BY AWA DIA
This past spring semester I took a speech class that revolved around business and professional speaking. My professor at the time had us create a side hustle speech where we were expected to come up with a business that would make us money but didn't get in the way of our day to day life. I remember her telling us how important it was for people to have at least five sources of income. At first when I heard her say that I was thinking to myself… Wow, this lady is crazy. Five sources ?!
Then she went on to list her five sources of income:
1. Coaching people how to be effective public speakers
2. A flooring company that she and her husband created
3. Writing books
4. A customized cupcake business
5. Teaching at my University
When she explained each of them thoroughly and what she does with each source of income it sounded doable. She did not fail to mention that her teaching salary is for family vacations, trips, and fun activities for a family of five. Our assignment was to create a business speech about a side hustle that we could pursue after college. Everyone came up with extremely unique ideas. One student came up with a side hustle selling handmade jewelry, another person came up with a cooking business, and the list of unique start-ups was endless.
For the sake of my assignment, I came up with the idea of selling a motivational watch. It was planned to be much like the Apple Watch, and Fit Bit but motivational. Once that speech assignment passed I went on to actually pursue two side hustles. During that time I was already working at a smoothie shop. I then picked up a job at box office theater on campus during the week that allowed me to also do homework while I worked. Over spring break I was fortunate enough to get a camera and start a little photography business on the side. It was really easy to set up and now I’m looking to order business cards before this upcoming semester. All I had to do was set up a Facebook like page, and a separate Instagram page to market myself.
I started off by charging hourly for graduation photos, fashion, and baby pictures.I moved on to a flat rate as I continued to get better with shooting, and editing. Once I make business cards, I know that my side hustle will expand. Again, this is a side hustle so it very rarely takes up a whole lot of my time.
I know it can be hard to get started but maybe photography isn’t your thing, there are plenty of other side hustles that you could pursue. If you don’t know where to start thinking about what you’re passionate about or a hidden talent you may have. For example, my roommate always enjoyed doing art on the side. After painting, and sketching for fun she was getting extremely good at the type of style she was doing. I told her that she could make a profit off her paintings. One day she decided to post photos of the different paintings she had done, and a Facebook friend contacted her for an inquiry. From there, her talent only got better, and now she is selling larger portraits on the side to friends of ours.
My roommate also dog sits for our neighbors in the area. Many people in college own pets, so if you’re a dog person or a pet person this could be something for you as well. Anything can be turned into a side hustle, so long as you're passionate enough.
It’s really simple to get a side hustle started once you’ve put yourself out there. I also agree with my former professor that it is essential for each individual to get a few side hustles started. Not only is it a great backup income, but it also makes you very versatile. Sometimes the side hustle can be your big break because it sets you apart on your resume. Or it could become your main hustle if it’s thriving enough.
I think it could also be very helpful to pencil in your planner one day of the week where you focus on your side hustle. This will keep you on top of it, and it won’t allow you to give up on your hustle. Business Insider wrote an article all about additional tips to creating a side hustle, and an in-depth step by step to creating a side hustle. The woman who wrote this article describes a side hustle as“,A business you run in your free time that allows you the flexibility to pursue what you're most interested in. It’s a chance to delve into food, travel, fashion, or whatever you’re passionate about whilst keeping your day job.” Get out there, and don't be discouraged, if it doesn't work out you can always try something else.