As a small business owner, the best advice I can give you is to not monetize all of your hobbies. Keep some of them as fun, so your entire life doesn't become work. Trust me, it leads down a slippery slope of workaholism, which I would not recommend, no matter what Gary Vee tells you.

Some things should just stay hobbies. Reddit user Putherthere asked:

“What's good as a hobby but terrible as a profession?“

​Hobbies should be fun, and sometimes when you slap a price tag on something, it immediately becomes less so.

​Professional baking is a huge commitment.

“Baking. I love to make bread and cakes, but on my time.

I couldn't imagine having to wake up at 3 am everyday to start making bread.”


“I love to cook and bake. Friends have asked me many times why I won't do it as a profession. I firmly believe if I had to do as a job I'd end up hating it, and I never want to be in that position.”


​Valid reasons to not open a comic book store.

comic book guy GIF Giphy

“Hobbyist collecting. I've known two people who grew up loving comic books, so they opened their own comic book stores as adults.

It's not just that 90+% of comic shops tend to go under for lack of business (although that's certainly true). The other reality is that the customers are, if possible, even more demanding, opinionated, and rude than customers in other retail stores.”


Pay people their time!

Crochet and knitting. I'm constantly being told "you should have a business doing that". But nobody will be willing to pay for my time. They'd only be willing to pay for materials if I'm lucky. For example. A double bed sized blanket in a relatively simple stitch would take me 170-200 hours, basic yarn approximately £40-£60.

I'd be lucky if the customer would pay £50-£80. It's the same for a lot of "hand crafts" I was literally "jaw on the floor" the other day when I saw a "designer" crochet halter top being sold for £600!!!! I'd be super lucky if I got £15-£20!”


Not very cost-effective.

“Bowling. Unless you're good enough to be in the top ~20 in the world.

The top earner in all of 2020 made $293k from the PBA tour.

The 10th highest earner made $71k.

Only 16 made more than $50k. From there it just keep dropping to where the number 50 earner only made about $10k.

You also have to pay for each tournament you enter. If 300 bowlers show up for a tournament you need to finish roughly in the top 100 to even make your money back. It's just too hard to go all-in on. Most pro bowlers either run pro-shops or give lessons when they can.”


In theory, owning your own business doing whatever you want is great! But once you realize the amount of grind required once money is involved, you might reconsider.

It’s tougher than it looks....and it already looks tough.​

a chorus line GIF by New York City Center Giphy

“Dancing. Most dancers get paid sh*t, they break their bodies throughout their lives, and have to retire VERY young in most cases.”


“When I graduated high school I had two paths: dance audition for Disney or college admissions. I went to the audition and was cut for being too tall. I then realized I'd be chasing audition after audition for maybe ten years before I'd have to "retire" and then what? Open a studio when there's a million already. So I chose college for the long term security and just danced as a hobby and exercise.

Professions in the arts is definitely a small fish in a very large pond scenario. The few that make a living are rare and extremely lucky.”


​Music is very commercialized.

“I'm a composer and I don't really see my music doing money, and there are two reasons for that.

1: The music industry is very large and I see that a large number of artists and groups are competing for a small place on the top. Everything seems unpredictable, too many variables, too many possibilities, and I don't feel like risking my chances at it.

2: My style simply isn't mainstream.

For now, I'll just keep learning and doing it as a hobby and maybe I'll please some people one day.”


It gets old.

“Building computers.

Use to be a great hobby for me back in the day, but once you work in a place that troubleshoot and maintain them, you get tired of the constant monotony for:

Spec-ing out the layout and hardware.

Software install and updating.

Making sure connections are seated properly.


Took all the fun and wonder away.”


​Speaking of the fun and wonder going away, do you know how hard it is to be an artist? Sh*t sucks sometimes.

​Clients can be a nightmare.

walter skinner picture GIF Giphy

“Photography, sort of.

Once it becomes your job it really quickly loses a lot of its charm and the customers can be very very annoying at times (although I do admit sometimes it is freaking fantastic as well).

It does depend on the subject though, I suppose."


​Can confirm.

“Writing, for some people it works out, but most things are never popular and not usually anything enough to support yourself.”


“Even historically you can see that most writers were either rich and could live of their families wealth or have other jobs somewhat related (which for most of the time meaned the same) such as lawyers, journalists or some kind of educator.”


So true.​

“Anything directly relating to entertainment. That includes making music, movies, video games, sports, whatever.

If it's anything that tons of people have a 'passion' for because it's fun, that's going to translate into people wanting to make a living out of it, and thus the market will be very crowded and competitive.”


As a freelancer, I can 100% confirm all of this. As much as I love writing, it is so important for me to set boundaries, and create non-monetized hobbies, so I can maintain my work/life balance. This is what I would recommend to anyone who is pursuing their dream jobs--know your limits, and let yourself still have fun without worrying about making money.

Maintain that work/life balance! That's the most important thing

Photo by aisvri on Unsplash

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