Do you have dreams of pursuing your passion, but find it nearly impossible due to the amount of time you have to put aside for work every week? If so, you’re not alone. Virtually everyone has dreams of doing something that brings them unfiltered joy and passion. Some people want to raise horses, others dream of starting their own business, and some wish they had enough free time to read more books. 

Whatever you’re passionate about, there’s a good chance that challenges are preventing you from chasing your passion with the intensity you felt before you started working 50 hours a week. Problems differ from person to person, but our goal is to provide you with some general tips you can start using today to pursue the things that make you happy while working a full-time job. 

Take Notes on Your Phone 

Working a full-time job doesn’t mean you have to immediately eliminate all thoughts of your passion while you’re on the clock. If you come up with a good question, premise, or thought, make sure to take notes in your phone on your lunch break so you can follow through with your ideas after you’ve made it home. 

Globally, 3.7 billion people have access to mobile devices, while the number of people using the internet is roughly 4.33 billion people. Couple that statistic with the fact that most people spend at least three hours a day on their phone, and it’s no surprise that there is ample opportunity to take notes. Your smartphone or laptop are excellent resources for jotting down quick ideas for you to review. 

For example, if you’re interested in opening a horse farm, you might want to write down questions new farmers might ask. Let’s say you’re on the clock, and suddenly you wonder what the average cost is for a young colt. If you write down these ideas throughout the day and follow up, you’re working towards learning about your passion while holding down a full-time job. 

Mentally Clock Out 

Research from Gallup shows that eight out of ten Americans suffer from stress. The most common causes of stress are financial, family, and work. When it comes to work, many people have trouble mentally clocking out for the day, which results in more stress and less time for pursuing what you love. 

There are a few signs of not leaving work after you hit the metaphorical (or literal) timeclock. Some common symptoms of work-related stress include: 

  • Habitually checking your email or chat channel for new work updates, even though you’re at home. 
  • The need to instinctively pick up your phone when you hear it go off, just in case it’s your office. 
  • Chest or head pressure or tension before each workday. People who stress at work typically feel anxiety before clocking in. 
  • You’re spending less time with your family or pursuing your interests. 

The solution to this problem is easier said than done, but sometimes you have to learn to let it go. Your office and everyone inside will be fine until morning. There’s no reason to rob yourself, or your family, of time together to do something you all love. 

Organize Your Schedule 

Another massive problem that goes hand in hand with work-related stress is disorganization. If you don’t know what you’re going to do for the day, you might find yourself overanalyzing and spending much more time on a project than you intended. 

There are several ways you can reconfigure your schedule to allow for more free time to go after your passion. First, we recommend looking through your daily tasks and figuring out where you can automate and delegate. For instance, you can automate things like survey and poll results, customer satisfaction scores, and more into simplified reports throughout the day. This small change could give you the flexibility you need to finish your work by the end of the day. 

Once you’ve automated and delegated, it’s time to organize the tasks you have left to complete. Personally, we like planning out our schedules quarterly, but you should use what works best for you. Plan out your calendar and make sure you spend no more than eight hours at work unless necessary. 

Don’t Feel Guilty

Finally, avoid feeling guilty. You’re entitled to do the things that you love in life, even if you have a full-time career. Finding a personal and professional balance is a tricky task at first, but it’s manageable. You have to step back and take a look at your life so you can figure out where you can make more room to pursue your passion.