Rockin' That Side Hustle ~ Personal Finance Blog

That WORD. Hustle. Dude.....what does that even MEAN.

I've ruminated on that. A ton.

You hear these business coaches and they preach "embrace the HUSTLE"...."you better HUSTLE girlfriend"

I'm HUSTLING dammit! 

But here's the thing.....am I....are you....doing everything in our power to maximize our earning potential (thereby increasing the amount of green we can throw at that debt monster?) 

Or, are we being lazy gazelles who somedays are probably just like "Screw it, let the lion eat me"

I hear ya. 

But, if I'm able to get serious for a moment, creating a side-hustle...especially one that is in a niche you can excel at, can be not only amazing for your pocketbook but for your self-esteem and "desire to hustle" as well.

 

WHAT SHOULD MY SIDE HUSTLE BE? 

This is where the sky is the limit and you need to look deep inside yourself and be honest about your strengths and weaknesses.

For instance, my mother-in-law is an AMAZING organizer. She lives to organize. It's a skill she just HAS and in spades (I am actually scared of the damage she could do in a Container Store). I've always said if she ever needed or desired a side hustle, she should become a professional organizer. Not only are there not any other PO's in our area (that I'm aware of)....but she could make a KILLING....she's so good at it.

No takers on that idea yet, but I claim ownership once it's acted upon.

There are TONS of options for "side hustles"....and what's great about a side hustle is you can build it around your schedule, responsibilities, and your availability. You set the hours you are willing to put forth and how much you want to charge. It's governed by YOU.

Here are some other options to consider:
1. Personal Shopper (go to the grocery store for home-bound or disabled folks). Run errands, pick up prescriptions, etc.
2. Landscaping - LOTS of people love being outside and LOTS of people hate it just as much. I'd gladly pay someone to do some planting and weeding. 
3. Babysitting
4. Dog watching/Pet sitting
5. You could sell something you make. Are you a fabulous artist? Do you make something unique that could be of value to the public? Have an idea for a new product? (Watch your COSTS on something like this, however. The cost of doing "business" may not be worth it)
6. Writing - There are companies that pay for blog content, ghostwriters, etc.

You really need to take inventory of what you enjoy, what you excel at, and what you can monetize. 

HOW ABOUT MLM'S? 

MLM stands for Multi-Level Marketing. These are those companies like Avon, Arbonne, Norwex, etc. A lot of folks jump on these as side-hustles because they are told you can "work from home/in your pajamas"....that you can make a full-time income and that it's your "own business". 

They can send in their start-up funds and BAM....built in business. They coach you on what to sell, how to sell, where to sell, and who to sell to.

Now, I'm gonna be straight with ya'll, I am not a fan of MLMs.  This is just my personal opinion. I know a lot of folks who work their own MLM hustle and good on them for doing their thing. I'm just not a fan of the high-pressure social media marketing tactics, the promises made and often not kept by the parent company, and the whole platform that this is "your business" when really, it's the parent company that is making the bulk of the money and a very large percentage of sales folks are barely scraping by. 

Not to mention the cost of upkeep on new products, etc. 

Many MLM folks end up tapping their inner circle over and over again for sales, realize that it's a lot more work than it's worth to really make a good amount of money, and eventually throw in the towel.

HOWEVER, caveat to that, if you are happy in your MLM side hustle and you find that the money you are making with it is fulfilling your need to pay off debt or move along in your debt-free journey in some other way, then you do your thing. If it's something you succeed at, you should keep at it. Just tread CAREFULLY.....and remember the parent company is always going to be in it to make the most money as possible, first and foremost. 

 Sales is a TOUGH side hustle, even if it's not via a MLM. 

We had a retail store for a while and while we never really started it to make a lot of money, the markup on our inventory (new vinyl records) was not very high....so we were constantly having to "hustle" for used inventory, where the markup was better. 

A side-hustle is much more profitable if it's a service you can provide, not necessarily a product. 

HOW DO I GET THE WORD OUT?

This is where social media is the bomb (people still say that, right?)

Depending on what you decide your side hustle should be, get the word out to your "base" on Facebook, Twitter, and/or Instagram.

Now, don't BOMBARD those you love with your new idea. Just put it out there. 

If you're offering a service that local businesses may benefit from, make up some flyers or order a reasonably priced rack-card from  Vistprint and take it on down to the businesses that could use you.

Maybe take out a small ad in your local paper. 

START SMALL....once you get those first few "customers"....and knock it out of the park with them...the word of mouth will start to grow.

Remember, this is a SIDE hustle...not a GET RICH QUICK scheme.

TOO LEGIT

Even if this is a side hustle you still have to be working legitimately. This means pay your taxes, claim your income, pay sales tax, don't skirt the system. Don't be that guy.

Make sure what you choose to do is LEGAL for you to do (that you don't need a license in your area to perform that service, for instance). 


 


The great thing about the "side hustle" is you can be creative and also take your time and try out some different things. 

Currently I'm trying out writing....ghostwriting, blog writing, content creation.....who knows, maybe I won't have time to really "hustle" that much work and it won't be worth it.....but if I have time in the day, I wanna be hustlin'.......for now, anyway.