My sister and I talk almost daily and text multiple times per day, so it wasn't too unusual that we were talking about the state of my finances and how something simply had to give.
After taking a few years off to be a mostly stay at home mom, I found myself back at full time work and for various reason clinging to middle class by a thin thread. No money for extras and as I looked at how to increase our household income, I was beginning to wonder if I was going to have to sacrifice time for the money we desperately needed. Have you ever been there?
I'm no stranger to working more than one job. Working a "side gig" was common in my community. I've had friends clean houses and others who worked retail. While prepping to buy my first house, I worked at the local chicken chain to compensate for my inconsistent hair styling paycheck. But now with four kids and a full time job again, how could I possibly have enough time to start a business.
But how could I not?
Building a side hustle does take time. While the hours may be part time in theory, it can take a lot of them to get your business to a profitable place. I made the mistake of spending a lot of time on things that didn't actually make me money in the past so I know that you can be truly busy, without actually doing business.
But still, there are lots of reasons to consider starting your own business, from being able to share your unique personal interests or talents with potential clients to being to grant yourself a raise when you need to without having to beg your boss. Here are my 3 favorite pieces of advice for newbies who want to start a side hustle.
Choose a business that you'll love. One of the worst things I see from my side hustling sisters is them starting a business that ends up being just another job. In the startup phase, your business can consume all of your free time, you have to be sure that you love what you're doing or you'll end up burned out before you start. Working on my business around an existing job means that I got up early, stayed up late, missed out on entertainment and more. Because I loved writing, serving schools and families and sharing a message of inspiration, although I did get physically tired, emotionally I would be invigorated when I was able to complete a task. Don't just choose another job, make sure you pick something you'd be willing to give up sleep for. Just because you've got a talent for something doesn't mean you want to do it all the time so be sure this is something you actually want to do.
Build a profitable business from the start. When you start a business, there will of course be plenty of things you know. Most likely, you're using an existing skill you have so you know how to actually do the work, but you may not know how to do so in a profitable way. Worried about all the legal paperwork, how to start a website or even if you need one. There will always be questions, but don't let that stop you! There are lots of ways to get started, legally and easily and often times there are mentors who will help you for free or very affordable prices. One question you'll need an immediate answer to is how do people pay me. Whether you accept credit, checks or simply cash don't be in the position of turning down money because you don't have a way for people to pay you.
Use the right tools for the job. Adrian Rubin is right when he says we should be using tech tools to support our business growth. Even the most dedicated professional can't keep up with the constant posting you'll need to keep your business visible online. But by using tools that save you time and keep you organized will help.