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How to Make Money from Your Passion & Have Fun

How to Make Money from Your Passion & Have Fun

We're taking a look at some lessons learned from when I was starting this website. In this compilation article, you'll go through my thoughts on how to discover and develop your passion how to choose a career based on money and lifestyle factors, and some top tips for getting started as an original content creator.


How do you know what to focus your time on if you have so many different passions?

I always tend to really focus on one at a point in time and then you figure out if that's going to be the one. So I've had a lot of moments in my life where in the beginning it was basketball. I was obsessed with playing basketball. Basketball was my entire life. I thought I was gonna go into the WNBA then 3 or 4 years later. Okay, wait. I don't think this is it. And it's just a lot of trial and error. Go full-on with what you're stoked about now because it's a great thing if you found a passion

The harder thing is to be aimlessly wandering around the world and nothing lighting a fire underneath your butt. That is the actual problem. So if you have things that you like if you have too many things that's great like go and do all of those things really focus on one. If it turns out it's not working out then go to the next thing. If you're in the fortunate position where you've got multiple things that you're passionate about but you're not really sure which one to go for.

But if you're sitting there and thinking well I don't really have any passions apart from video games and anime or whatever that I would suggest you're probably not doing enough exploration. And that's something that's talked about in the book Grit by Angela Duckworth. She talks about why passion and resilience are the secrets to success. And there's a great quote which is that passion for your work is a little bit discovery followed by a lot of development and then a lifetime of deepening.

And so if you haven't yet found the thing or things that you're passionate about then I would suggest tentatively that it's all about doing a bit of exploration stepping outside the comfort zone and then eventually you'll find something that you just want to throw yourself into.


How do you think about that kind of balance between doing what makes money vs kind of doing what you enjoy and ideally kind of the dream is where you're doing the same thing and it gives you both?

That is probably the hardest thing. And then the second hardest question is do you actually want to pursue that as your job your passion? I know a lot of people whose happiness is coming home at 6:00 p.m, break and open a beer, playing Netflix and that's their evening and they love it. 

And then maybe they don't 100% love their job but they have some friends that work and just life is good. And there's that separation and they like that and they have their weekends. If you want to keep that life kind of compartmentalized then there's nothing wrong with finding a 9 to 5. Again I think it comes down to your personality type what you enjoy and how you do things.

I am a very full-on person being able to be free to do whatever I want even though I work every Saturday and Sunday and this doesn't end at 6:00 p.m. I get a lot of joy from it and I really love building. But if I had to go to an office and just deal with BS I think I would die inside. I think it was the ancient Greeks or someone who had that phrase know thyself which is like the most important thing. On the outside living the dream. YouTuber, full-time living in New York. Tech products to review. Flying around the world to make videos and Vlogs and stuff that sort of lifestyle is isn't really for everyone.

But I think a lot of us talk ourselves out of doing something like starting a YouTube channel or a podcast or a blog and thinking I don't really want to be a full-time YouTuber. It's kind of like going to the gym and exercising. You don't have to compete in bodybuilding competitions to get some benefits out of exercising equally. You don't have to be a full-time YouTuber to get the benefits of sharing your work out there and building an audience.


Tips for getting started on YouTube

But I think the general advice applies to getting started with anything and not just YouTube. It seems like every year where even if you were starting Youtube 2016. I guess even at the time it would have seemed like YouTube is too saturated?

Now is always a perfect time to start. If you really want if you have something that is driving you that you want to create and you know it's such a passion of yours to where it's almost an extension of you to where if you're not creating then a small piece of you will die inside. It's always the right time. If you have that itch like you got to scratch. You really have to start with what are you good at?

I had a passion for video. I was obsessed with video editing. I wasn't going to go blogging and Tumbler. The reason why YouTubers current YouTubers hate YouTube is the reason why new YouTubers can come on the spot and still be successful. That is the algorithm. When you get a certain audience you do feel like you're kind of a product of the algorithm. You have to cater to it you know it needs.

But that same reason is why new YouTubers can come on the spot. Maybe only making videos for a few months have one that really pops off and all of a sudden you have momentum. It's all about having a platform with an algorithm actually help people who start out with nothing.

Case in point there is this new YouTuber who is a junior doctor in London and her name's Honey and she's started making videos on YouTube a month ago. And she's made 5 videos. And the fifth one of those videos really popped because it was an important subject that she was educating people about. And she's already got 3,000 subscribers in just a month of making YouTube videos.

I was looking through my analytics and it took me a whole year of making 2 or 3 videos a week to get to subscribers. It just goes to show that if you start today even in the very saturated market that is YouTube and you're creating stuff that's valuable to people and that people are finding useful then it can completely change your life. Our next point is something that I used to worry about a lot and that is the idea of originality and creativity.


What does creativity kind of mean to you? And to what extent are you like an original thinker vs a sort of remixer of other people's stuff?

I think the Internet is a remix culture. I mean look at the early days of Tumbler. Who is it in our sphere that says that there's no such thing as an original thought? I think with me even I hopped on the Vlogging bandwagon once I discovered and I didn't create that. And even Casey didn't create. That why Casey got so big. Was he took something that was really popular Vlogging but put his own spin on it making it really beautiful B roll to music, that's exciting. It was really those tweaks that I think create new genres. It's what you make of all of these things that you're into and putting your own spin on it.

So I used to really worry about this originality stuff. I used to really worry that I feel like none of the stuff that I put out on YouTube or my blog or em on these Let or anything. I feel like none of it is actually original. All I'm doing is taking insights from other people and packaging them up in the form of these videos. And then I made these videos about how to study for exams. And then after making the video I realized that Oh crap.

Thomas Frank made the identical video 3 years ago and it's got like 5 views in it. Why did I feel the need to take the video? But there's a quote that I always come back to whenever I think that way which is that there are no unique messages only unique messengers. Internet is a remix culture. Like nothing is original.

Everything is just a remix of something else. And so if you're thinking of getting started with something like a YouTube channel or blog or podcast or anything and you're being held back by this idea that well people have already done it. I don't want to do a review of Tech because MKBHD has already done that. Don't worry about it. There's no sort of thing as originality. Everything is a remix.

The fact that you're creating something means it's gonna be unique because in theory, you are the only you out there. That's something I still struggle with and it's something I always have to keep reminding myself of.


How do you think about your sort of personal brand?

I think design is Super helpful when it comes and solve a problem. So Scheherazade started out of a need of Oh my gosh people don't know how to pronounce my name. I think that's the most important thing for a brand is do people know how to spell it? Do people know how to say it? So if someone can at least remember how to say it and then they can associate Scheh or something with it then I can do the back-end work of the SEO stuff. And if you can Google Scheherazade you'll find my channel.

You'll find all my socials when no one interfaces through really these anymore. But maybe everything is voice and people are going to need to know how to say Scheherazade if they're going to find my podcast. I think that's just like for Start is the most important thing. And then if you can associate something like fun and Sight Geist like the Peach emoji then bonus points.

Again this branding stuff is something that I used to worry about at the start of my channel. If I meet people and they're like oh what's your YouTube channel? It was really hard to make that decision to go with my real name but I'm really glad I went with my real name. I think if you use your real name then it is something that will stay with you for the rest of your life in theory.

And so your content can always evolve with you. Whereas if someone like Peter McKinnon what to call himself Photo, video tutorials guy suddenly he is like very very much typecast into that role. And so when it comes to personal branding if you can figure out a way to make your real name the brand then that has much more future potential than sticking to a brand name.

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