Could Your Hobby Become Your Business

Could Your Hobby Become Your Business

On the face of it, turning your hobby into your primary source of income sounds like the ultimate dream. Someone very wise once said that if you do what you love for a living, you’ll never work a day in your life. In fact, we know exactly who said it; it was Mark Twain. If you have a hobby that you excel at, it’s probably crossed your mind at some point to turn your back on the rat race, and see if you can make a living out of doing your hobby full time.

The first thing we should tell you about this is that it’s a risk, but you probably knew that already. Giving up a steady job for self-employment is the biggest gamble you could ever take. The first thing you should do is make sure it’s an informed gamble. By that, we mean you should assess it as you would gamble in poker, as opposed to a gamble in mobile slots in related casinos. You have no way of knowing what will happen next after you’ve placed a bet on a mobile slots game. With poker, your ability to read the situation will determine your likelihood of success. If the thought of making money from your hobby feels more like a mobile slots bet than a game of poker, back away from it now! If, however, you feel like you have the skills and knowledge to pursue it further, read on.

Knowing whether it’s time to say goodbye to work and hello to your new hobby-based business isn’t easy, and so asking yourself a few basic questions will help you to determine whether the time is right to strike out on your own. Here are five questions you need to be confident in your answers to before you elect to proceed any further down the line of making a hobby into a business.

Are You A Salesperson?

If you are, then great. If you aren’t, then you need to become one. If the only person involved in making money from your hobby is you, then you need to be able to sell it. Depending on what your hobby is, you may or may not have created products or provided services for friends or family before. It’s likely you either provided said goods or services for free, or received a nominal payment in return. That isn’t going to sustain you.

You need to have the confidence to ask for more money if you’re going to make a business out of the hobby. Not only that, you need to be able to make a complete stranger interested in it, and to be steadfast on price. You need to be able to market yourself, too. You are now a brand, and so is your hobby. You need an identity and a pitch. If you’re not from a sales background this will probably be completely alien to you, so you’ll have to learn fast. Fortunately, free guides on the mindset of salespeople are available on the internet.

Why Do You Do Your Hobby?

The answer to this question is not just ‘because I love it.’ If you didn’t love it, it wouldn’t be a hobby! Beyond loving it, your hobby probably serves a specific function. Is it how you cheer yourself up? Is it how you unwind after a long day? Alternatively is it the thing you do for a little ‘me’ time and an escape from the world? If the answer to any (or all) of those questions is ‘yes,’ you may be about to experience a problem.

The moment your hobby becomes your business, it’s longer your escapism route, and it’s no longer the thing you turn to for comfort. With that stripped away from it, you might be surprised how quickly the love wears off. To combat this, you may need another hobby to replace it with. If you have one already, you’re already halfway there.

Can You Perform Your Hobby To A Schedule?

When you’re carrying out your hobby for your own amusement or enjoyment, it doesn’t matter how long it takes. If you’re making something or doing something for friends and family in your own free time, they’re unlikely to make demands on you in terms of deadlines either. A paying customer isn’t likely to have any such understanding. They want to know when they’re going to receive their product or service – and you may frequently find they want it faster than you’re comfortable with.

You therefore need to ask yourself if you can work any faster with your hobby than you already do. If so, would going so fast to take all the enjoyment out of it for you? If the answer to that question is ‘yes.’ are you sure it’s going to make you any happier than the job you already do?

Will Anybody Buy It?

This is a fundamental question, and it’s plainly the most important one too. However good you are at your hobby, would anyone actually pay you enough to live on in return for whatever product or service you provide by doing it? Many people might admire your hobby, but admiration doesn’t always translate into sales. You can admire a sunset without buying it. You can admire a dog without ever owning one. Curiosity doesn’t equate to financial interest.

You might not think it’s possible to answer this question until you take the plunge and start trading, but there is another way. You can now sell most products and services part-time through websites live Fiverr.com and Upwork.com. As a starting point, try selling your hobby through there first of all in your spare time. If you can’t generate any interest, the unfortunate truth is that you probably don’t have a market.

Are You Happy For Your Life To Depend On It?

This question feels quite existential, but it’s very important. You might be ‘good’ at what you do for a hobby, but would you be business-level competitive if you turned it into a job? Are you the best person at it that you know? Are you the best person at it in your local area? If you’re not, who is, and are they already making money from it?

If your hobby becomes your business, your life and well-being will literally depend on your ability to do it well. You therefore have to be confident that you’re not merely ‘good’ at it; you’re exceptional, and you’ll stand out in a crowd.

These may be hard questions to answer, but setting up a business is hard work. If you’re not confident in your answers, it might be best just to let your hobby be a hobby. If you are, then perhaps it’s time to change your life?

To read more on topics like this, check out the lifestyle category.

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