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Monday, June 01, 2020

Working It Out: The secret to side-hustling

I often get asked that how do you manage your passion for writing along with your busy work life. Allow me to share certain life-hacks that have worked for me and see if you can adopt them in your life.

Written by Siddhartha S | Updated: June 30, 2019 7:30:57 am
side hustling, how to maximise productivity, multitasking, how to multitask, how to increase productivity, ways to increase productivity, indian express, indian express news We now complain almost about everything in life and can always find someone to blame for our unhappiness. (Source: File Photo)

We live in a privileged world, at least most of us. We have a busy work life of 40-50 hours per week, but we also have weekends and lot of public holidays. We have advanced gadgets in our hands, but I am also convinced that our complaints in life have also gone up. We now complain almost about everything in life and can always find someone to blame for our unhappiness.

I write this piece to help the professionals who have still not found a sweet spot for themselves. They are not happy in the job they are in and at the same time do not wish to explore the unknown. All I am trying to say that luckily in today’s technology driven world we do not have to leave something to start something. We can all be producers and creators and test the waters through side hustle.

I often get asked that how do you manage your passion for writing along with your busy work life. Allow me to share certain life-hacks that have worked for me and see if you can adopt them in your life.

Stop complaining about time and stop blaming others

If you actually measure the amount of hours you waste in useless discussions, phone calls, online chats, surfing, commuting, television, partying you will never complain about the lack of time in life. I know you cannot save the commuting time, but you can use the time to learn something new through an audio education program. The first step is to unclutter your calendar and create time. You have a full 40-50 hour job but you must remember that a week has 168 hours and if you sleep on average seven hours a day, you will still have approximately 120 hours still left.

Yes, I know the maths and the number is 119 but let’s focus on the main thing. I am not asking you to resign from your current job, but I am asking you to be productive and focused. Stop complaining about your colleagues or inconsiderate bosses. They are as human as you are. Do not let anyone else run your week.

Explore what professions excite you

Find out three or four passions that you would like to explore. If you already have a full time job, then I suggest try to pick up a few artistic hobbies that you can monetise. It can be dance, music, photography, motivational speaking, stand-up comedy, teaching yoga, writing, painting, writing movie or technology product reviews. Ask yourself what are the things that make you lose track of time. What are the things you love to learn? What are the things that you can do for free? Make sure your current employer business interests are not compromised. