Why It’s Important to Work with What You Love

Do what you love-- it's the path to success.As you try to decide what to do for your first microbusiness, you may be tempted to research trends in order to find the most profitable niche. Research has it’s place, of course, but it’s not the only tool for this part of the business process.

Choosing a business according to what seems profitable at the moment sounds good, but often ends badly. For example, a writer may look at the current bestseller list and write a knock-off of what’s there this month. Anyone want to read a World War II memoir with vampires? How about a business how-to in the voice of a five-year-old?

It’s a bit like choosing a college major because it’s practical. My oldest son decided to be an accounting major because accounting is a stable, reasonably well-regarded profession, and seemed secure. Unfortunately, he had spent virtually his entire previous life immersed in history and classical music, and had little interest in or aptitude for numbers. It wasn’t long before he reached the point at which he’d sign up for a weekly root canal rather than take another accounting class. Not only was it miserable, but he wasn’t half as good at it as students who found the subject fascinating.

If you choose a microbusiness that feels like work; if you decide on something you loathe just because you think it’s more practical than doing what you love, chances are you’ll fail. Every one of us has been granted some sort of gift– something that we do well and love to do, and we are meant to pursue it.

When you pursue someone else’s gift, you’re going the wrong direction and it’s going to feel hard. It’s going to be hard, too, because fiber of your being will resist doing the wrong thing. When you begin to pursue your own gift, to do the work you were meant to do, things will feel easier. You’ll be rowing with the current, rather than against it, and you’ll feel the difference.

The son who tried the accounting major sailed happily through the rest of his college career as a history major. When he answered the three questions in the “Find Your Heart-Based Business” post, music narrowly edged history in his sweet spot. He found a microbusiness as a freelance soloist and choir ringer, performs in local opera, and continues to pursue his music education. Hours and hours of rehearsals, practice, and performance are a joy, because he’s using his gift.

As I write, though, I hear many of you wondering how it’s possible to earn money doing something you love. Who’s going to pay you to do [fill in the blank with your gift]? Shouldn’t work be difficult, maybe even unpleasant? Don’t worry, I’m not reading your mind. I’ve just heard the same doubts, questions, and arguments over and over. I’ll talk about them in the next post . . .

Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others . . .

I Peter 4:10

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