As a woman in business who is super passionate about her work, loves the freedom of working for herself and is ready to take it to the next level this year — I can often be super hard on myself. And if you’re an entrepreneur (or aspire to be) too, I have no doubt you’ve felt the same way.
Sometimes all the heart and hustle we put out there, doesn’t pay dividends. At least not right away. Building a business takes time. A lot more time than we think it will take. That’s why I’m a huge fan of the side hustle.
Having a side gig doesn’t mean you’re not “serious” about your business. In fact, it’s quite the contrary. As soon as I got on board the idea, and took on some freelance work, not only did my productivity go up, but my confidence did too.
I began to look at my business, AS a business. I setup work hours, I managed my time more efficiently, I began taking better care of my body and definitely saw an improvement in my mood. Taking care of your basic financial obligations will free you up — both practically speaking, and creatively.
How to decide what kind of gig will work best for you? In my case, I went with something I already knew how to do. A skill set that I’d been using for years (project management, producing, virtual assisting). But for you it might look like bartending, teaching yoga or working a part-time office job.
These days there are no shortage of creative options to help you hustle your way to entrepreneurial freedom. Recently, I met an incredibly inspiring woman named Mary. She’s a musician, an artist and a Master at the art of the side-hustle.
Mary moved to Los Angeles about three years ago from the East Coast. She hooked up a 9-to-5 job, with the dream of making a career for herself in art and music.
After a year of slogging away at the desk job and not having time to pursue her real passions, she heard about Uber. Right around that time her boyfriend was diagnosed with a serious medical condition and needed her help during the week. Taking on a new, more flexible side-hustle was a no-brainer.
The flexibility of making her own hours allows her the freedom to paint more, have more time in the studio and to help provide care for her partner. Since quitting her “day job” Mary has been able to fully pay for her business’ start-up and ongoing costs and more importantly, have a better quality of life.
Throughout the last few years, Mary has met new friends, explored all over Los Angeles, made connections with people in the music industry and sold some of her custom art pieces. She’s even had riders ask her to sing for them (talk about a great way to market yourself)!
Beyond the financial opportunity, Mary has built relationships in a way that feels good to her.
The minute that I decided to take on some freelance work, my life changed (that’s not an exaggeration). Just like Mary, I’ve learned the art of the side hustle. And yes my friends, it is an Art.
If you’re struggling to make ends meet while building your business, know that you don’t have to. Get a side gig. Freelance. Work part-time. Whatever you do, just choose something. Trust me when I say that this seemingly small step (that you may have a lot of resistance to), might in fact, hold the key to you breaking through and moving forward in your business. It did for me and Mary.
So, I’d love to hear from my fellow women in business. Do you have a side gig that’s helping you with your day-to-day life (while you hustle away at your passion)? What is it? And do you have any tips for people who aren’t sure if the side hustle is worth it. Share your thoughts in the comments below!