What is a side hustle you ask? In this article, we will be covering how to find a side hustle? How much can you make with a side hustle and more! We can’t want to share with you what a side hustle is because it’s life changing.
In fact, before we dive into what it is….let me tell you that side hustles were the key step in helping us achieve our goal of paying off $108,000 in a short time period, and by apply the easily digestible, less intimidating approach for the 2% Rule.
If you would like to get a topic in this article quickly, just click on one of the topics below and you will be taken right to it!
- How side hustles changed our lives
- What is a side hustle
- What “Hustle” use to mean…
- What Hustle Means in the 21st Century
- Side Hustle Examples
- Why You Need a Side Hustle
- Side Hustle Ideas for 2020
- How to Find a Side Hustle in 2020
- How much can you make from a side hustle
- What Side Hustles has The Thrifty Couple done?
- How to Get Started on Side Hustles
- Follow the Side Hustles Podcast for the Latest Information
How side hustles changed our lives
Side hustles changed our financial lives! It may sound weird or not believable, but many do not know what a side hustle truly is or what it truly can be because we live in a world where so many want to “teach you how to make money” and in the end, just take yours instead. But with the right research and understanding, you can truly unlock the financial power and freedom that a side hustle can yield.
What’s even more amazing is that we started down the side hustle path a good 16 years ago only with the goal of bringing in a few hundred extra per month to help us attack our $108k of debt a little faster and 16 years later, we’ve experimented with dozens of side hustles, many which have become a core money making, self-employed business that has lent itself to a life of financial freedom since!
“I don’t want to say that to overwhelm you and make you think you have to make a full-time life out of side hustles. In fact, most everyone uses side hustles to get to an immediate financial goal.”
I don’t want to say that to overwhelm you and make you think you have to make a full-time life out of side hustles. In fact, most everyone uses side hustles to get to an immediate financial goal.
What is a side hustle
Now time for the all important question of What is a side hustle?
The simplest definition of side hustle is any legitimate work that you find to do on the side in addition to your regular job in an attempt to make extra money.
“The simplest definition of side hustle is any legitimate work that you find to do on the side in addition to your regular job in an attempt to make extra money. “
You can see this similar definition of a side hustle in the 21st century across the web today! In fact, from one website dedicated to this topic, they have a good definition:
And it is SO TRUE! There is more to it than that!
Before we dive into why you should have a side hustle or side hustle ideas, it’s important to understand what it is and what it is not.
What “Hustle” use to mean…
In fact, when talking with people in person about side hustles, we often get responses that indicate most people believe that they are like the get-rich-quick schemes, MLM’s or other potentially “spammy” pyramid schemes or other shady ways to make a buck. And when you talk about hustling previous to 2000ish, it is negative. It usually refers to money gained and “earned” in shady ways.
In fact, following the “text book” definition of the word hustle from dictionary.com, it’s negative.
Another “text book” source defines hustle in a similar negative way. Previous to the 21st century, a hustle was a “dirty way to gain money.”
So you may be saying to yourself, “Thrifty Couple, what on earth are you suggesting we do to gain financial freedom?!?” But never fear….it’s the 21st century. Life changes as technology and opportunities change. Millions worldwide are changing the traditional definition of a hustle to something incredibly popular, successful, effective and honest! Putting in an honest day’s work for an honest day’s wages!
“So you may be saying to yourself, “Thrifty Couple, what on earth are you suggesting we do to gain financial freedom?!?” But never fear….it’s the 21st century. “
What Hustle Means in the 21st Century
In the 21st century, hundreds of thousands have found legit work at home opportunities primarily because of the online age in the 21st century where legitimate business can be done online. The concept of work at home has changed dramatically in the past 20 years! Therefore, a side hustle can and should be totally legit without get rich quick, questionable practices or pyramid schemes.
We love this article from Merriam-Webster regarding the origin of side hustle because when reading it, it’s almost like the dictionary publisher themselves are stunned by this baffling word and the evolution of it’s meaning and intent today, vs. 70 years ago, vs. 100 years ago.
