This is a guest post by Jamie Flexman.
I’m the sort of person that tends to bang on about how to quit your job, if it’s dragging you down, and to focus on what you truly want to do with your life.
It’s kinda my thing.
The trouble is, and this is something that I don’t mention often enough; doing what you want is damn hard work!
You think waking up every day and forcing yourself to go to a job you hate is difficult, then you should try following your passion for a change. It’s counter-intuitive but this is when the hard work really begins.
This is what it’s all about.
It HAS to be hard because if it wasn’t, it wouldn’t be worth doing.
This doesn’t mean that it isn’t fun or rewarding. People mistake hard work for grind and toil but that is only because they have been conditioned to think this way.
Nobody WANTS to spend 40 hours a week in the office. It’s just one of those things society shoves us into.
Following your passion and spending your days doing what you love is both hard AND enjoyable. It is hard because you have to be excellent at your passion in order to make a living at it.
Life doesn’t reward the weak and the lazy. It rewards those who treat their passion like a full-time job.
You Are What You Do – Be Excellent
There is a reason why fish are so good at swimming, why birds can fly better than any plane and why that guy from Man Vs. Food can complete so many of those crazy eating challenges.
It’s simply because that is what they spend most of their time doing. If you do something every single day, then you cannot fail to become proficient at it.
Let’s say you spend 8 hours a day playing the guitar; it will literally be impossible for you to suck at it if you’re putting that much time and effort into practicing (assuming you practice it correctly).
Yes okay, practicing your passion for 8 hours a day may seem a little extreme to you right now, especially if you have never dedicated a lot of time to a particular activity in this way, but to become really great at something, you have to put forth a radical amount of effort.
Excellence is not for part-timers.
Every single one of you reading this actually has experience in this area. You can speak your native language better than any linguist, polyglot or immigrant to your country. Yes, you can become fluent in a language in as little as 18 months with enough dedication, but it’s almost impossible to truly master it and sound like a native unless you’ve been living and experiencing this language every day from a young age.
Now think about what it is you really want to do with your life. When you’re at work bored out of your mind, what is it that you constantly wish you were doing instead?
THAT is what you should be doing; every day.
Now I’m not saying you should immediately quit your job to join the circus and become the world’s best clown juggler. You have bills to pay, you have people to take care of. I get that.
The thing is, you don’t have to quit today to start building toward your goal.
I’m willing to bet you waste a lot of time watching TV or aimlessly browsing the internet or wasting time in some other way.
Maybe you spend too much time reading blog posts <grin>. Thank you by the way; you’re awesome.
My point is that you could easily free up a few hours a day to work on your craft if you really wanted to become excellent at it. Maybe wake up an hour earlier each day and go to bed an hour later. That’s 2 hours right there.
Give up watching TV and only using the internet when you actually have something important to do. That’s another 2 hours.
You’re up to 4 hours a day now, and counting weekends, you could easily add another 2 hours on top. You now have well over 30 hours of “spare time” to practice what you truly love.
How could you not become excellent?
The Secret to Mastering Your Craft
This is what success takes. It’s very easy to view those in lofty positions and think that they have something that most of us do not.
It’s called an insane work ethic and a refusal to accept anything less than excellence.
These people weren’t born with any superhuman powers or into circumstances that handed them success on a plate. They found time in their schedule and they didn’t allow whatever pathetic excuses their brains tried to come up with to derail them from their destination.
They wanted it and they NEEDED to have it.
Your passion has to become an obsession. A change as big as striking out on your own cannot be made without a truly intrinsic desire to want to succeed. If you have yet to find that urge, then it’s okay. You probably haven’t found your true calling yet, but you will, and when you do, you need to be prepared to accept the challenge.
J.K. Rowling wrote the first Harry Potter book in an Edinburgh cafe while her daughter was at school.
Award winning writer Geoff Thompson wrote his first book during toilet breaks at his job as a factory sweeper.
Jimi Hendrix used to take his guitar everywhere he went and would practice whilst eating and again during toilet visits.
I’m sensing a theme here…
Anyway, all I’m saying is that where there is a will, there is a way. Find that spare time and make it count. Those hours will add up and by the end of the week you will be surprised to learn how much time you have actually spent honing your skills.
There are 168 hours in the week. I have shown you how you can find at least 30 hours a week to become excellent at your passion.
Treat your passion like a full-time job and one day that’s exactly what it will be.
About the Author
Jamie Flexman truly hated the 9-5 lifestyle and decided to give it all up to start teaching guitar and become a freelance writer. He blogs about how to quit your job, find your passion and to live life on your own terms at www.Psycholocrazy.com.