What’s Your Side Hustle?
I had never heard of a side hustle until about five years ago, but even then I didn’t really get it. I thought people either had a job or didn’t, and of course some people hold two jobs or more. So, what is the difference between a side hustle and a part-time job or a hobby?
According to sidehustlenation.com, a side hustle is simply anything you do to earn money outside of a traditional job. It provides a different energy than a traditional job or a part time job because in a side hustle, most often you set your own hours, establish your work ethic, and time is your biggest investment. Many with a side hustle start small in their spare time, and find that with low risk and meaningful investment of time and energy (both of which are free), they can build a steady flow of income.
I am sure many among us consider handling as a side hustle – something to compliment a traditional weekday job. However, showing dogs is a lot of work, and I personally would consider that a full time job. And then there’s the flip side. If you are not being paid to show dogs then it is a hobby which, as we all know, costs money, rather than earns money.
When shelter in place orders were announced last March, I remember seeing someone’s post on Facebook asking what people were doing as a side hustle. I saw everything from clipping dog nails to selling nail strips to being an Uber driver to mowing lawns. People were finding creative ways to earn money and stay busy.
After sitting at home for a month I was starting to go a little stir crazy. Like many of you, I enjoy my road trips and time away with the dogs. My driving time is my thinking time, and my time to get caught up on phone calls. I had scrubbed and cleaned every surface in my house, purged my wardrobe, and planted so many flowers that the garden center at Lowes knew me by name. I will say my yard and flowers never looked better!
By the end of April I started looking for other things to occupy my time and stay busy, and I stumbled upon Shipt, which is basically a grocery shop and deliver service. I submitted my application and did a video interview and I heard nothing until January. Finally, my approval came in, and I went through a few courses in the App, got my credit card and shopper gear and I was ready to go.
Let me tell you, I am loving this side hustle! After two months, I’ve managed to navigate my way through some strange purchases and deliveries, and I have a much better understanding of the best orders to accept, the best times to “work” and the best days to “work.” Obviously, living in southwest Florida at this time of the year (read: spring break and snowbirds) makes this type of side hustle a no brainer. I’ll be curious to see how long this luxury lasts, as right now there is some serious money to be made just being a really great shopper!