“Do what you love and you won’t work a day” is bull-crap, IMHO. I love drinking beer, I truly do. But, no one will pay me for that (unless they want a beer tester). I love creating graphic art, which I think is pretty good, but it seems as though no one will pay me for that, either!  Could I make a living out of playing with my kids? Doubtful. I’m passionate about writing songs, but since no one has bought anything I wrote, I would say that road ends at the bottom of a cliff. And on and on.

Exercising one’s passion is certainly a large component of having a happy and balanced personal and professional life, but there are some unfortunate facts of life: You have to do a lot of doo-doo tasks to support the pursuit of passions. Seriously, do you know how much I hate bookkeeping? But, if I didn’t keep the books every day, the pain of trying to get it all together for the accountant every month would be terminal. And making cold calls?  Expense reports? Fageta ’bout it. I love the creative side of inventing, designing, and building products, and I quite like the engineering behind making them work, but I cannot stomach people management, or supplier relationships, or material research, or……well, a lot of other necessary things.

So, today’s lesson, kids, is about reality. It’s been my experience that as a small businessman and early stage entrepreneurs can only “do what you love” about 50% of the time, if that.  The rest of the time is spent doing a bunch of stuff you’d rather not do but must. Sorry.

In a perfect world where there’s cash flow, you could hire somebody to do all of those awful things, or bring in a partner to raise that percentage. Balancing your strengths with a partner’s weaknesses, and vice versa, is one way to make lemonade (that and a bunch of sugar).

In summary: Do what you love as long as somebody pays you for it. This assumes the grunt work that makes it happen gets done.