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How do I pursue Dream Job when pay is significantly less?
I make $50k in my office job but love hunting. I'm taking part-time job at Scheels which is where I spend most of my evenings anyway. Salary there is not good and prob never will be over $30k if I would go full-time. I have not the $ to buy land to be a guide and most "guides" here are farmer-hunters who rent/lease land before crops go in. I'm in Iowa so there's no "big game" here. I have some college but no degree--age 40. Moving is not an option. What to do when what you LOVE and are so PASSIONATE about won't pay the bills?
It sounds like you're thinking along the right lines ... taking part-time work in a field that gives you pleasure. And while land prices may be coming down (I've been reading about how this recession is causing or going to cause a "correction" in land and house prices), you may still not have the money you need or want to borrow the money you need to buy the land you want.
I could perhaps suggest a few things.
Find other people like you and form a partnership. Are there other people that you like and would want to join forces with? Perhaps you could buy land together and start your own guide service. With other people involved it brings up the possibility of sharing the responsibility as well as the expenses and potential profits. Are there hunting clubs you might join or other groups to get involved where you could meet like minded individuals to partner with?
How about non profit orgs? Are there any organizations or associations that might need your help? Sometimes the government has programs in place in need of people like you to run them. Take your office experience and shop it around to the organizations in your field and see about supplementing your income as a consultant.
I don't know that it's an option, but could you consider moving to a place where finding a job doing what you love would be more lucrative, like Montana, Alaska or ... maybe even Canada. I know that's a big move, but the cost of living might be less in Canada or the jobs might be more plentiful in a place more often frequented by hunters.
Cater to the wealthy. Are there people with the means who need people like you to oversee their leisure activities? Might you find someone who needs you to be their "gameskeeper?" A lot of wealth has been generated in the past 20 years ... might there be some millionaires in your midst who could use your expertise?
Network, network, network. Talk to as many people as you dare about what your dream is. The more energy you put into what you desire and the more you talk about it and think about it, the more opportunities you have for achieving your goals.
You'd be surprised sometimes at how speaking with people can unlock doors in terms of sparking ideas for how you can be connected to more and more people who could potentially help you get to where you want to go.
I hope this helps. Good luck!