2. Chasing the side hustle
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Eric: [00:00:16] Hey everyone. My name is Eric Mueller. Welcome back to The Eric Mueller Show.
Today, we're going to hone in on a topic that really excites me and that topic is chasing the side hustle.
What I love most about this topic is this. I believe that you can start chasing a side hustle at any point in your life.
You're not on a set timeline when you're pursuing something on the side and there really shouldn't be anything holding you back from working slowly towards pursuing any endeavor outside of your main career or day job.
Now I realize that money can be a limiting factor to this.
How do I acquire the time or the money to pursue said side hustle? And I agree with you there. It does pose a barrier to entry.
But the best part about chasing a side hustle is that you are going to be devoting [00:01:16] your time, your free time, to something that you enjoy.
Now a side hustle kinda reminds me about an analogy that I heard from my Dad earlier.
My Dad and I were chatting on the phone earlier this past month, and he reminded me that there was a leapfrog analogy that he wanted to tell me.
And he said that, “Remember you cannot leapfrog in life. Everything has steppingstones or small lily pads that will gradually progress you towards your goals.”
So, I encourage you when thinking about starting a side hustle.
Don't be discouraged by starting out small. I promise you that it will grow over time. And again, you'll be devoting your free time to something you truly enjoy when you start down the path of pursuing a side hustle.
So, let's get right into it.
Now the very first step that I believe you should focus on while exploring [00:02:16] potential side hustles is this.
Find your passion.
Think about what is the thing that you're yearning to pursue?
Think about that for a few moments.
Now keep in mind, this could be related to your main career or your day job, or it could be something completely different.
Let's illustrate this with a simple example.
In the first example, we have an accountant who works at an investment firm during the week, and they decide to create a side hustle in which they help people with their taxes each year.
So, in this case, the side hustle is closely related to the accountant’s field of expertise.
Now on the other hand, let's say [00:03:16] we have a commercial aircraft pilot who decides they want to create a side hustle revolving around their passion for oil painting. This pilot travels to art shows on the weekends and sells their paintings to art enthusiasts.
My takeaway for you from these simplistic examples is this. I want you to start chasing your side hustle by devoting energy to what you are passionate about, regardless of what your day job is.
An easy way to start doing this is by asking yourself the following question.
If I could get paid to do anything that I wanted, what would I do?
This question will allow the creative juices to start flowing within your mind.
If you could do what you truly wanted to do without having to worry about paying for your rent, your mortgage, grocery [00:04:16] trips, various bills, etc. What would that be?
Can you think of a hobby you enjoy that you could potentially monetize?
Your answers to these questions will help you tease out what passions you have and help lead you into which direction you should start going to begin chasing your side hustle.
Now anything that you do on the side, apart from your current day job, should bring enjoyment and additional happiness into your daily life.
But it could also become a source of income for you down the road.
Take a moment and reflect on what you think could be a potential side hustle for you to begin focusing on.
Do you have one idea in your mind that you think you want to go with?
I hope so.
Let's move into the [00:05:16] second step.
So, the second step that I present to you here is essential.
Not only for side hustling but also for leading a successful life as a whole.
And that is making your goals a daily habit.
Successful people are known for their creation of positive habits in their lives.
And by repeating these habits in a daily way, it becomes ingrained into them as far as how they lead their life.
Now keep in mind, this is a difficult aspect to master.
I know that I have been struggling to implement certain habits into my own daily routine, even though that I know that these habits would make me more productive and happier.
What I have found to be effective is this.
By making one small effort in the right direction of building that habit each day, I become closer and closer [00:06:16] every day that goes by.
Let me give you an example of this both relating to life in general and to side hustling.
So, let's say that your goal is to run a 5K in the next 3 months.
Well, the very first small step towards building a habit of training for that 5K is to put on your running shoes.
It actually does not matter if you don't even get a run-in after lacing up your shoes.
You've taken a small step in the right direction, nonetheless. So do not get discouraged or doubt yourself if building a habit occurs slowly for you. You're not alone. It happens for most people.
The next time that you lace up your shoes, maybe you'll run to the end of your street and back.
Another small step.
By putting your running shoes on every [00:07:16] day, you are training your mind to build a habit that will push you in the direction of your goal.
And that is to run a 5k.
So, the 5K example is our life in general example.
Let's switch gears and focus specifically on a side hustle example.
Let's say your dream side hustle is to sell children's picture books.
Well, your first small step in the direction of that positive habit is to open a blank word document on your computer, or grab a pen and paper and write down a list of ideas.
You might be listing ideas for characters, settings, themes, various aspects of your stories, but making that brainstorm list is your first step.
The first day you might write 2 ideas, the next day you might write 5. The point is you are making [00:08:16] progress in the right direction towards your overall side hustle goal.
I am learning how to build more positive habits in my life every day and let me tell you firsthand. It is most definitely not easy.
I know that I want to get up earlier. I want to run every day of the week. I want to produce podcast episodes more consistently. The list goes on.
But I know that I cannot skip from step A to step Z in one day.
And I remember the no leapfrog analogy from my Dad.
We must instead take small steps daily in the direction of our goals, and the positive habits to help us achieve those goals will develop in time.
So, we know that a side hustle should be centered around a passion of yours.