The definition has changed worldwide! It’s a very positive thing in 2020. In fact, side hustling means that you are working hard and with determination to make money. And the “side” part means that you are doing this in addition to your regular, full-time job or “on the side.”
LinkedIn is a 21st Century website for those building a career. So they have a great 21st Century definition of the word “Hustle.”
Read the article if you would like, but we really love the last line because it is SO TRUE!
“The only thing you have any hope of controlling in this world is you and what you do with your limited time. Hustle is 100 percent within your control.”
We will even share the 21st century definition from UrbanDictionary.com. I know, I know, not many will take this as truth, but the reality is that a hustle is different today than it was 20, 70 or even 100 years ago. Some places online have caught up with the 21st Century and this is one of them!
There are hundreds of posts, books and even websites dedicated to helping you work with confidence, determination and working hard to earn money on the side!
A side hustle isn’t just online work though. There are thousands of side hustles where the primary business transaction and work takes place offline, but most still utilize an online presence to grow their offline side hustle. For example, you might have a business where you are repairing lawn mowers for people. You will advertise your services online, perhaps throw up a quick wordpress website for people to find you locally online and leave reviews, etc. but the actual work is physically done offline.
Side Hustle Examples
I have personally met many that use side hustles for many different things! Let me list a few of the ways that personal friends and family have utilized side hustles to meet immediate goals:
- A friend wanted to take her family on a Disney cruise. She “side hustled” for about 4 months by doing online affiliate marketing through a blog and paid for the trip entirely, and even took $1,500 cash in spending money.
- A family member had a full-ride scholarship for a college degree, but not housing. She needed $7500 for the year. Each summer, she side hustled by delivering phone books to pay for room and board and went to school debt-free and without needing a job.
- Another friend wanted to cover the utility bills in their home each month to help lighten the bill burden the family was experiencing. She side hustled about 5 hours a month doing Fivver tasks to pay for the water, sewer, electricity, gas and insurances in their family bills.
- Another friend has an elaborate Christmas celebration each year and a decently generous Christmas budget for each of her 3 kids. She side hustles by reselling items online each month to add to the Christmas savings account. We recommend 1% of your budget for Christmas savings, but she wanted to do even more than the recommended and this is how she does it!
- A neighbor wanted a new car and decided to use Uber and Lyft to make the payment. Another great example of working on the side to pay for a specific goal or just in general.
The above list only gives 5 of thousands of reasons and ideas. It’s a HUGE world!
So side hustles are a very positive, useful tool to help individuals, couples and families achieve financial goals and even financial dreams.
Why You Need a Side Hustle
After sharing a very brief success story of our $108k of debt-payoff and sharing some specific examples above showing very specific reason people did side hustles, it’s time for you to consider why you may need a side hustle.
Side hustling provides for financial freedom, debt freedom, less stressful vacations, meeting financial goals sooner, makes ends meet, solving financial problems, etc.
“Side hustling provides for financial freedom, debt freedom, less stressful vacations, meeting financial goals sooner, makes ends meet, solving financial problems, etc.”
In the end, of you are completely satisfied with your financial state and satisfied that it yields to less stress, more financial freedom and even allowing you to give to others, and do things your family loves and wants to do, then you may not need a side hustle.
But if you are not content remaining where you are, or if you want to reach goals sooner, or if you want to work towards being financially free, then a side hustle could be one of the best things for you, your family and your financial future!
It’s not as hard as you may think, as long as you find the right side hustle to do!
“It’s not as hard as you may think, as long as you find the right side hustle to do!”
Side Hustle Ideas for 2020
We’ve been side hustling for over 16 years. We’ve done dozens, and dozens of side hustles. Some we earned a little, some we earned a lot, some became full-time gigs and many hang around to contribute a few hundred each month to be a collective several thousands a month in side hustle earnings today.
