You probably never go a day without hearing about how you need a side hustle. Need extra income? Get a side hustle. Are you looking for a quick way to riches? A side hustle is your answer. Want to quit your boring 8 to 5 hell? Build a side hustle. Just need anything…. Why don’t you start a side hustle? This sounds more like romanticising side hustles; believe me; it is not always rosy.
Myths About Side Hustles
There was a time I used to believe you must have a side hustle to make more money, create wealth and possibly have something to retire to after corporate life. Not any more. I might have taken a break from the corporate world, but it was never about building a full-time business from a side hustle. I thought it was, but it was not.
During my time away from full-time employment, I have had a lot of time to reflect on what we hear or are told about side hustles. I have realised some of the details we are sold about side hustle are just myths. These misconceptions can lead you down a path you will not love or will not solve your goals towards financial independence.
Let’s demystify these misconceptions!
1. A Side Hustle Will Finally Solve Your Money Problems
This could be any further from the truth. If you are bad with money, no amount of it or sources of income will solve your money troubles! What matters more is how good you are with money. What are your money script, personality and emotions? If you can figure these out and learn how to control and manage them, perhaps you can solve your money troubles with extra income from a side hustle.
Moreover, your side hustle will likely have expenses, and the money it brings might not always be stable. So, if the side hustle is not bringing in enough money or has more costs, you will need to bail it out with your personal money. That means having no extra money from the side hustle to pay yourself. Therefore, it is important to be aware of these, keep proper records and pay yourself back when the side hustle brings in enough money.
2. We All Need a Side Hustle
There is no denying that side hustles can bring in extra income and possibly grow into a full-time business someday. But let us not forget side hustles are demanding. A side hustle will take much of your free time, affecting your lifestyle and relationships.
I used to write academic articles for some friends who had accounts back in college. I started this a year before my graduation when I was introduced by a friend whose friends had these accounts. When I started working, though, it became quite hectic to manage. I was just interning, but the workload was like a regular employee. The long commute to and from work made it quite challenging to manage both gigs during weekdays. So, sometimes I would stay longer in the office, so I don’t get stuck in traffic and write. With time, I got too exhausted and started taking weekend gigs only. By the time I finished my internship and became a full-time employee, I had quit writing altogether. It took me a few more years to even think about getting into the side hustle business again.
Whether you have started a side hustle or are rethinking your options, you can rest easy knowing that we all do not need a side hustle. Some people are happy and content working an 8 to 5 job. And that’s okay. You can capitalise on your employment to ensure it helps you achieve your financial independence goals. As discussed in this post, you can make more money from your career by:
- Asking for a raise
- Negotiating for better benefits – employee benefits like better medical coverage, matched pension contributions at a higher percentage, education benefits, more time off, or working from home can go a long way in saving and investing more money.
- Learning a new skill or upskilling – it allows you to increase your competitive edge, opening opportunities for better and higher paying job opportunities
- Earning more through bonuses and commissions
- Changing employers if your current employer is not paying well enough
3. You Must Grow Your Side Hustle Into a Full-Time Gig
Do you love what you do? Would you like to keep advancing your career? Then you do not have to turn your side hustle into a full-time gig. If you have one, you can keep it as just that — a side hustle.
As stated earlier, your employment can afford you your financial success. So, why not keep your side hustle and job, and enjoy the best of what they can both offer? After all, there are things employment accords that will be yours to bear when you are self-employed — benefits like matched pension contributions and medical cover.
4. Your Hobby Should be Your Side Hustle
Yes, monetising your hobbies can help you bring in extra income and build a side hustle. But I am a believer in keeping some things to myself. Things that make you happy and take you from mundane everyday life are worth protecting.
That’s why monetising your hobby and interest is sometimes never a good idea. Bringing the money and business aspect into your hobbies and interests might make these things boring or all about money. So when you need to relax and take a break, what will you result to?
If you must monetise any of your passions, ensure that doing it repetitively will not suck the joy out of doing it. Choose a hobby or interest you do not mind turning into a business and losing your love for it. You might enjoy making money out of it. But what if you don’t? Because when this happens, the side hustle will undoubtedly run down or get you into depression.