When you have something you’re truly passionate and excited about it your life – what can be better than turning it into your career?
Because when you’re working with something you really love, it can be one of the most creative, inspiring and rewarding things you could ever do!
That’s exactly what it’s been like ever since I started cooperating with Modanisa – a Turkish fashion company dedicated to sharing the latest contemporary style trends for Muslim women, with a modest perspective.
I love the hijab – and I’ve also been passionate about fashion ever since I got my first allowance, and could splurge on my favourite new styles. So it really was a dream come true to create a site where women like me could find fabulous, contemporary fashion that is both modest and stylish.
So how can you turn your passion into your profession? Read on to find out!
Step 1: Identify your passion
Knowing that your passionate about something isn’t quite enough to help get you started on turning into a profession.
First – you need to identify what it is that you love clearly. This will in turn help you to pinpoint the particular niche or area to target, and find others who are just as passionate about it as you.
For me, I was always passionate about fashion. It was more than simply choosing a new outfit, or changing my look – fashion could give me the ability to transform the way I felt. I could boost my confidence, lift my mood, or feel relaxed and happy – all through what I wore.
And as a Muslim, the clothes that you wear have a profound importance in our lives. They don’t simply serve a practical function – your clothes are a part of the way you express your religion. By dressing modestly and not revealing our body, we can express respect, faith and obedience to God.
But I didn’t want to lose all the creativity of self-expression I enjoyed with my clothing – and that’s why I became a professional hijabista at Modanisa – to help other hijabis enjoy the ability to express themselves and feel more confident about their Muslima wear, while still retaining the full expression of their faith.
To do this, ask yourself how your passion has changed your life. Your passion can be related to anything – art, photography, fashion, food, technology… the options are limitless!
The most important things to consider are:
- How has your passion made a positive impact on you?
- Did it change the way you lived your life, or help solve a problem you faced?
Answering these questions will give you the key to identifying the quality that others will also be looking for in a product or service, and help you begin to target your passion towards the right niche.
Step 2: Become the expert
When you’re truly passionate about something, you’ll want to learn as much as possible – and get your hands on everything related to it! Because in order to turn it into a profession, keeping it at the ‘hobby’ level isn’t good enough – you need to be the absolute expert.
For example, as a huge fashion lover, I’m always educating myself on the latest hijab trends, so that I can help my customers stay as stylish as possible. But being the expert doesn’t mean knowing all there is to know on the subject. I’m always surprised and astounded by how new trends can emerge, or how something I’d never thought would work can be made to look amazing by the right designer!
What being an expert will do for you however, is give you the tools and knowledge to take your passion to the next level. You won’t simply handpick the aspects of it that are fun and enjoyable – you will also be able to understand how it works, and how you can share it with others in a way that will help you succeed.
For me, learning about the technical aspect of fashion has been incredibly valuable. Sure – looking at fabrics and different styles of cuts might not be quite as exciting as admiring beautiful editorial shots – but it helps me to understand how I can create the right kind of clothing that my customers will love. By understanding how to choose the right fabric for your abaya or make the cut that will be both flattering and modest, I can take my passion further.
Always work on improving your skills and knowledge related to your passion, by reading and researching regularly. By learning as much as you can, you’ll be able to apply your knowledge to refine your product.
Why is seeking knowledge held so highly in Islam? It’s because gaining and sharing knowledge can be really beneficial – both to ourselves, and to others. By learning more about something, we may be able to avoid things that are harmful as we understand more about them. But we can also help others to benefit too – by using our knowledge to create greater understanding and awareness, or make other people’s lives easier, more enjoyable and safer for them.
So don’t be afraid to reach out for help or knowledge. Take courses, or work with a coach or mentor to help you get to the level you need to be at.
Step 3: Start with a plan
Once you have established the foundations of your passion, you now need to start putting it into action. It’s not enough to simply hope and pray that your ambitions succeed – in order to get their, you have to put in the extra effort yourself!
There’s a well-known hadith that sums this up perfectly – stating that you should “trust in God, but also tie up your camel.” What does that mean? It implies that while it’s important to have faith and trust in God, you should also take practical steps towards your goals and plans.
If you want to succeed at something, you’ll need to “tie your camel” by doing the research about how you might be able to make it happen.
Doing research, you may find that you have to study for additional qualifications first, or get experience in relevant areas. All of these things take time and consideration – you might want to look at the best places to study that are most relevant for you, or think about how to gain experience that will help you get to where you want to be. Shadowing other professionals or interning, for instance, can be a great way to learn more about an industry and will help you create a more detailed outline about what you need to do yourself.
Step 4: Start today!
Turning your passion into your profession is definitely exciting – and it can also be a little nerve-wracking.
When you’re stepping into a brand new field there are a lot of uncertainties out there. But don’t let that intimidate you.
Don’t wait until you “feel ready” before you make the first move. Start today – even if it is just a small step.
Remember that turning your passion into your profession will take a lot of hard work and dedication, but by working at it with patience and dedication, you’re sure to succeed.
Step 5: Celebrate every success
Sometimes making your passion your profession can feel like a tough journey – but it’s also important to remind yourself along the way why you love it so much.
When you’re working hard towards a goal that you are passionate about, doubts and uncertainties will definitely try to sneak their way in. You may find yourself seeing the success of others – and feeling like it’s impossible to achieve yourself. Others might try to put you down or discourage you. You might experience several setbacks, disappointments and failures along the way – and it can feel really hard to pick yourself up again.
So how can you keep yourself motivated about your goals?
One important thing to do is to treat yourself to some time where you can truly enjoy your passion for what it is – without the pressures of turning it into “work”. This will help you to recharge your creative spirit – and avoid burning out. If you’re passionate about something artistic for instance, then you might want to enjoy some time to simply play and create for the pleasure of it, reminding yourself about why you fell in love with it in the first place.
The same can go for other activities too. Read a book or watch a film about the issue you’re passionate about. I try to watch some fashion news every night, to keep abreast of new elegant evening dresses! Doing so helps me refresh my feelings, and remind myself about why I want to do what I do in the first place.
Finally, make sure that you celebrate every success on the journey – however big or small! After all your hard work, you definitely deserve it.
Following your passions and doing something you truly enjoy and care about can help you to enjoy a happier and more rewarding life. There’s a fantastic proverb worth remembering: “choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life.” Because when you’re busy working on something you enjoy, it doesn’t really feel like work at all!
For me, being able to spend every day thinking and working about modest muslim clothing for women feels like a dream come true – I can’t quite believe that I get to do something I love so much for a living! And I hope that by reading this article, I can help you to achieve the same feeling in your own life.
What are you passionate about and how would you like to turn it into a profession? Share your dreams and ideas with us – we’d love to know what your goals are!
About the Author
Sarah is keen on trendy, yet modest Islamic clothing for women. Ever since she managed to turn her passion into profession, she’s been a proud stylist and fashion consultant at Modanisa. You can contact her on Twitter.