So you’re thinking about starting a side hustle? Good for you! Getting started can be daunting, but in this post, we are giving you 5 suggestions to help you stay on top of your fear and get organised when it comes to your new side project.
35% of millennials are currently involved in a side hustle in addition to a full-time job, so there’s no reason you can’t start your own too. Whether you’re starting a side project because you’re a budding entrepreneur, or because you want to dip your toes in the water of an industry you have never tried, here are five things to consider when getting started.
1. Is now the right time to start a side hustle?
Firstly, you need to consider the short and long-term impact of your side hustle to work out if now if the right time to start. Understand that starting a business in addition to your day-job isn’t a quick fix for your money problems or guaranteed to satisfy your get-rich-quick plan – although it does work out for some entrepreneurs.
Before you make your first steps, take some time to evaluate how well you’ll be able to balance your side hustle with your existing commitments. Consider how much time you’d like to dedicate to the project each week. This could be an hour a week, half an hour a day or even more.
It’s also important to be realistic when weighing up your time so you avoid burning the candle at both ends when you do make a start with your project. You may have an hour or two to spare when you finish your full-time job, but don’t forget about your other responsibilities, such as preparing dinner, completing chores and having some down-time!
2. Stay organised and keep focused
When starting a side hustle, you must stay organised or you may end up wasting a significant amount of time. Firstly, you need to block in dedicated time during your work weekfor your side hustle. This could be one evening a week, your lunch breaks or a couple of weekends a month.
Secondly, you need to map out your short and long term goals, to-do lists and milestones. This will ensure that you stay focused and actually start to make progress.
If you’re not sure how you’re going to balance your day job with your side hustle, try getting your project (and your life!) in sync with this app called Wunderlist. It’s a to-do list addict’s best friend and a real life saver when it comes to planning projects and setting deadlines. You might also like to check out some of our other favourite productivity apps in this post.
3. PREPARE TO MAKE SACRIFICES
Just like anything you want to achieve in life, you have to know where your priorities lie, so you can hit your side hustle targets. If you really want your project to be a success, you not only have to be dedicated to it, but you have to be willing to sacrifice other, more appealing activities as and when they arise.
We’re not suggesting that you should say goodbye to Netflix binges, social media or your social life, however, be aware that you may have to make sacrifices and put some areas of your life on the backburner momentarily to make your side project plans worthwhile. Keep your focus until you’ve adjusted to having a side hustle and you’ll soon have more time to play with.
Thinking about starting a side hustle? Here are 5 things to consider before you do.
4. Utilise your network
We understand that your side hustle is your baby, but that doesn’t mean you have to do it all by yourself. While pulling plans into place, you may find that you lack expertise in a few areas. Now, a quick Google search may help you out, but it would be better to draw on the real deal so that you can receive personal assistance.
Don’t be afraid to reach out to your professional network when starting a side project as typically people are more than happy to help. If they can’t help you directly, they may be able to refer you to someone else in their network that can.
It’s worth noting that while your project is in its infancy, be wary of getting too many people involved or sharing too much information when networking, as you don’t want to risk a leak. Invest in opinions and information from people you trust to help you reach success.
You can also outsource help from companies and agencies. You may find it’s much more beneficial to outsource your weaknesses as it’s more affordable financially and temporally in the long run. (We outsource a lot our administrative tasks here at Pop Your Career, through Upwork.)
5. Take baby steps
With the number of professionals that freelance while working full-time doubling in the past five years, we can’t blame you if you’re keen to get started. But taking on a side hustle is not a marathon or even a sprint; it’s a life-long commitment because you own it.
Don’t get carried away once you start and keep your priorities in check. Your current employer will still expect 110% from you at work, so don’t be tempted to work during company time or use your employer’s resources – you’re likely to be in violation of your contract if you do.
More than anything, remember to set realistic goals around your current lifestyle. Then, gradually make tweaks as you progress and gain a better idea of what you can achieve. And don’t worry if you don’t reach success immediately, put in the hours and the effort and it will come soon enough.
About the author: Laura Slingo is Digital Copywriter for the UK’s leading independent job board. CV-Library. For more expert advice on job searches, careers and the workplace, visit their Career Advice pages.