I was listening to the Being Boss podcast today, and it was an interview with Chris Guillebeau and he said something that literally made me pause the sound, stop working, and just repeat it in my head over and over.
I literally had chills. I was stopped in my tracks. I finally reached for a notepad and wrote it down:
“Instead of following your passion, what if you followed a problem?”
I have had this blog for almost a year now. I have a minuscule mailing list that, frankly, I am scared to email because I don’t want to make them unsubscribe. I have one post that has had mild success from Pinterest, and that is about it.
I’ve been reading books and blogs about blogging and trying to mimic some of the things that I personally like from other’s sites. There has been something missing and I haven’t been able to figure out why I don’t like my own blog. Chris goes on to say:
“What if you think about all the problems you encounter in daily life? Things that frustrate you, things that annoy you, and things that could be done better.”
This really made me think. I originally started my blog and it turned into an extension from my full-time job and I based a few of my posts on things that were bothering me at work. This is a problem that is common for bloggers that hold 9-5 jobs. The problem with this is that I went home to blog, got excited to write, and then basically kept working my job without getting paid.
So then I over-corrected and just started talking about books I’ve read. Nothing wrong with that at all… but I don’t read as often I need to in order to be (in my mind) qualified to post about books consistently. So that lead me here. With nothing being posted at all because I didn’t know what to do.
I thought about what problems I was having in my life. What was I googling? I said to myself “If following your passion isn’t working, that doesn’t discredit your passion, you might just be trying too hard.”
Trying too hard is a regular personality trait I have had since I was in kindergarten. For example, we had to draw a picture of ourselves and in the time everyone drew theirs, I had done my front on one side of the paper and then did my back on the other side. I love that about myself but sometimes, like right now with my blog, I try too hard to make every post better than my last and all it gets me is a WordPress site full of drafts and nothing new published for weeks.
So here I am. No longer trying to be passionate. I am going to write about where I am having problems because I can’t be too different than every other millennial, right?
Here is my advice to entrepreneurs: Look at what is frustrating you in your life. What is something you need that would make your life easier? A onesie with pockets? A recipe book with food that helps your specific health issue? A website to calculate your budget? Go on and make it! If you are having a problem, I guarantee someone else is too.