The Side Hustle: The Pros, Cons and How to Figure Out if One is for You


The side hustle is an increasingly popular option for those looking to make money on the side. From driving Uber to cutting hair, there are many ways to earn additional income. But what does this mean for your day job? How do you know if it’s worth it or not? And how much time should you be spending on your side hustle in order to see results? These are all common questions that we explore in today’s blog post.

Definition of a Side Hustle

A side hustle is a second job that may be done in addition to one’s regular employment. A side hustle is most often freelance or piecework, providing extra money. Side hustles are frequently something a person is passionate about rather than a 9-to-5 job used to make ends meet.

A side hustle is not the same as a part-time job. While a part-time position retains some elements from your main employment, such as scheduling and pay, a side hustle allows you to choose how much you want to work and what you’re paid.

Side hustles are a popular option for many people struggling to get out of debt or dipping their toes into the business world because they offer financial security to fewer than half of Americans.

How a Side Hustle Works

Because a side hustle is work completed outside of one’s day job, it’s more likely to take place at night, on the weekends, or during vacation periods. It provides extra money while also allowing you to work outside of the typical 9-to-5 hours.

You may start a side hustle on your own or complete work as a freelance, contract, on-call, or part-time employee for an organization.

For those who aren’t quite ready to leave their job, or are frightened by the prospect of becoming an entrepreneur, side hustles may provide a way to express interests, test concepts, and build a healthy client base if they decide they want to give notice.

Where does side hustle come from?

Since the late 1600s, hustle has been a English term. Originally from Dutch, hustle meant “to shake,” but it evolved over time, including “push roughly,” “move swiftly,” and “give one’s full effort,” as seen in basketball.

By the 1920s, hustle meant “to defraud or swindle,” and it was applied to a con job. In black vernacular of the 1940s, hustle meant a “paid position” (and legitimate one at that). By the 1950s, we have evidence for side hustle, or a source of income operating as

The internet and the gig economy, which began in the 2000s, have fueled a new type of side hustle. People can now generate money through projects on social media platforms such as blogging or selling crafts on Etsy. People now have greater alternatives for a side hustle outside of their main employment, much like driving with Uber or freelancing on Fiverr.

In 2016, Uber debuted the tagline Get Your Side Hustle On, which has become so associated with side hustling that it was incorporated into the company’s name.

Side hustles are often seen as a way to generate money on one’s own terms, and while they may be done part-time, they aren’t generally conceived of as such. In the 2010s, side hustles have been recognized as activities, projects, or jobs undertaken as part of one’s overall personal or professional identity or “brand,” regardless of whether they make money.

Examples of Side Hustles

  • Selling clothing
  • Making and selling handicrafts; starting an Etsy shop
  • Freelance writing
  • Teaching online courses
  • Tutoring or coaching
  • Babysitting
  • Photography services
  • Selling baked goods or home cooked family meals; catering
  • House cleaning
  • Providing lawn work or maintenance services
  • General labor or warehouse work
  • Dog walking or pet sitting
  • Providing delivery services
  • Mystery shopping
  • Brand ambassador or product demonstrator
  • Survey taking

All of these methods are fantastic ways to supplement your income without having to quit your day job.

Seasonal Side Hustles

If you’re not ready to commit to a full-time side hustle, you might try one that fluctuates with the seasons.

One of the most popular ways to make extra money is by creating and selling cards for Thanksgiving, Christmas decorations, or Easter chocolate bars. This may be a fantastic method to satisfy your creative side while also earning some additional cash during the holidays, while continuing to work on your primary business throughout the year.

What To Look For In Earning Potential

When it comes to selecting the finest side hustle, one of the first things that comes to mind is how much money you’ll make. However, it will also be linked to scheduling.

With completely flexible scheduling, driving and delivering packages has a excellent earning potential. If you were to compare it to working a second job, there is low earnings potential and difficult scheduling.

Earning potential is also determined by your time horizon. You can almost certainly increase your earning potential over time if you have the time to devote to your side hustle. If you need money immediately, though, you won’t have much opportunity for growth.

How To Assess Growth Potential

You should also consider growth potential when it comes to your side business. Some of these professions have no long-term development potential. Others, such as beginning a blog, have enormous long-term development potential.

If you’re interested in finding out more about the best side gig, you’ve come to the correct spot! But it’s a personal question about where you want your side business to go. Some people may only wish to make extra money for Christmas. Other individuals may want to attempt to grow their side hustle into a full-time job.

It’s not a case of “one size fits all,” but you should understand the potential for growth when you begin.

Benefits of Side Hustles

A side hustle might help you focus on your interests or pursue your ideal career without sacrificing a traditional job’s regular income. A side hustle not only adds to your bank account, but it can also improve overall happiness in your life.

The flexibility of a side hustle is also a major benefit. Side projects give you greater job and work-life balance because they allow for flexibility in your career and working hours. Side hustles are frequently solopreneurial or entrepreneurial, so when you’re the boss, you get to decide things like when and how long you’ll work. Entrepreneurship may be appealing to those who find themselves exhausted and enslaved by the demands and expectations of a conventional 9-to-5 job.

