Ever since Ninja, the widely successful gamer known for playing Fortnite, blew up and became a millionaire, it seems like every gamer has tested the waters of streaming, including me. When I first thought about streaming, I figured what do I have to lose. I already like playing video games so why not try to make some money out of it?
I’m sure that’s what many other people thought too when they decided to stream. Some people have gone to find huge success or at least able to make streaming a side gig. Most people like me just spent money to stream occasionally. I know a streamer who spent up to 8k on their streaming equipment and, to me, are wasting their time. The stream does have success. They have $35,000 followers on Mixer, but they still have a fulltime job. They could have put that 8k in the stock market and possibly quit their job if they bought and sold accurately.
When my wife asked me what I want to do after the Army I told her I want to make as much money as I’m making now and a job that allows me to spend time on my hobbies. But making my hobbies into a full-time job is nice to think about, but after analyzing what it would take to do my hobbies for a living, I rather stick to a white-collar job and just gradually work on my passions.
I mean of course I don’t mind making money from my passions, but I’m not going to have one of those “rags to riches” stories where I quit my job and jump into the pursuit of my passion. Here are the reasons why.
Yeah, I enjoy playing video games. But being a streamer isn’t for me because I’ll have to sacrifice time from my more important passions just to become successful in gaming. To become a successful streamer, it takes months to possibly years of consistent streaming for at least 3 to 5 hours on 3 to 5 days a week. You can’t just stream what you want either. If you want to become popular you must play games that are entertainable. Technically, the entertainment is based on the streamer more than the game itself, but nobody can be all that entertaining when playing a video game unless they have an alter streaming personality like Dr. Disrespectful.
Another passion of mine is photography. Most photographers do it as a side job unless they’re in a Journalism position. Luckily, there are plenty of jobs where photography is integrated, but it is difficult to be able to make photography a career as a freelancer. I know photographers who charge at least $1,000 for their services and they still have a full-time job. The thing about photography is that you can have amazing skills, but you must live in a city where photography is a constant demand. I like photography but I like taking pictures of what I want when I want to. If I tried making photography a full time job then I see myself getting burnt out by trying to make enough gigs to pay the rent, and photography will end up just being another stressful job than a joyful activity I do in my free time.
My main passion is writing. And if I had to make any passion into a full-time career it would be writing. I often think how cool it would be to be a full-time novelist. But I don’t want to focus on trying to become a full-time writer.
If I worry about every story I write becoming a NYTimes best-seller then I would ruin my passion each time it falls short of it and end up believing that I’m not that great of a writer. J.K. Rowling, George R. R. Martin, and Stephenie Meyer did not think about trying to become a NYTimes best-seller when they wrote their novels that made them super rich and famous. Meyer’s Twilight stories came to her in a dream, and her sister persuaded her to send the manuscript to publishers. J.K. Rowling was riding on the bus when Harry Potter came to mind. I’m sure most writers who write books think about the possibility of becoming rich and famous from their stories, but I’m not going to sit and think how can I write a story that’ll make me rich and famous.
The Hollisters definitely didn’t do that for me. I’m going to focus on writing stories that I find interesting and want to read. If I don’t want to read it then I can’t expect anyone else to read it. And if no one else read my stories, then who cares as long as I like them. So if you’re doing your passion for a living then that’s awesome, but at the same time it is a relief knowing that your standard of living is not reliant on the things you enjoy doing.