From Passion to Profession

Friday, February 14

By Ariana Noghreh

We all have our hobbies and some of us may be exceptional at them; some may be musical prodigies, others may be amazing painters, and some may just be exceptional at a sport like boxing. Whatever your hobby is, if you work hard and practice enough, you'll be great at it. And if you want to earn some extra cash or feel more accomplished, you can do something productive with it.

A lot of people I know who have taken up sports such as boxing or swimming decided to go a step further and earn certificates that allow them to teach others. Not only will they have an accredition, but they will also earn a lot of money on the side if they want to. Especially if there are no other jobs available. Or what if you're more "musical" than "sporty"? Well, thanks to the 21st century, social media can be your good friend. If you have a great voice or can play an instrument, you can post videos of yourself doing what you love which could even help you book actual shows. And if not that, you could even use platforms such as HitRecord and collaborate with other artists and make fun projects. You'll even earn a percentage of what that project earns because of your collaboration! If you're great at drawing or animation, you can still use social media to share your work. Whatever it may be, social media isn't the monster you think it is; getting recognized isn't as impossible as you think it is. All you need to know is how to work around the algoruthm and use it to your advantage.

You may be thinking, "Yeah, sure. All of this sounds plausible when you talk about it. But it won't exactly happen". Well, let me use myself as an example for you. I'm really good at drawing, and was always making murals for my school. I had to take a gap year before college and because of how bored I got, I decided to just download Adobe Illustrator on my phone and make a few illustrations of my friends for fun. I sent their pictures to them and the reactions I got were never what I had planned on getting. Everyone loved their drawing. So then I thought to myself, "Huh. Maybe I should just make an account and see what happens." So I did! I went onto Instagram, thought of a fun name, and created an illustration account for myself. It's been about two weeks and not only do I have strangers asking me for illustrations of them, but I even have almost 200 followers! Sure, 200 may not seem like a lot, but it is to me. Each follower counts. And I never even had high hopes for it in the first place but now I'm planning about using this little page as a side gig for the future! I even decided to collaborate with a photographer just for the fun of it. (And if you're wondering whether I was actually telling the truth about my account, just give it a look for yourself if you fancy.)

So never let your fears and self doubt stand in the way. You only "fail" when you decide what you think is failure. Someone else might think that 200 followers is terrible and that I've failed and should just give up. But I'm in it for the long run. And not only that, my initial plan was to just have fun. You can't always instantly succeed at what you do. You need to be patient and you just need to believe in yourself. If you don't, who will? So don't expect too much when you start doing what you want and take everything as a blessing because even 1 follower is better than 0. Go after what you want and it'll always work out, just might take a bit longer than it did for others.

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