It can actually be incredibly overwhelming to find the right side hustle for you and to get going. It’s one of those things that you can overthink to the point that it paralyzes you! But if you just do a bit of reading and research you may read a list of ideas and a few stick out to you and get you excited.
“The best thing to do is to find these 1-3 side hustle ideas and JUST START! Don’t think too hard about it.”
The best thing to do is to find these 1-3 side hustle ideas and JUST START! Don’t think too hard about it. Do it before you build a website, do it before you have everything in order. Just start offering your services or dive into a side hustle world! We are barely going to scratch the surface in this section. There is no way one article can contain most of the ideas out there.
We shared some above, but the best thing to do here is to lead you to some ideas:
- Visit our Over 100 Ways to Earn Extra Income page. It’s a growing and budding list that has over 130 ideas now! We update it with more ideas and then include links to any that we have written further about or have discussed on our podcast.
- CNBC.com provides a quick list of things you can do utilizing your phone.
- Entrepreneur.com provides a list of 50 ideas for the 21st century.
- We have a Facebook Group that is dedicated to building an encouraging, motivating and inspiring place to find your next side hustle as it is a FAST changing world! Join Find Side Hustles with The Thrifty Couple on Facebook to stay up to date and get help with questions you may have.
- Finally, the Take Back Your Finances Podcast is focusing on legit side hustle ideas in 2020. Be sure to subscribe to the podcast for updates when the latest episodes are available.
How to Find a Side Hustle in 2020
Now that we have shared what a side hustle is in today’s world, and perhaps convinced you why having a side hustle is right for you, the next question becomes, “how to find a side hustle!”
Many people get caught up in this part of starting a side hustle. They want someone to be able to answer for them: “What side hustle can I do?”
To answer this question, you are going to need to put in some thought and research yourself. There are tens of thousands of ideas. We are here to help you hone in on one or a few that match you, but you know you better than anyone else!
First, because this is an unlimited and endless world, giving you the exact answer YOU need for YOUR situation is going to be nearly impossible. So it will require you to do a bit of research and digging to find what’s right for you!
Second, the above list is a GREAT place to start. In the Side Hustle Facebook Group, you can also ask for ideas and explore what others are doing!
Third, ask yourself the following questions to help hone in on the right idea:
- What am I good at?
- What do I enjoy doing or talking about?
- How much time can I devote to this passion?
- What am I trying to pay for/financially cover with this side hustle?
- Are there any secondary passions I have?
- Will my idea require any investment to start?
- Is this a service/product that is needed in my area?
- What “competitors” are out there?
- What makes me and my skills/passion different than my competitors?
After you ask yourself these questions, this is a good place to start. We find that most people are successful with their side hustles if it is something they are passionate about.
Based on the answers to this question, start doing some google searches and see if anything triggers an idea. At the most basic level, you can start doing things that you have a skillset in and then move from there.
I found a pretty unique opportunity many years ago when we were very deep in debt. I had started couponing to afford groceries and pay off debt. So I became quite good at it out of desperation. Often times, a grocery trip meant I could get 70+ percent off (and sometimes even make money on the trip) my whole grocery bill. So I found a side hustle by teaching others how to coupon with couponing classes hosted at people’s homes locally. I immediately started making a couple hundred per month, but then I ended up making several thousands per month from this side hustle after 18 months! I taught 3 classes per week in the evenings or on Saturdays. My schedule was booked for weeks out! I never once thought about how it could be a side hustle when I started couponing and I started small and spread by word of mouth!
How Much Can You Make From a Side Hustle
One question we often get asked is “how much can I make from side hustling?” This is a very open-ended question. First off, the sky’s the limit. you are in 100% control. So based on the side hustle you find, how you market yourself or your side hustle or how much work you decide to take on will all be a determining factor in what you can make.
But know…there is NO LIMIT! Which is awesome! In fact, when we talk about the 2% Rule To Get Debt Free Fast, there are two parts.
Part #1 is cutting expenses by 2% each month.
