I talk a lot on The Start of Happiness about living your passion daily and turning your passion into a lifestyle. Why do I do this?
Passionate people are more successful
Passionate people have more fulfilling relationships
Passionate people are happier
Ultimately, passionate people live more satisfying and fulfilling lives.
This is exactly what The Start of Happiness is about. I previously spoke about being busy and how this doesn’t necessary mean that you need to be stressed or feel overwhelmed. A key philosophy for me is to Get Busy Being Happy. Simply put, this means spend your time and energy doing the things you love as much as and as often as you can!
What is scary is that only 36% of people have some kind of understanding of what they want to do in their life. In addition to this, only 29% of people set goals at the start of each year. When you’re turning your passion into a lifestyle, it is fundamental that you know what your ideal life looks like and also that you have a clear, actionable path in getting you there.
4 Key Strategies for Turning Your Passion into a Thriving Lifestyle
1) Start small
If you have accessed the Happiness Toolkit you may have read my free guide on the “The First 6 Steps for Creating Change in Your Life”. One of the key messages in this is that change is like going to the gym. To experience the benefits you need to start small and you need to be consistent. You need to start building your change muscle.
This is no different for turning your passion into a lifestyle. You need to start building your change muscle by incorporating it into your daily life and slowly building momentum and your belief that your life can change.
Start by incorporating your passion into your day 5 minutes at a time.
Perhaps its writing – find 5 minutes to write a paragraph of your novel.
Perhaps it’s exercising – find 5 minutes to do some pushups or sit-ups.
Perhaps it’s investing – find 5 minutes to research the market
Whatever it is, make sure that you are living your passion DAILY. Be consistent with your practices. You get to choose how you spend your time and energy, so why not spend it doing what you love?
My passion is working on The Start of Happiness and helping others reach their full potential and living more fulfilling and happier lives. I’m currently on the path of living out this passion more and more each day.
Over time, you’ll start to believe that you start to incorporate your passion more into your daily life, and you will work out methods for making this happen.
2) Be Willing to Say No
Changing your life can be hard work. Seriously. I’m not here to tell you that changing your life is as simple as quitting your job and then to simply start to live your passion fully the next day.
I understand that people have mortgages to pay, family’s to consider and circumstances to be balanced.
Your time is your most precious resource.
To be able to change your life and turn your passion into a career, you need to prioritise where you spend your time and energy. This will require you having the ability to say no to certain meetings, functions or events and being able to say yes to spending time growing your career around your passion.
3) Have a Clear, Actionable Plan in Place
As I mentioned above, it may not be appropriate to simply quit your current career and start a new one around your passion. If it was this easy, then everyone would be doing it!
You need to have a clear, actionable plan in place. To help you develop your action plan, ask yourself some questions such as:
What will my day look like when I am fully living my passion?
How will I spend my time and energy in the next week, month, and year to be able to achieve this?
What areas do I need to focus on and prioritise first to enable this to become a reality?
What sacrifices do I need to make?
What challenges might I face?
What support networks or relationships do I need to develop?
Ensure that your action plan is SMART – specific, measureable, achievable, relevant and time-bound.
The key is to be realistic and ensure you can balance your life (e.g. mortgage & family). To do this, this may mean that it will take you 3 years of developing your career around your passion on the side while you continue to work full-time until your business is making ends meet.
4) Spend Time Around Those That Are Doing it Already
What is your passion?
If it’s photography, spend time around people that are full-time photographers.
If it’s martial arts, spend time around people that are full-time Kung-Fu experts.
It it’s property investing, spend time around people that are full-time property investors.
Spending time around those that are already doing what you want to do is one of the fastest ways of being able to achieve success.
Being around like-minded people will help you learn from them. They may be willing to guide or support you on your own journey. You will be able to ask questions, get feedback and simply learn from watching their behaviours and interactions.
How to do this?
Find out where these people are. Where do they congregate? Are their courses or seminars that people attend? Are their online forums? Do you already know of businesses doing what you love? Contact them directly and participate in the events and communities that these people participate in.
There is no magic pill for turning your passion into full-time lifestyle. However, nothing is stopping you from living out your passions daily and making a start. So what are you waiting for?
Of course, if you have less commitments at this stage of your life, for example, no mortgage or no children, then you may have an advantage from starting earlier in your life to build a full-time career around your passion.
If you are late teens or in your twenties, then there is absolutely no better time to start your career in the direction of your passion.
If you are in your thirties, forties, fifties and beyond and you already have a number of commitments, still there is nothing stopping you from living your passion on a daily basis. How you spend your time and energy is your choice. To turn your passion into a full-time career, it may take some extra work and it will be key for you to have a clear plan and a balanced life.
The principles listed above are true for EVERYBODY.
If you haven’t already, you can join the exclusive Action Team in preparation for the Change Your Life course coming in 2013. You will learn step-by-step how to find your purpose in life and work towards it. Plus you will get early access and special offers.
Here’s to living your passion!
Lovely post, you summed it up so well Brendan!
Thank you for sending this across..
I have started small towards living my dreams and working towards it.. almost one day at a time! 🙂
That’s awesome to hear that you’re working towards your goals. Step-by-step and day-by-day you will get there closer and faster.
Hi Brendan. I love what you say about starting small. Five years ago I started to Try New Things and I committed to changing my life by trying something new, big or small, but every day. My life Today looks completely different and I have left a less than desirable job. So I am sticking with the try new things mantra because after trying so many new things, I have less fear and more willingness to leap and grow. Thanks for the great post.
Thanks for such an awesome comment! I love hearing how this is actually being implemented and hearing about real-life success stories.
I am an absolute true believer of the small steps lead to big things. Every single thing we do is ‘progress’. You just have to make sure that your progressing in the right direction.
“If you are late teens or in your twenties, then there is absolutely no better time to start your career in the direction of your passion….if you are in your thirties, forties, fifties and beyond”
I like how you incorporated other generations. Following and making a living from your passion is what we all want. It takes such dedication but I think this generation believes that we can actually live our passion, that we don’t have to give up our dreams. I think this generation may believe it more than previous generations.
About the 30’s, 40’s etc. It’s something I’m personally trying to make sense of. How do we balance these aspirations as we journey through life? Research shows that people move through three stages of career aspiration; from idealistic achievement, to pragmatic endurance, to re-inventive contribution. I’m hoping to grapple with this process more. Until then it’s good to see such dedication toward a purposeful life, and less toward just cashing in.
It’s true that Gen Y is very much of the mindset that ‘you can do anything you put your mind to’. This is how the generation has been brought up to believe. I like it how you mention the 3 stages of career aspiration, however. I have not heard of this before but it makes perfect sense.
I would love to know what stage you feel you are currently at?
Great post Brendan, reaching out to the people already doing what you want to do is one of the best ways to get going! Especially when you present yourself, and are open, they usually are willing to listen and help/give advice!
Love your site- don’t worry be happy!
Thanks for the awesome comment!
Great points… You do need to be open and willing to learn from them. The other key aspect is that you need to ACT on what they say. They have been in your shoes before and know how to grow into bigger ones. Take their advice and apply it to your own life.