More than one in three Americans have a side hustle, and the numbers are increasing rapidly. Making money is usually the main motivation, but there can be other rewards as well, especially if you focus on creating something that matches your personality.
It’s important to think about how your endeavors will affect your overall quality of life. After all, you may be investing a lot of your free time and energy in them, on top of your full-time job.
How can you find a side hustle that meets your individual requirements? Study this quick guide to get started.
Nonmonetary Benefits of a Side Hustle
Some of the highest paying gigs are tutoring and website design. However, there are less tangible factors that can be just as important as income.
Consider these strategies:
1. Continue your education. Hands-on learning is often more memorable than reading books or listening to lectures. Research subjects that interest you. Strengthen your client relations and marketing skills.
2. Expand your network. Make new contacts and offer to help them. You may wind up with more colleagues and friends from different backgrounds.
3. Seek fulfillment. You’ll feel more motivated if you find work that is meaningful for you. Your gigs might serve others or help you to reach your goals.
4. Have fun. Maybe you’ll discover a sideline you enjoy, or maybe you can find ways to make it more entertaining. If you’re a rideshare driver, listen to music and podcasts. If you walk dogs, play fetch and rub their ears.
Developing Your Side Hustle
Ask yourself what you like to do and what you do well. The work you choose may be related to your current career or it may take a very different direction.
Keep these tips in mind:
1. Consider your hobbies. Examine your pastimes and passions and conduct research to see if there’s a market for them. Some ideas may seem obvious, like catering or selling crafts. You may also be able to write or teach an online course about any subject.
2. Understand your strengths. It will be easier to succeed if your interests align with your talents and skills. Employees who use their strengths each day are 6 times more likely to feel engaged and perform at a higher level, according to a Gallup poll. The same idea applies to your personal activities too.
3. Take personality tests. You can find lots of quizzes online that may give you more insights, and many of them are free. While some of them may not be very precise, you could spot valuable patterns if you take a few and compare the results. Ask family and friends for feedback too.
Making Your Side Hustle Work for You
Take advantage of the opportunity to be your own boss. Pay attention to the necessary details and structure your work in a way that suits your own natural style.
Use these techniques:
1. Set boundaries. It’s great to be enthusiastic about your work but keep things in perspective. Take care of your health and keep up with your other responsibilities.
2. Pick your hours. Enjoy making your own schedule but avoid excessive overtime. Many studies have found that staying under 45 hours a week is ideal for your wellbeing and performance.
3. Protect your day job. Check your employee manual. Make sure you’re complying with any company rules about moonlighting and do your side job on your own time.
Your side hustle may become your full-time job, or it may remain as one rewarding way to spend your leisure time. With the rising cost of living, even many middle-class workers are making their freelance gigs a permanent part of their routines. Find something that will give you personal satisfaction as well as extra cash.