You may have heard the term "side hustle" in your rounds on the internet. Traditionally, a side hustle is a form of entrepreneurship that you take up on the side of your day job. You might do this in the hopes of eventually giving up your 9-5. Perhaps you are looking for a way to make a little extra cash or maybe you just need to fill your creative cup.
Personally, I am a huge advocate of the side hustle but only because it fits into my lifestyle. For some of you, the idea of hustling in your spare time might scare you to pieces or bore you to tears and that is okay! In this post I am sharing 5 side projects that you can take up to improve your fulfilment and I promise you, there is no hustling involved.
Volunteer work is a fabulous way to find career fulfilment, especially if you harbour a desire to help others. There are so many volunteer opportunities available and once you decide on the type of work you are interested in, it is just a matter of approaching relevant organisations and offering your services.
One of the beauties of volunteer work is that it doesn't necessarily have to be something you have done before - this means it can truly be a passion project. It is worth keeping in mind though, that volunteer work can also be a great transition from one career or industry to another. You can use your volunteer work to gain experience in the field that you want to move into. You can also think of your volunteer work as a "try before you buy" scenario, where you test it out before committing to a career change.
Not sure what kind of volunteer opportunities are available? Here are some ideas:
These ideas barely scratch the surface! If you are in Australia, you can visit https://www.volunteer.com.au for more information about volunteering opportunities in your area.
If you like the idea of making a little extra cash, you might look at the option of taking on a second job. Retail is often a good choice as working hours usually extend past the traditional 9 to 5, meaning that you can pick up shifts at night or on weekends. There are of course other options that might be closer aligned with your professional skill-set or career aspirations.
One thing to keep in mind with all side projects, but particularly in relation to taking a side job, is that you will need to ensure that there is no conflict of interest with your primary employer. Most employers will require you to have your secondary employment "approved" by your Human Resources Department to ensure that any potential risk is mitigated. I am not telling you this to turn you off the idea though; it is just wise to be prepared.
Study is brilliant as a side project as it allows you to continue learning, whether in your current field, or in an area where you see yourself working in the future. Keep in mind that study doesn't necessarily have to be formal, like a certificate, diploma or degree. You might choose to take an online course, night class or self-study.
If you aren't sure which direction to head in, consider the following factors:
Find career fulfilment through a side project - no hustling required!
One of the reasons a lot of people take on a side project is that they are looking for a creative outlet. I have to admit, this is one of the things that drives me - I love writing, particularly in a conversational tone, and I just don't get to do that much in my day job. I also really enjoy experimenting with design, coaching big-hearted individuals and running high energy, informative workshops where I can give my jazz hands and spirit fingers a workout! I get to do some of those things in my current role, which is one of the reasons I love it so much, but I crave the freedom of creative license.
What sort of creative project would help you feel fulfilled? The options really are endless and there is absolutely no pressure. It is good to know though, that if your creative project does take off, you might decide that you want to take it further.
I have included a few examples below of people who have embarked on creative projects that have turned into their side hustle or full-time job! As I said though, there is no pressure, so feel free to use these examples for inspiration as to the kinds of creative projects that you might want to try.
Were you a Girl Guide or a Scout when you were a child? Perhaps you were on a netball team or were part of a group that collected trading cards? Joining some kind of group, club or organisation can be really fulfilling, especially if you are keen to build relationships with people who share the same interests. As an adult, you'll find that there are a lot more options available to you than there were in your childhood. Since the internet was invented, it has also become loads easier to connect with people!
Here are some ideas of groups or clubs that you can join:
I'd love to know if you decide to take up one of these ideas in your search for career fulfilment. Please keep me updated! If you would like to explore how we can work together to make your side project idea a reality, feel free to schedule a 30-minute, no obligation discovery session. Let's make career fulfilment a reality!