A job and a hobby are often thought of as two completely different entities. A job is something you do to bring bread to the table; more than often, the work you do is motivated purely by a pay check, and there are probably a thousand other things you rather be doing other than working. A hobby, on the other hand, is an activity you genuinely take an interest in and likely something you would even pay to do.
What if you can combine the best of both worlds and make a living doing what you would otherwise be more than happy to do for free? While this is nothing more than wishful thinking for most people, there are real-life stories of average people who successfully turned a hobby into a lucrative business.
Get Paid to Do What You Love
What is it that you do on your downtime? Do you make a trip to the golf course, play video games, play a musical instrument, tinker with your car or don an apron and experiment with the latest culinary recipes? On the surface, there doesn’t appear to be money to be made with these pastimes. However, just about any niche can be turned into a business if you can offer something that other people are willing to pay for.
Ways to Monetize Your Hobby
Teach Your Hobby: Whatever your interest is, there are others who enjoy doing the same thing and many more who are just getting into it for the first time. For those newbies, it would be much more beneficial to learn from an instructor than through a book or online tutorial. There are various formats in which you can impart your knowledge to others. Perhaps you can lead your own class in an academic institution, at a trade school, through a series of online tele-seminars or as a private tutor.
Sell/Import/Invent a Product Related to Your Hobby: There is always a physical product that is in demand with every hobby. If you love animals, for instance, then perhaps you can concoct your own organic pet food recipe and either sell the food or include it in a pet food cookbook that you write, publish and release for sale. It also helps to think outside the box and be willing to spend a little money of your own. If you are a baseball nut, for example, look for inexpensive and little known ways to acquire game tickets, especially tickets to high profile games. Just imagine what another baseball fanatic like yourself is willing to pay for a World Series ticket.
Repair or Modify What You Love: Every niche needs a “fix it guy”. Professions like automotive and IT repair are quite common, but there are other speciality areas that are less commonplace. If you are a gun enthusiast, for example, then maybe you can start your own firearm repair business or specialize in custom engraving or firing mechanism modification.
Gain Additional Expertise
You likely already have some level of experience related to your hobby, either from being self-taught or through informal lessons from a friend or relative. However, it never hurts to gain additional skills and knowledge through a vocational school. In some fields and depending on where you live, certification may be required in order to start your own business and market yourself as a certified professional.
The average working person spends 30 to 40 years in the workforce before hanging up their hat; that is 60,000 to 80,000 hours for someone who works full-time. However, if you truly love what you are doing, then it can hardly be considered work.