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A Simple Guide to Find Your Passion (And Building a Business Around It)

A Simple Guide to Find Your Passion (And Building a Business Around It)

Have you ever wanted to live life on your own terms?

Have you thought about going after what you truly feel called to do, but not done it?

You’re not alone.

We’re all in the same boat. We’re here for a reason. And what excites you is trying to pull you in the right direction.

But so often we resist.

We’re scared, worried, and most of all, overwhelmed.

Going after something meaningful takes courage. The fear will never go away. And the uncertainty will always be there. Those are not bad things.

They’re good, because they mean you’re on the right track. When you’re both excited and scared, you’re doing well.

What is Passion Anyway?

The term passion has been thrown around a lot lately.

To me it simply means doing something you enjoy right now. It doesn’t mean you have to be 110% passionate about whatever you’re doing, all the time. It simply means that there is a certain amount of excitement in your life.

If you’d like to use another term for passion, by all means do so. The word itself has no meaning. What’s important is what the word is pointing to, which is the feeling of joy.

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For the sake of this article, I’ll stick with the word passion.

Why Should You Find Your Passion?

When you find and follow your passion, things change.

When you let go of living a “logical” life, you free yourself up to let life unfold.

You let go of trying to control every little detail, because in reality, you’ve never been in control. Trying to mold the external world to your liking doesn’t work, which is why it leaves you exhausted.

Finding your passion makes life easier, but it will also make it harder. Going after something meaningful is scary. It takes time. But it is also well worth it. I started on this path over five years ago. I stumbled, failed, and gave up many times.

Today, I get paid to do what I love.

I can do what I want, when I want and from where I want. It still amazes me to this day.

The 3 Pillars to Finding Your Profitable Passion

Finding your passion is tough. When you try to find a profitable passion, it becomes even harder.

Almost everyone has money issues. What I mean is that we view money negatively, and when you bring that into the passion equation, everything breaks down.

This is not an article about dealing with your beliefs about money, but it is something you should pay attention to on this path. There are three main pillars I work with when I help people find their profitable passion.

1. Excitement

The first one is excitement. What do you feel excited about doing?

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What do you feel passionate about?

Don’t try to overanalyze or think too much about the future. No one can predict the future. There’s no use in trying to control it.

Focus on what your feelings are telling you, and go from there.

2. Skills

The next step is to look at your skills. What are you good at?

Think broadly. If you’ve worked in an office as a secretary for 10 years, you may think you have no skills.

But think about what you were really good at. Were you a Jedi at organizing things? Were you amazingly productive?

Then dive deeper into those. There’s so much for you to discover, if you just let yourself play with this. If you’re currently in school or just out of college, look at your life experiences. What have been the common themes?

3. Demand

And finally, in order to create a profitable business around your passion, there has to be demand.

Look at what’s already out there. If you’re into productivity, there are a lot of things you could do. You could help businesses become more productive.

You could help regular people simplify their life. It all depends on where excitement, skill and demand intersect. And remember, if you don’t have any skills, get some.

Leave the excuses behind.

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The Mistake People Make

Right about now most of my clients get overwhelmed.

They feel like they could never do this.

The reason they feel overwhelmed is because they’re trying to figure it out. Stop doing that. Let the future be uncertain. The only thing you have to do is take the next step, which is to figure out what you’re excited about.

If you don’t know, then it doesn’t matter what you do. Figuring out what you don’t want to do is as useful as figuring out what you want to do.

Follow the excitement.

Follow your heart.

And remember to breathe. This is not an easy journey.

The Anti-Quick Fix Mindset

Don’t try to force clarity.

Let life unfold in whatever way it does.

You can only do what you can do. I’ve learned this the hard way.

I’ve always wanted to make things happen now, but it seems the universe doesn’t quite bend to my will, yet. I’ve had to adapt. I’ve had to learn to be more open. To accept how things are. And deal with them.

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If you’re just starting out on this journey, let the struggle be okay. Embrace your fears, worries and all the wanting to figure things out.

All the wanting to get it perfect.

What Now?

You’ll never get it perfect.

And you’ll never get rid of the fear. Not until you start.

If you want to find your passion and build a business around it, your next step is simple: move forward. If you haven’t found your passion, start following your excitement.

If you know what you’re passionate about, find a way to blend it with your skills and market demand.

In short, take the next step, wherever you are.

Excuses will pop up. Fears will try to hold you down. But you have to be relentless.

You have to keep going.

You can live a life on your own terms. But you have to be willing to take the first step.

Featured photo credit:  young woman sitting on a rock on a hill and taking pictures with a camera via Shutterstock

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Last Updated on November 19, 2019

20 Time Management Tips to Super Boost Your Productivity

20 Time Management Tips to Super Boost Your Productivity

Are you usually punctual or late? Do you finish things within the time you stipulate? Do you hand in your reports/work on time? Are you able to accomplish what you want to do before deadlines? Are you a good time manager?

If your answer is “no” to any of the questions above, that means you’re not managing your time as well as you want. Here are 20 time management tips to help you manage time better:

1. Create a Daily Plan

Plan your day before it unfolds. Do it in the morning or even better, the night before you sleep. The plan gives you a good overview of how the day will pan out. That way, you don’t get caught off guard. Your job for the day is to stick to the plan as best as possible.

2. Peg a Time Limit to Each Task

Be clear that you need to finish X task by 10am, Y task by 3pm, and Z item by 5:30pm. This prevents your work from dragging on and eating into time reserved for other activities.

