Two years goes by pretty quickly. It’s funny how you can run into people with the feeling of just having seen them before realizing some 24 months have passed since your last encounter.
Living in New York City, chance meetings with people from my past happen regularly. But as of late, the reaction upon each mini reunion has changed substantially.
Two years ago I was a master of the side job. A struggling actress slash hostess slash babysitter slash personal assistant slash whatever I could do to make enough money to get by.
Today I have a career as a personal finance expert.
My chance encounters are no longer characterized by probing “what are you up to”s, but filled with congratulations and inquiries about recent career achievements.
As totally rockstar as it is to enjoy praise in place of questioning, the full benefits of my two-year journey from starving artist and side job extraordinaire to full time freelance finance pro have been far greater than anything I could’ve imagined.
Yep, this blog you’re reading right here is the little engine that drove the journey between then and now.
Two years ago I started publishing my musings from the back of a crowded tour bus somewhere between Nebraska and Iowa. Little did I know those initial bits and pieces of The Broke and Beautiful Life would become the platform driving my entire freelance career.
Where then I raced to meet self-imposed deadlines for posts that didn’t pay, I sit here now stressing (in the best possible way) over an impending deadline to create content for one of the biggest financial services companies in the world.
I don’t share all of this to gloat (though I won’t pretend I’m not at least a little bit proud). I share my story because I know it’s important.
It was a story like this that inspired me to start writing my own two years ago, opening me up to a world of possibility I’d never previously considered.
And it’s this story that I hope inspires someone else to turn their side job into a career today.
Related Reading: How to Start a Blog That Will Change Your Life
As a broke actress, I didn’t have much to devote to my side job startup, so I started out with a simple question, How much am I willing to spend?
I gave myself a $1,000 budget. Not exactly chump change, but comparable to what I had previously spent on failed entrepreneurial endeavors (like my short venture into personal training).
I used that money to buy three things…
Admittedly, much of my initial investment was in superficial aspects of my blog. But this outside in approach proved remarkably effective in garnering results. When people perceive professionalism, it breeds professionalism.
[tweetthis]When people perceive professionalism, it breeds professionalism #entrepreneur[/tweetthis]
Proud of the logo and design I was sporting, I worked to create top notch content that supported it.
Having invested $1,000 into my side job start up, I became fiercely committed to making it profitable.
To be honest, It’s easy to come up with money making ideas, it’s hard to stay excited about them through the monotony and challenges of follow through.
On the one hand, it’s only been two years, on the other hand, it’s been two years – every day. Building a side hustle is time consuming, turning a side job into a career is all consuming. If you’re goal is to make the full-time flip, I suggest choosing something you’re passionate about pursuing.
[tweetthis]A side hustle is time consuming, turning your hustle into a #career is all consuming.[/tweetthis]
This is where the magic happens. In whatever you do, if you want to be successful on any scale, large or small, you have to add value.
The more value you add, the more you become a resource, the more opportunities for work and income you’ll receive.
[tweetthis]In whatever you do, if you want to be successful on any scale you must add value[/tweetthis]
Related Reading: How to Make Your First Extra $100 Per Month
With professional visual elements in place and a reputation for providing value, all that was left to do was scale my business.
My first money making venture came from reaching out to other bloggers, asking if they needed any content. That initial ask was the start of my side hustle – $30 bucks here and there.
The only major difference between then and now are the numbers. The number of times I reach out and the numbers I ask for in compensation.
To go full-time, you need to know how much money you want and need to make. From there, it’s simply a matter of pitching and asking until you surpass that threshold.
I wish I could say there was something special or unique about me that facilitated the two year turnaround of my side job into a career, but I don’t know that’s necessarily true.
Sure, there are lots of little things that facilitated the process, but none more powerful than my not-so-secret ingredient – persistence.
It’s all about the follow through.
Coming from a professional acting background, I’ve learned to take rejection like a pro.
I will face as many “no”s as necessary to find the “yes” I need to succeed.
In mastering that, the vehicle, the value and the opportunity for income grow immeasurably.
For step by step guidance turning your side job into a career, download my FREE scale your income starter guide here!