Man With Headphones Facing Computer Monitor

Extra Income and Side Hustles

While getting rejected for jobs that a. I’m not really qualified for and b. I don’t really want to be doing I thought it was time for a blog post.

I have a bunch of posts in various stages of completion. Why not write a completely new one.

I just finished budgeting out the pay we received using YNAB. I’ve talked about that tool before, I still use it, I still think it’s great. You can read more about it here.

While doing this a couple of things came to mind.

Pile of Gold Round Coins

Things are a bit shit on the financial front in general. The cost of living has risen and when there was spare money before these days things aren’t as good as they once were. I’m sure a lot of New Zealanders are feeling the pinch.

Side Hustles to the Rescue

There seems to be a lot of people wanting to find that magical side hustle to bring in the extra income to make your life easier.

I saw someone online get angry about the term side hustle, they stated people should stop glamorizing it and call it what it is, a 2nd job. I get where they are coming from, but I don’t agree with it fully.

This post isn’t going to talk about specific side hustles you could do. There’s a lot of information out there about those. Seriously just Google it. This post is more about my thinking about it and why I feel some people go about it all wrong.

My Definition of a Side Hustle

It’s a way to make some extra cash, without it being a fully blown 2nd job.

It can vary for everyone. Maybe you want to make thousands of dollars, who wouldn’t. In reality if you made an extra $100 a week I bet that could be very helpful.

The Problems with People Wanting a Side Hustle

I see people asking about side hustles and how to make extra money on Facebook and in groups all the time.

I think they overthink it or want a quick easy solution.

Photo Of Woman Touching Her Head

Like most things in life the people that are doing things are doing things. Not wondering where to start or getting stuck in that cycle of trying to find the highest paying thing with the least amount of work.

This is where you can get scammed by people promising you the earth or at the minimum selling you some crappy course on how to make money.

Don’t Jump Head First into Something Brand New

There is a difference between learning a new skill because you like it and want to learn it. Or you see other people making money from it.

In my experience for most people if they just follow the money they will either have a really crappy time. Or have really poor results and probably be in a worse off financial hole then they were before. Remember when everyone wanted to have a coffee cart?

If you really are passionate about learning something new then go for it. Do it in a responsible way. Cheap or free or get a taster for it. Ask people if you can hang out, help out or do something for them. Then go from there.

For everyone else out there looking for a side hustle idea. Here’s what I think you should do.

Use Your Skills and Knowledge

Whoever you are or wherever you are I bet there are things you know or have skills in that other people don’t. Seriously.

Do not undersell yourself here.

You will need to think about what you can do and what you know. Write it down.

You might be thinking “I don’t have any skills” “I don’t really know how to do anything” “Everyone else knows how to do this stuff”

If you think any of these things YOU ARE WRONG.

The people you hang out with or interact with a lot might know your skills and knowledge, but others don’t.

Let me give you some examples to help get this point across before we talk about the next steps to make some extra money.

People Don’t Know What they Don’t Know

I interact with people with a variety of backgrounds and a very mixed skillset.

It took me a while to realise that over a period of time you pick up a set of skills that is uniquely yours. You might not be the best at any of them, but that’s OK.

I find some people don’t like technology and don’t / won’t put time into learning simple things. Entering items into a spreadsheet or printing it out is like magic to them.

Coming up with something to post on social media or updating a website is beyond them.

Interacting with different people or explaining an idea in a simple way is not something they are comfortable with.

Driving long distances or moving items.

Knowing how to grow a giant pumpkin. How to run an event. Talk to people on Zoom. Replace a headlight in a car.

My point is you have a skillset that can help other people. When you can help other people you can find people that will pay for it.

Use Your Skills with New People

For every post of people asking what to do for a side hustle there are many responses asking this person what they can do. Once they reply with what they can do the answer is always do more of that.

Man Standing In Front Of People

The trick I feel is finding the people that could use your skills. This is the piece that is missing I think for a lot of people.

It’s the finding these people that can help you with your side hustle.

Reality Check

Do you want to make extra money to help pay your bills etc? Or do you want to leave what you already know how to do and learn something new?

Where to Find the People that Want you Skills?

First step is ask around. Ask friends, family and anyone else you know. Just like people don’t know what they don’t know, they also may not realise there is someone out there that can help them out.

Facebook groups is another option that could work. Just don’t be too pushy or you’ll get kicked out. Offer great advice or knowledge and see if anything comes from it.

You can look into freelance type websites which may work for you. A lot of these places are a race to the bottom with a lot of people from developing countries offering amazing things at dirt cheap prices.

Value your worth. What you offer may not be right for everyone and that is OK.

My Example

I have a bunch of different projects. Things I like to work on and build and hopefully help people in some way. Are they money making machines, not really. They sometimes bring in some extra cash which is nice but it can be a bit sporadic.

It’s taken me a while to realise just what I know and what my skills are and who they might be valuable to.

  • I can build a website, but I’m no expert in it
  • I can create graphics but am not an expert in that either
  • I know how to make a podcast for free
  • I can easily talk to people and love learning about what they do

For some people I know this is nothing. They live and breathe each and everyone of those bullet points and can do everything better than me with their eyes closed. They are machines and experts in their craft.

Other people I know struggle to turn on a computer, they know social media is something they might need to use. But they are focusing on other things. The things that make them money and the things they are experts in.

The sweet spot for me is trades people that need an online presence. Making them a website and helping them be seen on the internet. They don’t really know how any of it works. They just know when they get more calls it must be working.

I only do this with people I know. I’m not a fan of dealing with random people too much. But it is an option if I need it.

In Conclusion

Side hustles can be a good thing. Just don’t overthink it.

Let me know what you think about side hustles, your experience with them and what you’d tell other people by leaving a comment below.

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