Growing up as a millennial in the early 2000s came with a lot of messaging around "you need to go to university and get a good job."

As kids, we were told we could “do anything we wanted to do,” but as we got older… that became less true.

Most people initially start out trying to turn what they love into a job. They might start out their university career going after those big “unrealistic” dreams. But time and time again we see students end up switching their majors and going after something more “practical.”

They graduate ready to make big money so they can have that ideal version of life we’re told we have to want – Get married, buy a house, have kids.

We end up at our 10 or 20 year reunions surrounded by people we remember wanting to be astronauts, marine biologists and business owners who are now mortgage brokers, accountants or work for the government complaining about their back pain and lack of sleep (#life, am I right?).

What is often funny, is many of us end up cycling back to our initial dreams.

The dreams that were acceptable as children but were considered “unrealistic” when we grew up.

The ones we never really let go of while we worked our boring corporate jobs or the jobs we ended up choosing because they were acceptable enough for society and considered a job where you could make good money.

This was me.

I grew up loving to write. I created stories in my head and told them to my stuffies and I created many “story books” once I learned to write. I kept journals, I read until my eyes felt like they’d drop right out of my head.

I took English Honours and AP English in school and did well (I didn’t excel but that was because later I found out I had neurological deficits that made my time reading and writing extremely difficult and it’s a miracle I can read at all).

But I always thought becoming a writer was a pipe dream and if I couldn’t get an A+ in Advanced Placement English Literature then how would I ever make it in the real world trying to get my work published… Remembering, I was in high school before online business was really a known thing and the job that I currently do didn’t exist in the context that I’m doing it.

So I decided to put that dream aside and consider it “just a passion” and go to school for law (which I seemed to have a knack for… The knowledge side anyway).

But when I was at university I ended up not getting the GPA I needed after my first semester and year and realized I didn’t really want to be a lawyer.

I switched majors more times than I could count (it’s a good thing you don’t declare until third year!).

I ended up with Psychology focusing in Child Development and Disabilities and when I left I immediately was welcomed into the Autism world as a Behaviour Interventionist. I loved that job but there was always something that felt off.

After a while I realized I didn’t like the politics or the values these companies held and I simply wasn’t making a steady enough income (which is funny because a steady income was what so many people said was the reason I should stay).

When I left I went into the world of virtual assisting (a field that was not an option when I graduated high school). I loved the freedom and flexibility but I didn’t love having to do my own taxes (anybody else?). I loved that I was still in the area of serving others which is what drew me to behaviour intervention initially.

But I just could never settle.

I went through so many different offerings and services, I changed my name and Instagram bio repeatedly. I even dabbled in the online coaching world which I thought I would love but really really didn’t.

2021 and 2022 were extremely hard years. My income tanked, and I used all of my savings and the money I had saved for taxes just to stay afloat. I once again had people telling me to “go get a real job.”

Finally, in 2022 I ended up giving in and deciding to try copywriting and editing and it felt like I was home.

Once I declared myself a copywriter and editor that’s when the business just plowed back in. I had always thought that people wanted a general VA but when that was my offer my business took a huge hit but when I specialized and was true to my childhood dreams, of being a writer, that’s when the world responded.

It came full circle.

I had always only known one way to be a writer, to become an author. But once I entered the online business world I found other options.

Once I started getting paid to write blogs, e-books, websites, sales pages and edit content and even books I realized I finally turned my passions into my career and my business was going in the direction I had always wanted it to.

So, how can you do this? How can you let go of society’s idea of a worthy career and instead turn your dreams and passions into one?

It sounds cliqué but the first step is to believe that you can.

If you go around wanting to do it but truly believe that you can’t make money with a passion then you won’t be able to. It’s as simple as that.

So, you need to work on your belief. The belief that it’s possible and the belief that YOU can do it.

Once you have that then you need to start thinking outside the box. In my head, being a writer meant one thing. I had to look around and explore to discover that there were many different ways to become a writer and I found one where I could really live my passion in an accessible way.

If you love cooking and always wanted to go to culinary school (as Meagan did) look at different options for how to include cooking as part of your career. In Meagan’s case, she did courses in nutrition and included recipes and food advice as part of her memberships.

There is always more than one way to do something.

Finally, make a plan of action for how to get there. So maybe you didn’t go get your PhD in Psychology and become a psychologist. Maybe you have a degree in Psychology or you’ve even just read a lot on the various subjects. How can you get started now?

Maybe you have other skills and you could be an assistant to a Psychologist to start getting more ingrained in the subject and you can save up to continuously increase your experience and education.

There is more than one way to satisfy your craving and passion for certain things. It’s not always the most obvious choice.