After living "comfortably" in a box of societal norms, I realized how crazy I was becoming. Post college, I began falling into this deep dark hole of career-depression (a term I made up right now in this post). For many of us, we realize how unfulfilled we are 3-5 years into our professional years. Some sooner. Some later. But we figure it out. (If you are that person who's found passion in your work right out of college - lucky you. It's grim out here for the most of us).
Long story short, I went from auditing, financial consulting, accounting to web design. Random transition but it was a passionate one. And that's the key.
Regardless of what you do professionally, it does not have to be what you do in LIFE. Life is what we make it and it is truly as simple as that. So if you want to sit at a bank all day for a living, by all means go ahead. But know you have the opportunity to do anything you crave to do and all it takes is COMMITMENT. I suggest you even fail a few times. It doesn't just build character, but it builds motivation.
Here are some helpful concepts I learned to help me figure out how to fuel some extra fire into my passion (if you haven't guessed it yet, it's in digital design).
Find Your "Passion" Idols
Let me tell you right now: my favorite online web designers and "shelancers" got me through my whole vision! I would read their resources, browse every tab, study their services (for pricing research) and read about their stories. Find those 2-3 (or 4-5) designers, photographers, crafters or creative idol and learn what you love the most about what they offer. The key is to find people that doing EXACTLY what you are searching to do and use it as motivation. Save their portfolio/website to your book tab and study them. Here are my "passion" idols: House of Evbuomwan | Creative in Transit | White Oak Creative | Nesha Designs | Melyssa Griffin
Be an Expert in Your Passion
I was terrified starting off in an industry in which I had NO (nada) collegiate education or skill. I literally dived into front-end development and worked myself up to the top. To be honest, MySpace was my first platform in which I learned to code. I found myself looking at new design trends all day whether it was through Behance or Creative Market, and one day it all clicked for me. With all this research and testing and mock projects, why don't I offer up what I learned? Whatever it is that you are pursuing to do, be an expert at it. Read about it, learn about it, practice it, fail at it. Skillshare, Skillcrush and Freecodecamp were my tools of learning when it came to design and coding. The best thing you can do for yourself and your future clients is to have confidence in your work and your products. Nothing fuels confidence more than knowledge. Educate yourself. You will always be learning something knew but start off with a good foundation.
Research the market in the field you want to tap into. What's the average price for the work you want to do? What are the best affiliate links for your blog to monetize from? What platforms can I sell my products on? What platforms can I sell digital products from? What will attract users to my website? Understand the in and outs of what it takes to create the type of business your passion is in. I know bloggers who make a middle class salary selling nothing! All they do is write. Anyone can write... But how you market your work is essential. Researching is critical. If you need help starting off, here is a quick free Creative Business Template I have for you to get started.
Create A Website
Short and simple. Create an online platform where people can reach you. In today's day, it is hard to start a business with no digital presence. You need to reach far and wide. Try using Squarespace or Wordpress to launch your site. Consider hiring a designer in the future once you become established (shameless plug).
Now it's time sell yourself. Create a media kit, a pitch or whatever it is you need to put yourself out there. Lay out your services and products with all that research and knowledge you've fed your passion with and SELL IT. Remember - no idea or skill should be underestimated. Your skill and knowledge may seem easy to you, but it's a valuable asset that someone else struggles with. Etsy is a great place to start for tangible products. I use Creative Market for digital products. If you provide services like coaching and education, Teachable is a great platform to host your courses and webinars.
Think Local (Your Social Circle)
It took me a good two years to finally come to my senses and start my freelancing business, and the best decision I made was to start with my close social circle.
Within two months of launching my creative design services, I booked 6 clients and secured $2,000 in revenue.
For real? Yes, for real. And guess what? ALL of my clients so far have been friends, friends of friends, and even parents of friends. Let your inner circle do the marketing and promotion for you. If your circle won't do it, who will? Let those referrals help you get off your feet!
Now that you are fueled with energy - grab the free resources below to help you get started:
If you are interested in finding more ways to launch your business or monetize your passion, please show your interest by leaving a comment below and signing up for my mailing list! I want to get a feel for how many people need more guidance. I am looking to launch an email course that will provide more detail.