A side hustle may provide additional financial independence, allowing you to not only get out of debt, but also save for an emergency, build a retirement fund, or manage expensive household items. It may even allow you to spend some money on extracurricular activities in your monthly budget.

A side hustle does not usually need a significant financial investment up front. Some side occupations focus almost entirely on offering a service, while others are concerned with the sale of your own goods or purchases you obtain from a third party and resell. Many of these work opportunities do not need extensive education or a specific talent. In fact, some individuals discover that their side hustles make them more money than their full-time job.

Because there is no such thing as a minimal amount of time to invest in your side hustle, you may work on two or three—or even more, if you have the opportunity—simultaneously. This may allow you to generate an infinite number of new sources of revenue. Even if your day job falls through, you’ll still be paid regularly until you find your next full-time job.

Side Hustle Startup Costs

A side hustle should be a low-risk business, implying that it does not require a lot of start-up cash. There are several rewarding lifestyle businesses that were founded without breaking the bank, like as Chris Guillebeau The $100 Startup.

Many individuals start their original side hustle with just $5 because that’s all it cost to open a Google AdWords account at the time. (Now it’s free!) Most of us were started for less than $500, including a website, over the years.

How Much Time Does a Side Hustle Take?

Rather of spending a large sum of money, the most significant side business investment is generally the hustler’s time.

Many people are familiar with the term “side hustle,” but few understand exactly what it entails. A side hustle is a part-time project that individuals use to acquire new skills, augment their income, or simply test out some new business concept.

A side hustle should take up no more than 20 hours every week at first. Of course, if the business succeeds, you may increase your hours as needed, but it’s crucial to keep the time investment to a bare minimum at first.

The objective is to turn some knowledge or skill you already have into a modest but successful business.

If it feels like work, don’t do it. Side hustles should be fun!

(The last thing you need is another job you despise!) And, I’m sure you could find time to fit in an hour or two extra every day, no matter how busy you are.

Best Practices for Side Hustles

There are several advantages to working a side hustle, but there are also some concerns to consider before diving in with both feet.

Conflict with your day job

Before starting a side hustle, it’s important to think about the potential conflict with your day job. Some businesses have rules against moonlighting, but such restrictions typically apply only to professions that are somewhat like those you perform for your employer. In other words, if you’re an engineer, it’s extremely unlikely that your firm has a policy restricting you from offering pet sitting on weekends, but you may be violating those rules by moonlighting as an engineer on the side.

To avoid any potential conflicts or problems with your employer, be sure to discover out what your company’s policy is regarding moonlighting or side work. There are other benefits to adding information on downtime, too. For example, your employee handbook should contain information on participating in outside activities, but if it does not, you may always inquire with your company’s HR department.

Time considerations

Improper pricing, insufficient research, and poorly planned marketing campaigns all play a role in what you charge. You should also be cautious not to over-commit yourself. When you take on too much work, you’ll disappoint your clients, which will limit your chances of obtaining additional work.

With the advantages that may be gained, many side hustlers feel the sacrifice is well worthwhile. There’s no reason not to start one today because there are so many benefits of having a side hustle.

How much will a side gig cost you?

The initial startup costs for each side hustle are different. To get an idea of what they’re like, talk to individuals who run similar enterprises. Reach out to them in LinkedIn groups, listen to podcasts about starting a business in a certain sector (you can find them through ListenNotes), or attend free online events where you may network and ask questions.

If you’re self-employed and freelancing in your field, your expenses will probably be modest. To get started, you’ll generally need a computer and phone that aren’t connected to the one you use at work; You’ll also need a laptop or computer with an internet connection and the software listed below if you want to be successful.

If you want to service huge clients, you’ll need a simple website to pass their compliance checks. They’ll want proof that you’re self-employed and marketing yourself, so stay away from any mention of the words “employee” or “worker.” There are numerous free web hosting platforms, such as WordPress, Wix, and Weebly. To establish a website, you’ll need to register a URL with GoDaddy or one of its rivals.

If you’re operating a product-based business, your start-up expenses will most likely include a website, as well as possible online advertising on Google or other platforms. You’ll have to include inventory and delivery expenses if you don’t pick a drop ship model. It’s crucial to chat with individuals running firms in the same sector about what they are.

Create a simple record-keeping system

For one thing, having all of your side hustle-related receipts in one place will assist you calculate how much you may deduct for business expenses. Also, if the taxman ever knocks on your door and asks you to verify those costs, you’ll have documentation to back it up.

Starting your side hustle

There are many benefits to having a side hustle, but it’s important for you to consider the potential drawbacks as well. A side gig can be an excellent way of earning extra income and pursuing your passions outside of work, but only if you’re willing and able to properly manage it.

Jane and Phil

We've been full time bloggers for a few years now and we hope that we share content, across multiple websites, that is interesting for you.

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