A Case for NOT Doing What You Love
Follow your dreams! Do what you love!
Yep, I’m sure you’ve heard it before. And, if you’re anywhere near the entrepreneurial or self-help world, you’ve probably heard it at least once already today. But, I’m here to argue a different case:
Doing what you love is a recipe for disaster.
Actually, let me rephrase that, trying to turn what you love into a money-making, successful business is a recipe for disaster. I know because I’ve been there. And I’ve also heard a lot of smart people (a la Tai Lopez and Elizabeth Gilbert) echo the same not-always-well-received sentiment.
A few years ago I decided to “follow your dreams” and “do what you love,” taking my passion for yoga and sharing its teachings and turning it into an online business. I’ll admit it was fun. I had a blast filming hundreds of videos and DVDs, sourcing products and writing about it constantly (to the tune of 20 something books), but I also got burnt out super fast.
Because I was doing what I loved, I had a hard time taking a break from it. And, when I did break away from it, I found myself no longer able to relax and unwind because the thing that helped me do that (yoga) had turned into my business. Rather than just enjoying my practice, I constantly felt like I was working.
My trying to monetize doing what I love made me fall out of love with it. It was too personal.
No longer enjoying what I thought would be my “dream business,” I stopped teaching and sold the business, stepping back to decide what was next. While planning our next move, my husband and I got some interesting advice: Rather than trying to think about what you want, think about what others need. Or, in other words, don’t try to cage your passion and squeeze money out of it.
We made a list of problems we’ve encountered both personally and professionally over the years and started to look for business opportunities – and that’s exactly how Buzzy Blogs was born.
A striking difference from the yoga business, Buzzy Blogs was born out of a desire to help others in business. I enjoy working on it as much as I enjoy writing and creating content for each and every one of our clients, but I’ve never confused it for L.O.V.E.
I LOVE my family. I LOVE my kids. I LOVE my quiet moments in meditation. I LOVE baking for others. I LOVE walking into Anthropologie and thumbing my way through a favorite book.
I LIKE creating content for awesome business owners. (Okay, I LIKE, like it – but it’s still business.)
Writing for others isn’t intensely personal. It’s not something I turn to when I’m having a bad day or in need of inspiration or support. It’s creative and fun and fulfilling, but it allows me to keep it professional and separate from my life, which is exactly why I can come back to it every day without feeling completely overwhelmed or drained.
When you do what you like, not what you love, you create clear boundaries, containers that allow you to know when they’ve been filled – so that you can get home and fill up your own.
About the Author
Julie Schoen is the founder of Buzzy Blogs. She is also a best-selling author, copywriter, yoga instructor and entrepreneur. She lives in New Mexico with her three children, her husband and their two dogs.