“Passion changes everything” 

It takes a lot of courage to leave a career to follow your passion, especially if you have a secure, well-paying position. To accomplish this goal successfully, you need to develop a sound plan. By following a few practical steps, you can follow your passion into a rewarding and fruitful career.

1   Research Your Passion

Take time to research the field you are passionate about. For example, if you are passionate about the environment, research job openings and career opportunities in the green industry. Go to industry events to network with people who work in the field, and connect with professionals through social media sites. Ask them for information about career and training opportunities. Contact managers of companies that serve the industry to see if they can meet for an informational interview. Find out what types of jobs are available, how they match up with your skill set, and what it takes to be successful in the field.

2  Education and Training

To transition into a new role, you will need to determine what, if any, special training or education you will need. Determine the best way to broaden your skills and knowledge while still holding on to your current job. If you need to pursue a new degree, it might involve taking night, weekend and online classes for an extended period of time. On the other hand, if you just need to get a particular certification or license, you might be able to prepare for the exams in a matter of a few weeks. You should also consider volunteering in the field you are passionate about during your off hours to gain experience.

3    Try Part-Time

Working part-time in a field you are passionate about gives you a chance to test the waters without sacrificing the job you already have. Find out if you can work with a company as a volunteer or part-time until you are confident that transitioning into a full-time job is something you are absolutely confident about. For example, if your passion is cooking and you always dreamed of becoming a chef, you might be able to take culinary classes one night a week while working part-time as a restaurant cook a couple of other nights or on weekends.

4   Try Before Buying

If your passion is to be your own boss, plan carefully. Before you start your own business, try working for a similar business in a field that is similar to or aligned with your passion. This can provide you with valuable experience you might need to start your own business. Try to save up the first four to six months of expenses before starting your own business. Keep in mind that with every new opportunity comes risk. When you are financially ready to take an acceptable level of risk, you won’t be as distracted by money worries.

“The Best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now”