3. Use a Calendar

Having a calendar is the most fundamental step to managing your daily activities. If you use outlook or lotus notes, calendar come as part of your mailing software.

I use it. It’s even better if you can sync your calendar to your mobile phone and other hardwares you use – that way, you can access your schedule no matter where you are. Here’re the 10 Best Calendar Apps to Stay on Track .

Find out more tips about how to use calendar for better time management here: How to Use a Calendar to Create Time and Space

4. Use an Organizer

An organizer helps you to be on top of everything in your life. It’s your central tool to organize information, to-do lists, projects, and other miscellaneous items.

These Top 15 Time Management Apps and Tools can help you organize better, pick one that fits your needs.

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5. Know Your Deadlines

When do you need to finish your tasks? Mark the deadlines out clearly in your calendar and organizer so you know when you need to finish them.

But make sure you don’t make these 10 Common Mistakes When Setting Deadlines.

6. Learn to Say “No”

Don’t take on more than you can handle. For the distractions that come in when you’re doing other things, give a firm no. Or defer it to a later period.

Leo Babauta, the founder of Zen Habits has some great insights on how to say no: The Gentle Art of Saying No

7. Target to Be Early

When you target to be on time, you’ll either be on time or late. Most of the times you’ll be late. However, if you target to be early, you’ll most likely be on time.

For appointments, strive to be early. For your deadlines, submit them earlier than required.

Learn from these tips about how to prepare yourself to be early, instead of just in time.

8. Time Box Your Activities

This means restricting your work to X amount of time. Why time boxing is good for you? Here’re 10 reasons why you should start time-boxing.

You can also read more about how to do time boxing here: #5 of 13 Strategies To Jumpstart Your Productivity.

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9. Have a Clock Visibly Placed Before You

Sometimes we are so engrossed in our work that we lose track of time. Having a huge clock in front of you will keep you aware of the time at the moment.

10. Set Reminders 15 Minutes Before

Most calendars have a reminder function. If you have an important meeting to attend, set that alarm 15 minutes before.

You can learn more about how reminders help you remember everything in this article: The Importance of Reminders (And How to Make a Reminder That Works)

11. Focus

Are you multi-tasking so much that you’re just not getting anything done? If so, focus on just one key task at one time. Multitasking is bad for you.

Close off all the applications you aren’t using. Close off the tabs in your browser that are taking away your attention. Focus solely on what you’re doing. You’ll be more efficient that way.

Lifehack’s CEO has written a definitive guide on how to focus, learn the tips: How to Focus and Maximize Your Productivity (the Definitive Guide)

12. Block out Distractions

What’s distracting you in your work? Instant messages? Phone ringing? Text messages popping in?

I hardly ever use chat nowadays. The only times when I log on is when I’m not intending to do any work. Otherwise it gets very distracting.

When I’m doing important work, I also switch off my phone. Calls during this time are recorded and I contact them afterward if it’s something important. This helps me concentrate better.

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Find more tips on how to minimize distractions to achieve more in How to Minimize Distraction to Get Things Done

13. Track Your Time Spent

When you start to track your time, you’re more aware of how you spend your time. For example, you can set a simple countdown timer to make sure that you finish a task within a period of time, say 30 minutes or 1 hour. The time pressure can push you to stay focused and work more efficiently.

You can find more time tracking apps here and pick one that works for you.

14. Don’t Fuss About Unimportant Details

You’re never get everything done in exactly the way you want. Trying to do so is being ineffective.

Trying to be perfect does you more harm than good, learn here about how perfectionism kills your productivity and how to ditch the perfectionism mindset.

15. Prioritize

Since you can’t do everything, learn to prioritize the important and let go of the rest.

Apply the 80/20 principle which is a key principle in prioritization. You can also take up this technique to prioritize everything on your plate: How to Prioritize Right in 10 Minutes and Work 10X Faster

16. Delegate

If there are things that can be better done by others or things that are not so important, consider delegating. This takes a load off and you can focus on the important tasks.

When you delegate some of your work, you free up your time and achieve more. Learn about how to effectively delegate works in this guide: How to Delegate Work (the Definitive Guide for Successful Leaders)

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17. Batch Similar Tasks Together

For related work, batch them together.

For example, my work can be categorized into these core groups:

  1. writing (articles, my upcoming book)
  2. coaching
  3. workshop development
  4. business development
  5. administrative

I batch all the related tasks together so there’s synergy. If I need to make calls, I allocate a time slot to make all my calls. It really streamlines the process.

18. Eliminate Your Time Wasters

What takes your time away your work? Facebook? Twitter? Email checking? Stop checking them so often.

One thing you can do is make it hard to check them – remove them from your browser quick links / bookmarks and stuff them in a hard to access bookmarks folder. Replace your browser bookmarks with important work-related sites.

While you’ll still checking FB/Twitter no doubt, you’ll find it’s a lower frequency than before.

19. Cut off When You Need To

The number one reason why things overrun is because you don’t cut off when you have to.

Don’t be afraid to intercept in meetings or draw a line to cut-off. Otherwise, there’s never going to be an end and you’ll just eat into the time for later.

20. Leave Buffer Time In-Between

Don’t pack everything closely together. Leave a 5-10 minute buffer time in between each tasks. This helps you wrap up the previous task and start off on the next one.

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Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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