If the idea of starting your own side hustle has crossed your mind a number of times but you didn’t quite know what is a side hustle, is it good for you to start a side hustle, how much time will you need in order to make it work and can it really fit in your already busy overwhelming schedule, let’s dive right into it and discuss what is a side hustle all about.
What is a side hustle?
A side hustle is like a small project that you can do ‘on the side’, out of your usual 9 to 5 working hours (I don’t know why they keep saying it is 9 to 5 when in real life it’s more like 8 am to 6 pm…) and by doing that, you can earn an additional amount of money every month, on top of your monthly salary. The answer to the question ‘what is a side hustle’ is – it all depends on what you have in mind for this side hustle to be!
If you are a busy mom – check out the post ‘Side Hustles You Can do From Home‘.
Do you have a hobby that you are passionate about and dream about turning into a business someday? Or would you like to make an extra $1000 a month so you’ll be able to do more of the things that you really want to do in life? Like travel, pay a cleaner to help with cleaning the house or even pay out your mortgage much faster?
Or maybe you would like to earn enough money so you can finally quit your job and be your own boss? A side hustle can be anything you want to, you just have to figure out what kind of side hustle you really want to pursue.
Why start a side hustle
I can tell you that for me, I’ve started with just one main reason but as years went by (and I tested more and more side hustles) I started to have more and more reasons to build and grow this, that now, I feel it’s a must for me! That there is no other way. Here are my reasons why I would start a side hustle today –
1. So I can be independent! No more someone else managing my time and that I have to report to.
2. So I can spend more time with my family.
3. So I can have more patience and energy for my family at the end of the day – and I know that the only way to achieve that is if I am feeling happy and fulfilled.
4. So I can be financially free. No more taking jobs that I don’t enjoy doing.
No more trying to hang in there at jobs that I don’t like but pay well and I am afraid to leave my safety net or even having the option to quit at a job that makes me too stressed and affecting my life and my wellbeing.
5. So I can travel the world with my family and have an amazing time with them.
What is a good side hustle?
I am sure that the answer to this question will be different for every one of us. I guess that a good side hustle will be something that will fulfil your dreams. For me, I know it must be something that I am passionate about otherwise I won’t spend the time that I need to grow this thing and I won’t succeed in building that. I know for myself, that I need to do something creative and if I’ll enjoy the process of building it, then I will also make the money I want to make.
Benefits of a side hustle
The immediate and clear benefit of having a side hustle is earning more money – no doubt about it, it’s an amazing benefit.
In terms of financial risks, there is a HUGE benefit to starting a side hustle while you are still working at your day job. This is one of the most important things for me. The stress of quitting my job and starting a business with no financial security whatsoever, without a steady monthly income and without knowing when I will make money from this new side hustle, is something that I decided not to have in my life. I decided that I would rather be exhausted from handling a full-time job while I am building my side hustle than not sleep at night, especially when you have a family to take care of and a mortgage to pay.
Another big benefit of a side hustle is that it could be anything you want! Starting something that you are passionate about is the most wonderful thing in the world. It’s a gift that you give yourself. Especially when you are a working mom and you feel like 99% of your day is actually spent either at your job or taking care of your family and there is no time left for yourself, for your dreams and for the things you want. So for me, this is a gift that I gave myself- to take the time, every week, to do the things I want to do in my life and just see where it takes me.
Another awesome benefit of starting a side hustle is when you are not happy at your current job and would like to start a new career in an area you haven’t worked on before and don’t have the experience.
Starting a side hustle as a part-time job (a few hours a week) to gain experience and knowledge or doing a freelance job so you can show the things you’ve done to your next employer – is the best way to go about it. That way you can even ‘check the water’ in your dream job and see if this really feels right to you and what it is really all about without jeopardising your work and steady salary.
How to find time to work on my side hustle
This is something that for years now I am testing and changing and I can tell you one thing. When I first started out building my first side hustle, while I was working at a full-time job, I thought that I have no time. That I am already so overwhelmed with my day-to-day life that there is no way I can find a few more hours every week to work on this. But today, after doing it for so long, I can tell you then at first I was working about 2-3 hours a week on my side hustle (during the weekends) but now I work about 14! HOURS a week on my side hustle and still keep my day job and leave some time to do other important things as well! It’s only our minds that keep telling us that we can’t be more efficient with our time and that there is no spare time in our busy week. If you really pay attention to the most important things you need to do every day, you’ll be able to prioritise differently and find more time in your day.
