A good job is hard to find. But let’s be honest: Are things getting a little stale in the boardroom? How long has it been since you’ve had a bonus to perk up your bottom line?
Of course, you have no intention of leaving your great job, what with the benefits, pension, and the fact it’s taken you 10 years to finally score the corner cubicle. Yet, if it’s not a Newtonian Law, it should be: Our income acts like a magnet, pulling at our expenses until equilibrium is achieved – or woefully surpassed. Eventually one finds “more month at the end of the money”, as they say.
Getting more monetary gain from your current position may be a non-starter. The economy is “facing headwinds”, as economists put it. Household spending is slowing; job growth is weaker; home prices are cooling. Even Dean & Deluca is faltering. Nothing is sacred anymore.
Maybe what you need is a little something on the side. If you doubt your attractiveness for a side hustle, don’t. Someone, probably “lots of someones”, will spot value in your quirky skills. To find the right match, consider what really turns you on. Here are few ideas to get you started:
- You love animals more than people. It happens. So, get paid to pet some pups. Squeeze in early morning dog walks in your neighbourhood or use your lunch hour to pop into a condo near your office and help a little dog have its midday pee. Games of fetch and furry cuddles are definite perks of this side gig.
- You are super reliable. As any snowbird will attest, leaving a home unattended could compromise one’s home insurance. Housesitting is an easy gig for the trustworthy, responsible and detail-oriented. Show up regularly to check the heating, run the taps and feed and play with the kitty. Cha-ching.
- You’ve got a knack. What comes easily to you that others struggle with? Designing a garden; editing resumés; feng shui consulting. Moonlighting has never been easier with the help of companies such as Fiverr and Upwork, connecting you to a whole world of people searching for quick help with stuff.
- You love a bargain and love to learn new skills. Sometimes a side gig is less about how much you earn and more about how much you can save. Becoming a certified travel agent, interior designer or even realtor, will net you professional credentials along with enviable trade discounts, even if you only use them on yourself or among family.
- You believe life is better behind the wheel. If you enjoy getting out of the house and touring about town, a side gig with Uber or Lyft could be a fun way to earn a second income. If you’ve got a boat, you might charter weekend tours or ferrying services for local cottagers.
- You love the smell of Pine-Sol in the morning. There does exist a noble sort of individual who takes great pleasure in the art of plumping pillows and making floors and windows shine. We’ve met a few professionals who clean houses on weekends for extra cash, bringing order to the world’s chaos.
- You are a creator. People engaged in mentally taxing work all week often relax by working with their hands. Knitting lambswool mittens, building benches, mixing essential oils… whatever unique thing you create in your spare time can become a global business with e-commerce support from Shopify, eBay or Etsy. A little product placement by a celebrity could send your demand soaring.
You love the art of conversation. Podcasts are the new blogs. Though unless your name rhymes with Zyneth Baltrow, they rarely make money right away. The key is landing advertisers and sponsors. Build a social media following, know your demographics and climb to a lofty position on iTunes. Sounds daunting, but people with fewer smarts than you have done it, so get in there.