When we think about paying off debt and finding extra money to save, the first thing people look at is where to cut other areas of their spending to fund these financial goals. The truth of the matter is that you can only cut your expenses back so far. You still need to eat, keep the lights on, clothe and shelter yourself and have reliable transportation to get you to the job that pays for those things. There’s a certain threshold where you will no longer want to cut back for the sake of getting ahead because day-to-day life will become miserable. You won’t be able to sustain that life over the long haul.
But what about increasing your income? In mainstream US culture, we have become engrained with the idea with having one full-time job to provide all of our needs. If you think about it, that’s really putting all of your income in one basket. I don’t think I have to tell you that this kind of thinking is not recommended for our investment portfolio and yet it is perfectly accepted for our income generation. Why not have several sources of income so if one goes away you, you have other income streams to fall back on? A side hustle is the perfect way to start an additional income stream on your own terms.
Here are some ways to start generating some extra dollars to help you reach your financial goals – or possibly a whole new career:
Do a side hustle that you enjoy. If you are going to do extra work on the side, you might as well pick something you enjoy making extra bucks. Love animals? Start a dog walking business. Love hosting people? Rent out your home or a room on Air BnB. Love driving around town? Become a Lyft or Uber driver. You can even use some of your other talents to create extra income. You may be really good at spotting bargains so start an Amazon FBA business or buy items at garage sales or thrift stores to sell on eBay or Poshmark. Maybe you have artistic talent so sell your work on Etsy. Do you speak a second language? Translation services are in high demand, especially in the medical field.
Try several different hustles to see what fits you best. Don’t take on a side hustle just because your friend said it was an easy way to make a ton of money. Any kind of work where you will make good money will be…work so it needs to be something you enjoy and fits your disposition. You probably shouldn’t take on teaching a night class when you hate dealing with people. You probably shouldn’t be a dog walker if you are severely allergic to dogs. Find something that fits you and your personality. Don’t worry if you start and quit several side hustles. It’s all a part of the process to see what a good fit is. And you will make more money when you do work that fits who you are.
Find something that is flexible with your schedule. There is definitely pros to having a job with a set schedule – you have reliable hours and pay. But creating a side hustle that is flexible with your schedule will work the best in the long run. You can work when you can and when you want to. You have control over the number of hours you put into the side hustle. You can make it as much or as little as you want it to be.
What side hustles are you interested in starting?