Dear Dr. Rob,
I have a good idea of what I want to do with my career. I just can’t figure out how to get paid for it. What do you suggest?
I am pleased that you have successfully completed the first three parts of the “Finding Your Sweet Spot Exercise.” You’ve explored what your passions are. You have reviewed and focused on your core strengths, unique talents and experiences. And thirdly, you have aligned your core values with your desired career direction. Now the tough part, who will pay for what you want to do?
Here are some steps that you will have to consider to figure this out:
- Explore how much money is enough for you.
- If you’re in a relationship, review with your partner your assumptions about how much is enough.
- Make a hard analysis about how much of a risk taker you are about money and how anxious you get when there’s no secure path for making money every month. Entrepreneurial activities are not for those who are uncomfortable with risk taking and require a steady paycheck.
- Look to whom will benefit from what you do, whether it’s a product to make or a service to provide. It’s not about whether you value what you do, but it’s about whether your client or employer values and needs your service or product.
- Determine whether the service or product you develop will relieve someone else’s pain. Remember: people will pay much more readily to relieve pain than to seek pleasure.
- These days, people are also willing to pay for exceptional experiences. Creative types need to think about how they can create a great experience which will be valued in the market place.
- Look beyond money to the important resources of time and energy. For some people having adequate time is more important than having a lot of money.
Harry, there’s no easy answer for who will pay you to do what you love to do. If you are passionate enough, apply your talents enough, and be true to yourself, the chances are good you will find a way to make an adequate living. But remember, you will be facing difficult challenges and needing to call upon your very best self to achieve your dream. Those who commit to pursuing their dream often find unexpected resources to help them along the way.