For me, the time that I am the most efficient is very early in the morning. It could be 5:30 – 7:30 am Monday to Friday or 6:00 – 07:30 am and I can tell you that every morning that I am keeping my promise to myself by waking up on time and start working – it fills me with a sense of joy and pride. . because I’ve started the day with something special just for me and that I completed it, with no delays. This actually helps me to start the day at my day job happier. On the weekends I also work about 2 hours a day but am much more flexible with the exact time I will do that.
Check out the complete guide ‘Starting a Business While Working Full Time’.
Can a side hustle be a passion project?
Absolutely! And it’s not just can be a passionate project, it’s even better if it is! That’s because if it is something you are passionate about then there is no way you will not be successful in it. Why?
Because you would want to learn more about it and be better and better at it every day.
Because if it’s not a passion project then you wouldn’t have the energy to wake up early in the morning to do it or stay up late after a long day at work to do the things you need to do.
Because if you won’t enjoy the process then you will just procrastinate until you’ve completely
give it up.
This is why it’s much better to think about what you really want to do and what you will be interested in doing not just for the next few months but for the long run.
Will I need to work on my side hustle every day?
As Newton once said ‘An object at rest stays at rest and an object in motion stays in motion’. So what does it actually mean? The most difficult thing is to start (because as long as you don’t start it’s easier to keep your current situation which is ‘rest’ ( I know you don’t really rest, ever😊).
Whatever it is that you were thinking of doing for years, whether it is writing a book, having your own blog, create your own products, the most difficult thing is to start. But why is it? You are so motivated and excited by the idea so how come you didn’t start by now?
Because there are so many thoughts running through your mind and most of them are telling you why it won’t work. But the thing is if you won’t start if you won’t give it try and just try, then for sure this idea that you have in your head will never work!
Remember Dr Seuss’s book ‘OH The Places You’ll Go!‘? That’s exactly it. When you know that whatever happens, you’ll still have your job to rely on then there is no risk! This is what I love about building a side hustle. It sets you free from all this noise in your head and makes you brave enough to start!
But let’s go back to Newton for a moment. If you can overcome whatever fear prevents you from starting and doing the first step, the only thing that will keep you going is the habit of working on your side hustle every single day. It can even be for a very short period of time (like 30 minutes). It’s much more important to commit to daily work than the amount of time that you are going to invest in it because when you get into the habit of investing this time daily, soon you will start seeing the progress you’ve made and this is what will give you the momentum and motivation to continue no matter what.
However, when you only do that once in a while, it’s very easy to give up because all the momentum is gone and life will keep standing in your way so it will be hard to keep up with your new side hustle as well. Well, at least I can tell you that this is what works for me. The best thing is to have a plan and try your best to stick to it and change as you go to fit your schedule in the best way. So if what will best work for you to work on your side hustle a couple of hours every weekend, then that’s great, go for it.
Do I need to invest money to start a side hustle?
It depends on what side hustle you have in mind. I prefer to start small and test my idea and most important to test myself and make sure that I am committed enough for the long run to my new idea before I spend a lot of money on it. The most amazing side hustles you can start today require very little money to start, something like a few hundred dollars, that’s it. With the Internet access that we have today, you can do almost anything without having to invest a lot of money. The only thing you will need to invest is your time.
And have no mistakes, if you only have a very small budget to invest in this, it absolutely doesn’t mean that you won’t succeed with your new side hustle, you can even have better results than someone else who invested a lot of money but didn’t have the discipline to stick to it or didn’t bring enough value to its customers. When you start a side hustle, the most important thing that you would really need to invest in order to be successful is your time!
Best side hustles for working moms – let’s explore some great ideas
Working moms are special. They have a LOT of things on their mind and they are extremely busy. This is why there are a lot of things to consider when you are trying to add a side hustle to an already extremely busy schedule of a working mom. Let’s break down all these obligations and constraints that a full-time working mom usually has –
An extremely busy morning, especially if you have small children that you have to get ready and get them to school or to daycare before work.
A full busy day at a day job when you are not available to work on anything else.
A busy afternoon of picking up and dropping off kids, cooking dinner, doing the laundry…saying goodnight, trying to read more than 2 sentences in the book you are planning to read for a month now but surprisingly falling asleep.
That means that the best side hustles for working moms are not any kind of freelance work that requires you to respond to customers during the day like – sales or any type of work that requires customer service or requires you to be somewhere in the middle of the day because most of the day you are not available.