And we also know that implementing consistent daily habits to work towards accomplishing [00:09:16] your side hustle is key.
Allow me to introduce the third piece in the side hustling puzzle.
Harnessing your network’s power to build your side hustle.
Now if you are interested in side hustling related to your main career, you likely have a multitude of connections to reach out to you for guidance right now.
And if you're chasing something more outside of the box, not related to what your expertise currently is. I think it might surprise you how many people in your current network share a passion for the same thing you do.
And I want to Echo my message from The Power of Networking episode.
Networking is key to advancing towards your goals.
And if one of your goals is to begin side hustling, you are going to want to utilize your network [00:10:16] to achieve that goal.
I have several side hustles that I'm currently pursuing, and I'm constantly reaching out to people for guidance.
The people that I asked for advice are the ones who share my passions for those side hustles.
Currently, to give you some background. I'm really excited about learning how to create electronic dance music, how to build a drop shipping business, how to refine my personal website and how to continue to boost this podcast.
Whether it be calling an old buddy from high school, messaging one of my current connections on LinkedIn or reaching out to an expert that I have not yet connected with.
I know this. I don't want to do it all on my own.
And I truly believe that it wouldn't benefit me to try.
I believe that Arnold Schwarzenegger said it best in regards to being a self-made person. You might [00:11:16] hear that term thrown around a little bit: self-made. I did it all on my own. I'm a self-made man or self-made woman.
Well Arnold says, “To say that I'm a self-made man would discount every single person that has helped me get here today. Those that gave me advice, that made an effort, that lifted me up when I fell.”
Really let that sink in for a second.
I feel like some people would feel discouraged if they can't say they’re self-made, that they that they got help along the way.
I really think that that quote by Arnold says a lot.
You know, it really makes me think that self-made isn't a thing or it's very, very rare.
Try to think of some of the people that you admire.
Do you think they had help along the way to get where they are now?
I want you to keep in mind that deciding to seek guidance [00:12:16] is not a sign of ineptitude or inability.
Rather it shows a willingness to learn and develop. The best side hustlers are constantly learning more efficient ways to achieve their goals. They want to learn about the most effective way to do this, and they know it's learning from those who have already achieved those goals.
The fourth and final tidbit of savory side hustling goodness is potentially more important than the first three.
Make sure to enjoy the process.
If you don't like what you're pursuing, you'll lose the motivation to devote your free time to it.
Believe me. I know that what you choose to spend your time on outside of your workday is significant.
And the worst thing that you could do for your enjoyment of the process of side hustling is to chase someone else's passion or dream.
For example, don't get caught up in the mindset that [00:13:16] you need to become a big shot guitarist because your best friend is developing into some sort of a full-time musician. Even if they have 10,000 followers of their band on Instagram.
Don't get stuck thinking that you need to develop the next Facebook, the next Snapchat because your classmate in college engineered and launched this successful social media app called TikTok. If you do fall into this, let's call it a trap. I promise you that odds are you will not enjoy the process of chasing that side hustle because it is not your passion.
Yeah, sure. You might say Eric. What if I realize that I shred more on the guitar than Eddie Van Halen himself? Rest in peace, Eddie.
I would tell you. Yeah, maybe you'll find out you love the guitar, and you're really good at it. But I would also challenge you to think of this. Are you chasing this objective for the wrong reasons?
Are you sure that you are [00:14:16] not striving to become a rockstar because your best friend is one?
I want you to tease out your own passions because your chance of burning out or losing that interest is exponentially lower if you're doing it for you and not somebody else.
What if you don't know what you're passionate about yet?
I want you to think back to my earlier question. If I could get paid to do anything that I wanted. What would I do? Really think about that question, and I've got some homework for you.
I want you to write down two to three answers to that question on a sticky note, and I want you to hang it somewhere that you look every day. This might be on your mirror in the bathroom. It could be on the inside of your front door or it might be on the steering wheel of your car. Find someplace that you'll see that thing every single day.
Find a passion project that will allow you to enjoy the process.
But hey, let's not [00:15:16] rule this out either.
What if you find out that you truly do have a passion for writing but two months into crafting your first novel on the side, you discover that you're not enjoying the process whatsoever.
Perhaps you've tried adjusting your daily writing schedule or you've taken a few days hiatus and started back up. But you still find yourself hating spending free time on that project. The solution is simple here folks switch, side hustles.
I'm certain that there is another avenue in your life to chase on the side that will bring you much more enjoyment and fulfillment.
Trust the process.
It might take some time to achieve your side hustle dream, but don't forget to enjoy the steps along the way.
In closing, I want to reiterate my 4 steps for chasing your side hustle.
Number one. Find your passion. What is it that you are passionate about pursuing on the side?
Number two. Make your goals a daily habit number. [00:16:17]
Number three. Harness the power of your network that you've built
And number four. Don't forget to enjoy the process. Have some fun along the way.
Side hustling should be a nice fun way for you to pursue something that's outside of your day job, and it should be a good time. It should bring more happiness into your life.
I want to extend a sincere thank you to everyone for listening to me today.
I hope that you enjoyed the message as much as I did producing it.
Until next time, Mueller out.
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Voice audio: Written, produced and edited by Eric R. Mueller
EDM music: Produced and edited by Eric R. Mueller