay for your products or services and expect them for free; alternatively they’ll all of a sudden disappear, show absolutely no interest in what you do and even choose to buy from your competitors).
You’ll be catering to total strangers and believe me: those strangers won’t open their wallets just because you say your cakes taste so good!
You don’t have to necessarily go back to college, unless that’s what you want to do, of course!
Nowadays you can learn, improve and certify any kind of skills in a few months or over a couple of weekends, depending on the skill and your expertise level. And you can do this either in person or online, which means you can learn from the best, even if they’re not close to you.
Isn’t that amazing?! I think it is!
5 – Start doing
No matter how scary it sounds, you need to start!
Take your business as an adventure and don’t be afraid of making mistakes.
You will make many anyway.
And that’s how you learn what works and what doesn’t.
Start by sharing what you do on social media, you don’t have to be on all of them, just pick one you feel comfortable in.
Ideally you should choose the one the best showcases what you do and even better, the one where your ideal clients hang out.
Write about it or create videos and show how you can help people.
Follow people in your niche, connect with them and learn from them, but please DO NOT COPY THEIR WORK!
Connecting with the experts in your field will give you an idea of what your potential clients are looking for, which problems they have and which products and services they’re interested in.
Show up authentically, be yourself and don’t pretend to be a pro if you’re just starting out, it never ends well.
Start offering your product or service for free to test it, to gain some experience and testimonials. This is also a good way to figure out if what you are offering is indeed something people want, need and are willing to pay for.
Lastly, remember that someone out there is looking exactly for what you can offer and that even if you are a beginner you can still help others. Not everyone is looking for or can afford the “top business” and that’s when you can be the perfect choice for them.
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This is what some of my clients say about me. Thank you!
Working with Chiara has been a stimulating and enriching experience. Chiara has been a valuable ally during a transition, fully present even in between sessions.
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