5 Things Moms Should Consider Before Starting a Side Hustle

To the moms out there considering a side hustle, here’s what you really need to know ::

Go for it! You can ABSOLUTELY get your side hustle on. Every single one of us has special gifts, experiences, and skills that help others and contribute to society. And as a mom, you already do amazing things daily. You can do this too. Don’t be afraid to ask for help along the way.

There’s a saying that if you want something done, give it to a busy person. Busy people generally have demonstrated their ability to produce results and achievements despite what else they may be juggling. And isn’t it the truth that moms have a special knack for getting things done? Even when it’s not pleasant. Even when life throws all sorts of hurdles in the way. Even when mom already has a full plate. Many busy moms have well-honed productivity and organization skills that make them exceptional businesswomen.

For a myriad of reasons, many moms have a need for a little extra cash or simply feel a strong pull to have a creative outlet that is all their own. This is where many start exploring the “side hustle”. By definition, the side hustle isn’t a main source of income. It also isn’t a part time job at the coffee shop. It’s your hustle – YOU have ownership and steer the strategic direction of the venture.

Moms are knocking side hustles out of the park these days! From blogs to opening an Etsy shop selling crafty creations to fitness coaching to professional consulting firms and everything else in between, moms are out there hustling their second career tails off. For many, the internet and social media have provided the ability to market their products, skills, and knowledge to their “tribe” directly. Social media has also allowed online communities to form to cheer one another on in side hustle pursuits. It has never been easier to connect with other side hustling mommas out there and get a clear roadmap to navigate entrepreneurship while being a mom.

I am currently working in a full-time job in corporate America, while pursuing side hustles in blogging, real estate investments, and social media marketing. For me, this translates into late nights, being okay with not achieving things as quickly as I’d like, foresaking hair appointments for DIY quickie home dye jobs, and some missed date nights with my very supportive husband. It’s certainly not all glamorous, and it most definitely is a lot of hard work.

Here are 5 things you should consider before starting your side hustle business ::

1. Your Vision for Your Life

What does your ideal life look like in 1 year, 5 years, and 20 years from now? What will you be doing on an average day? How many hours a week will you be working? How many hours a day will you be hanging out with your family? How will you give back to others? Where will you be going on vacations? Who will you be grabbing coffee with? How will you feel physically? What kind of house will you live in, and what kind of car will you drive? Do you want to be retired sipping piña coladas at the country club in the next three years? Or is being a super-involved volunteer at your child’s school a priority? Or perhaps you feel a calling to build a business that allows other mothers opportunities for employment? Or maybe you want a creative outlet to dabble in?

Does a side hustle align with that vision?

What are your non-negotiables? Tucking your babies into bed each night? Your exercise routine? 

Hash out the specifics that speak to you and your life, but get clear on a vision. The clearer your vision for your life, the more clarity you will have on what steps are required to get there. I am a big believer that writing your vision down, reading it daily, and speaking it out loud helps bring it to fruition. Always keep your vision in the forefront of your decision-making. Adjust your vision when necessary. And it will be adjusted regularly because…life. 

A word of caution – entrepreneur burnout is real. There’s always so much to be done in your business, not to mention all the demands of you in that other hat you wear – being a mom. Prioritize your sanity and personal health throughout the side hustling journey.

2. Time

This is the fire-breathing dragon all of us moms are trying to slay. Every time we say yes to something, we are saying no to something else. Before taking on a side hustle, look closely at your calendar and have an honest conversation with yourself about where you can carve out additional time to grow your business. Go ahead and physically block off time on a typical week calendar. Is it after the kids go to bed? Is it two weekends a month? Is it 3 days a week in between a soccer practice and a piano lesson?

By saying yes to your side hustle, you will likely be giving up drinks with your girlfriends, Netflix binging, weekends lounging around reading your favorite books, maybe even some of your kid’s activities, and often times your precious sleep. {But hey, we learned to forego sleep years ago!}

Busy moms can squeeze amazing things out of an extra 15 minutes here or there, so don’t discount your ability to grow something great in just a few hours a week!

3. Money

Side hustles can generate some nice pocket change, but many of them are an intense labor of love without a whole lot of payout, at least initially. If money is your biggest motivator, then choose a side hustle carefully. Almost all side hustles require you to reinvest some of your hard-earned capital back into the business. Whether it’s marketing to get the word out there about your business, hiring a virtual assistant, obtaining a certification or enrolling in a development course, hiring an accountant, or generating some print marketing materials, you will likely be paying to be in business.

4. Skills Development

Hold on to your hats, ladies. You are going to learn an intense amount through your side hustle. Get comfortable learning and figuring next steps out. For me personally, this is the best part of side hustling. I love to learn new things, piece together puzzles, and problem solve in an effort to grow my business. This is where you can really show up with an attitude of loving the journey or become mired in an intense amount of frustration. If learning new skills and problem solving in your spare time seems like heaping on to an already full plate, then you may want to choose a side hustle that is well mapped out for you already. A lot of multi-level marketing companies do this well for you. Franchise operations also strive to map out the way for you. However, at some level, you will probably still be learning business skills, such as marketing, accounting, and strategic planning.

5. Network

Okay, I said that learning new skills was my favorite part of the side hustle life, but this one runs a close second. Networking has always conjured up visions of yucky, uncomfortable forced conversations in my head. But networking with like-minded people in the same space as you is downright joyful! This is where so much fun and a real sense of purpose can be found. Whether it’s your customers, your co-workers, or your fellow side hustlers, the opportunities to meaningfully connect to others is plentiful.

A Few Final Words of Encouragement

There is this amazing phenomenon out there right now. The start-up business community is pretty fiercely supportive of one another. Sure, there is competition and there are some negative nancys. But there are so many more cheerleaders, helpers, and folks willing to give back expecting nothing in return. Immersing yourself among these inspiring individuals who take a chance on themselves, who offer what they have to improve their corner of the world is truly the gift of side hustling.

Don’t be too discouraged by stumbles and some failures. With any great feat, there is a learning curve. Give yourself some grace to have some stumbles, adjust, and get back on course again.

There are naysayers and negative people out there. There might be people that think your idea is terrible. Sometimes those people are really close to home. Be okay with fielding some criticism and still pursuing your vision. Take what is constructive from the criticism and use it to build a better business. Then just leave all the rest of the negative junk for someone that has time for that in their life – that’s not you!

There are endless resources out there to support you in your side hustle journey. I’ve shared a few of my personal favorites over on my personal blog

 

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