Should I start a side hustle, business, passion project?
The other day, I was speaking to a friend, and she said to me, I’m thinking about starting a side hustle.
What do you think I should consider before I start it?
1. Why? What’s the purpose behind doing this?
The first question I think you should ask yourself when making a decision like this is, why?
Why do you want to do a side hustle/passion project?
And be completely honest.
I think this is an important question to ask because for you to do something consistently long-term, you need to have a purpose attached to that activity.
For me, I wanted to do my part to destigmatize mental health after losing a friend to suicide so there’s an emotional purpose behind it, but there doesn’t always need to be am emotional purpose.
For example, if the answer is you want to build an extra income stream, that’s okay.
2. Is doing your side hustle the best way to achieve that goal?
Based on what you said in #1, is your side hustle the best way to achieve that?
My friend wanted to start a podcast. One of her main motivators was creating an extra income stream.
In my opinion, for her objective of building a secondi income source, I think there’s a lot more better ways to make money than starting a podcast.
Starting a podcast requires years of building community, listenership and there’s no guarantee of a lot of money will come.
Instead, if money is your motivator, you may want to build a skill that’s known on the market to pay. For example, you can go on Fiverr and see what’s paying well on the side and either start doing that activity if you know how to do it or build that skill.
a. How much time do you have?
You may laugh, but I think you should seriously calculate how much free time you have in a week right now and then set aside a set amount of time from that to your side passion project/side hustle.
You may say, I get home from work at 6 PM. I will set 7:30–8:30 M-F on my side business/hustle/passion project.
b. Are you willing to sacrifice that time?
Doing 1 hour of your side hustle may mean doing 1 less hour of Netflix or 1 less hour of being available to socialize.
It is a sacrifice.
The time I’ve spent doing Grateful Living, I could’ve probably joined 2–3 different adult sports leagues teams.
I’m sacrificing that socializing time for Grateful Living.
4. What’s your benchmark for success?
Again, be really honest with yourself. For a side business, it may be a certain revenue target.
For a podcast, it may be a certain follower/subscriber metric.
This is important because when you may not feel like doing your side project or if you start evaluating whether it’s worth it after doing it for some time, you need to go to this benchmark for success.
For me, my benchmark of success, was as long as 1 person was listening to an episode, I’d continue going. I knew the impact of losing 1 life so that’s really where I set the bar — as long as one person was finding value, I’d continue.
Obviously, that’s a low bar, but that’s what I set it too and that’s why I’ve stayed consistent in doing it.