The best side hustles for working moms are the ones that can work flexibly according to your schedule. These are projects that you can work on on your own time like blogging, writing books and publishing them, affiliate marketing, graphic design or content writing that you can do as a freelancer on Upwork or any type of work that you can do online at your own time and doesn’t require specific hours of your day that you will have to be available.
Can my side hustle turn into a full-time salary?
100%. If you want your new side hustle to replace your full-time salary and even more – then this is what you have to plan for. The important thing is to have the right plan from the start and for that to happen, you’ve got to know, what you would like to get out of it. For example, if you are thinking about publishing a book then most likely, that if you only going to publish just one book, then this wouldn’t be enough to replace a full-time salary even if it’s a really good book. But if you want to publish multiple books and become a professional writer, in a specific niche, then for sure, this could turn into a full-time income and even more than that.
If you started your side hustle thinking that it will be a good opportunity to switch your current job, worked part-time and loved it and proved the idea to yourself, then you can now apply to a full-time job in your new area and you’ll have a much better chance of getting the job that you want and making full-time salary because now you have the experience to show.
Should you quit your job to pursue your side hustle?
This is so tempting, I know! Just to think about your day, waking up in the morning, no need to go to the office or log in to your work computer and just work on your passionate project from morning till evening and see it growing at a fast pace…
I know it sounds great, but I wouldn’t recommend it. A few reasons that you would want to keep your day job while working on your side hustle –
First, you’ll be far less stressed! It’s really stressful to start something new that you don’t know when you will make money and if you’ll make money at all.
Second, you will have extra money to put into your new business and it’s very important.
Third, remember that every single task that you would want to do in your new business will take double if not 3 times the amount of time you’ve dedicated to it in the first place. So building a real business takes time, longer than you think and when you start you need to know you are in it for the long run.
Will I have time for my kids? My Partner? For myself??
If you plan your special time for your kids, to be with your partner and to take care of yourself (and stick to it!) you will see that you are able to do all of it. This could be taking one child for a special time with you for 1 hour a week on one of the afternoons, not neglecting your weekly date night with your partner, scheduling a few walks over the week even very short ones like 30 minutes each.
Should I tell my friends and family about my side hustle project or keep it to myself?
If you have a partner then it’s very important to explain what you would like to do and why you are doing that because you would need their support along the way and it definitely will affect your day-to-day lives.
Should you tell your friends? One thing you need to remember is that not all your friends will respond in the same way. Some will get excited and support you and some will discourage you by telling you why it wouldn’t work. I find that especially in the early stages of a new business you would need an enormous amount of motivation and courage as it is hard enough to overcome your own voices telling you not to do it.
At this point of starting something new, you would only want encouragement and positivity from other people so the best thing to do is not to share your new ideas with people that you know will discourage you and won’t support you.
Ok, let’s cut to the chase, when can I quit my job?
One thing I can promise you – it will take time! It can take months and it can take years, depending on how complicated your side hustle is and also on how committed you are! It depends if you are going to work on it 2 hours a week or 10 hours a week.
If you decide to start a side hustle you need to know that this is for the long run until you will see the results and especially the results that you want. But if you keep going, if you keep making small steps every single day, it will compound and big results will come but it requires commitment and resilience (btw, if you haven’t read the book “The Compound Effect” by Darren Hardy, this is a must for you to understand how small steps that you do every day will compound and in time will result in big success).
If you make progress every single day, although a small one, you will start feeling happy and fulfilled because you will start enjoying the process and you will see how far you came because the time will pass anyway so why not plan for a better future to happen a year from now and start today to walk this path?
I’ve never been a freelancer or managed a business, can I make it work?
Like everything new, you learn along the way. One step at a time – remember! You don’t need to stress because you have your day job to keep you going. You don’t need to have experience in running a business or being a manager. Everyone starts from the beginning. Everything is learnable these days in the easiest way by using the internet, watching tutorials, signing up for courses, and implementing and testing what you’ve learned.
In the beginning, you would do everything yourself. You would be the marketer, the bookkeeper, the designer, the content writer or anything else that you need so the only management skill you would need is to manage yourself. If you take one step at a time, you will get there.
I hope I was able to bring some light to the question of what is a side hustle and how you can make it work as a busy working mom. If you are excited about starting your side hustle, join me on my journey to build the side hustles I love and create financial freedom.
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