Part #2 is finding ways to bring in extra income at a 2% increase each month.
But what we tell people and what we find is that by setting this small goal each month, you can get your spending and budget to it’s rock bottom state in a less painful, progressive, habit-forming way but there is an absolute limit to how much you can save. You can only save so much money and can only cut your budget by so much each month. There’s a limit.
But never fear as this is where part #2 comes in! If you focus on bringing in extra income at 2% of what you are bringing home now, you have an achievable small goal. For most people, this is about $60-$120 per month extra. Which is VERY doable from the first month. But what is super cool is that after a few months, people get into their groove, find the right side hustle and are doubling, tripling, quadrupling or MORE of this 2% increase each month!! There is no limit to how much you can earn.
And your earnings are going to be based on the side hustles you implement and put effort into.
So start with and expect to bring in 2% more than you are bringing home now and work in these increments and one day, it will probably just take off and become much bigger and bring in much more than you could have imagined.
That 2% goal is less overwhelming and gives you the guts to get started because “its not too much.” It’s a realistic goal that gets you to bringing in more faster than setting a bigger, unrealistic (in other words, discouraging) goal!
“For us, we started increasing our income by 2% each month. Today and for many years, we’ve had our side hustles exceed our regular monthly income! But starting with that goal probably would have paralyzed us, especially when it took many, many months to get pas earning 2% only.”
For us, we started increasing our income by 2% each month. Today and for many years, we’ve had our side hustles exceed our regular monthly income! But starting with that goal probably would have paralyzed us, especially when it took many, many months to get pas earning 2% only.
What Side Hustles has The Thrifty Couple done?
Wow – that’s quite a question! Since paying off most of our $108k debt and living the financially free life today has mostly been a result of side hustling for the past 16 years, it’s quite a list!
We have written about many on this list and many of these we have tried ourselves. But I am going to jot a quick list of what we have done over the years starting with the FIRST side hustle to today. Note that we actually engage in quite a few at the same time today.
- Delivering Newspapers (Both)
- Delivering Phonebooks (Both)
- Selling on Ebay (Cassie)
- Buying larger used items, cleaning or fixing them up and reselling on Classifieds (Both)
- Teaching coupon classes (Cassie)
- Started a blog (Both)
- Affiliate Marketing (Cassie)
- Doing programming jobs on the side (Alex)
- Amazon (many things in one) (Both)
- Writing ebook and digital materials (Cassie)
- Miscellaneous online opportunities (Both)
- Selling crafts online and at craft show booths (Cassie)
- Selling t-shirts (Both)
- Selling virtual races (Both)
- Running coach (Alex)
- Digital Marketing for companies (Cassie)
- Copywriting (Cassie)
- Online gigs (Both)
- Ecommerce (Cassie)
- Travel Blog (Cassie)
- Travel Agent (Cassie)
- Podcasting (Both)
- Writing and publishing a book (Both)
- Creating a membership site for fitness (Alex)
- Creating a membership site for marketing (Cassie)
One of the most popular posts on our site is how I bring in $3,500 while I stay at home with our 6 kids. These are all side hustles! It’s an interesting read that would maybe trigger some ideas!
How To Get Started on Side Hustles
Now it’s time for you to hit the ground running! Here’s your checklist of how to get started:
- Complete the questionnaire in this section of the article
- Join the Facebook Group Find Side Hustles with The Thrifty Couple
- Read through this list of over 100 side hustle ideas and jot a few down that sound interesting to you.
- Begin googling from your list of ideas and your questionnaire
- Utilize the Facebook group to help answer questions you have regarding side hustles that you discovered with your google search!
Follow the Side Hustles Podcast for the Latest Information
We hope that we have inspired you today to take a bit more financial control and find side hustles that will help you grow but also help reduce your debt and help your bank account grow.
This is a FAST-paced, EVER-changing part of the world. So stay up to date and glean more ideas by following our podcast: Take Back Your Finances.