It is a very popular saying: “turn your hobby into your business and you never have to work a day in your life”. But are you sure you want your hobby to be your business?
Many women who start a business do so by turning their hobby into a business. Usually, it starts as a nice side hustle. Suppose you are great at baking and decorating cakes. You love it. So why not bake the occasional cake for family or friends and get paid to do it? When successful friends and family of your friends know the way to your kitchen and before you know it, you are running a small business baking cakes. It seems so much fun and it is. For a while. But then, when the number of clients is growing, you need to get up at 6 am to make sure the cakes are ready on time. Where you had lots of time to come up with a design, now you have to create somethin instantly. And when it doesn’t work, stresslevels are rising and your heart is beating fraticly. On your day off, where you would normally bake and decorate a cake to relax and enjoy the process, you are now completely exhausted. With no hobby to relax and take the pressure off. Because you exercise your hobby almost every day in your business. But it doesn’t feel like a hobby anymore.
Of course, this picture is overdone. There are multiple entrepreneurs out there, that have successfully created a business around their hobby and are enjoying it in full. But I want you to be aware of the danger of just simply taking a hobby and turning it into a business.
The energy that comes from a hobby is completely different than the energy that comes with running a business. The first one is relaxed, it is voluntary, you can quit any time and there is no need to succeed. You can paint for a hobby, make horrible paintings, but still, enjoy the process. Running a business means doing something to make money. And please, do something you love and that fills your heart. But it is different from a hobby. You need to show up. Every day. You need to succeed at it or clients and customers will not buy your stuff.
Think about all this before deciding to turn your hobby into a business. Answer the following questions in all honesty to yourself:
- Do I like this enough to do it every day?
- Do I like it enough to do it under pressure?
- Am I good enough to let it succeed as a business?
But as your hobby is something you enjoy and speaks to you, it is a good idea to have a closer look and see if you can incorporate elements in your business. If you like writing in your free time, you could decide to become a writer, but you can also decide to see if you can incorporate writing in your business. Maybe write a blog or a book. If you like to paint, maybe you can find a way to channel that creativity in your work. You can even come up with your own paintings to use on your website or as a logo.
- What exactly is it that I love so much about this hobby?
- Can I incorporate (elements of) my hobby into my business?
- Are there other ways to achieve that same feeling, that would be more suitable for me as a business opportunity?
Love your business. Make it something that is aligned with who you are. Use your talents and your skills. But know that running a business is different from having a hobby.