515rB8D1iWL._SX327_BO1,204,203,200_In previous conversations, I may have left you with a misunderstanding.  Allow me to clear it up. If there is something that you just must do, then you do it.  However, it does not have to make money.

It may be that your art or gift or skill can be delivered in such a way that you can sell it for more than it costs, and create a profitable business doing what you love.  Or, it may turn out that your business serves to “feed the flame.”  I know a very successful plumbing contractor who loves his plumbing business.  What he loves even more is the work he does on the side.  He travels to places where people don’t have access to water and he builds wells.

Do what you love. And, figure out some way to make enough money so that you can do it. Mind you, I don’t recommend that you stick with a job you hate, or persist in a business that causes you to lose your integrity. You might aim for at least really liking what you do to make money. As long as you get to do what you really really really want.

Elizabeth Gilbert wrote the mega-best seller, Eat, Pray, Love. It was a blockbuster success, selling over 10 million copies and holding a spot on the New York Times Best Seller list for over 200 weeks. Before and after that rocking success, Liz wrote several books that were purchased by a few friends and family members. In her latest book, Big Magic, she shares her thoughts on creative living. Her must do: writing. She committed to becoming a writer. Not for a few years, to see if it pans out as a career. She committed like Serena Williams committed to tennis. And Liz doesn’t require that her writing provide her a living. Instead, she says,

I maintained alternative streams of income so that, when my inspiration wasn’t flowing, I could say to it reassuringly, “No worries, mate.  Just take your time.  I’m here whenever you’re ready.”…There is no dishonor in having a job.  What is dishonorable is scaring away your creativity by demanding that it pay for your entire existence.  

Do what you really want to do. What you must do. And figure out the money.

BTW, a really cool thing could happen. When you embrace your creativity with no expectations, you may just be free enough to deliver something so wonderful or amazing or useful or interesting that people will pay you a lot of money for it. It worked out like that for Liz. Just sayin.

xo$ Ellen

PS…For me, business is what I must do. I love it. It is my creative medium of choice. I just love starting, fixing and growing businesses. I appreciate a great sale. Ding ding ding! Turn around a cranky customer and I get goosebumps. A current and accurate financial report can be downright sexy.