When you love what you do, you’ll never work a day in your life.
If there is one thing I could recommend to someone who wants to change their life or become an entrepreneur, it would be to find something you’re passionate about and turn it into a product or service. Design this product or service in a way you would want it, then, once you’re happy with it — test the market and see how it reacts. You can learn so much about your idea once you make it and share it. You’ll never know what it could be if you don’t. If you have an itch for something, scratch it. If not, no worries — I’ve put together a challenge to extract it from your brain.
Scratch your own itch
“If you’re into kite-surfing and you want to become an entrepreneur, do it with kite-surfing.”
— Sir Richard Brandson
A high school coach wanted to make a lighter shoe for his track team. So he went in his workshop, poured liquid rubber in the family waffle maker and made a lighter shoe. Nike was born. Now it’s the best selling running shoe worldwide. (Bill Bowerman)
A kid that loved playing with iPhones wanted to create an app. He begged his parents to get the $100 Apple iPhone developer kit (to code iPhone apps) and coded all night. He now has two apps launched and works for a tech company in NYC, the best part — he is only 12 years old. Watch this amazing Ted video. (Thomas Suarez)
An unemployed factory worker who was passionate about cars, wanted a sports car that made him happy. While building “the people’s car” (Volkswagen Beetle) for Hitler, he slowly developed his dream car. Porsche was born. (Ferdinand Porsche)
A man wanted to share his favorite salad dressing with more than his family and friends. He got to work by making large batches of his dressing in a bathtub in the basement. Newman’s Own was born. They’ve also donated over $330 million to charities. (Paul Newman)
A college dropout who was addicted to technology, envisioned a personal computer in every household. So he went to work in his mom’s garage and started a computer company. Apple was born. (Steve Jobs)
All of these influential leaders had one thing in common, a passion.
How do you want to be remembered?
Take a moment and imagine your funeral, your obituary, the stories shared by your family and friends. What legacy do you want to leave behind? Knowing that you are going to die is the biggest motivator of all. It will happen, it’s the inevitable. It’s up to you make sure it you’re working on what matters most right now.
One day, I sat down with a piece of paper and filled it with a bunch of ideas that I wanted to try. I started waking up around 5am, when everyone else is sleeping, to work on the list. I also had a running note on my iPhone so I could jot down ideas as they came. TIP: Give each idea a creative title name, date, and description. It helps to challenge you if you haven’t had a new ideas lately.
I put it in my head that I was going to throw everything at the wall and see what sticks. I wanted to launch a product every month for 6 months. I made a list, drank some wine, fired it off to family and friends (via email), and drank some wine. Then I got to work.
I didn’t make everything on the list (for now :), but for the first time in my life I was truly passionate about something. And to me, it was the process of creating things, becoming obsessed with a topic, and sharing it with friends and family. I developed several itches I wanted to scratch.
One day, 9 months in to that year, I noticed that something started to stick. I then did the scariest thing I’ve done in my life — I called my boss and quit my day job. I don’t recommend this, but I knew that in order for it to work, I had to devote all my time and energy to it.
Here’s the resignation letter — Luckily the company was extremely supportive and I transitioned into a contract agreement with them. Now, it’s still too early to know if this will even work, but I can tell you this: I am the happiest I’ve ever been in my life and I won’t have any regrets, I’ve already learned so much.
Challenge: Find your passion in 7 days with 3 steps
The challenge is very simple: Dream Big, Experiment, Breathe, Repeat. You’ll know when there’s something.
For the next week, ask yourself the following questions every morning right when you wake up. I put them together so you can print them out and tape it to your bathroom mirror if you like. Click here to download the PDF.
- What do I like to do?
It could be something you like or want to try. What about when you where a kid?
What books, magazines, tv shows, podcasts interest you?
- How can I become an expert in this?
What are the top three books in your subject?
Who do you know (or get to know) in the industry?
- How can I experiment this idea?
Have a party — invite friends and family over to test your product or service
Try to sell it online (ebay/estsy/craigslist), or in-person (local fair/farmer’s market)?
Don’t ever give up.
This is your life. Do what you want and do it often. The world is whatever you make of it. You must love what you are doing.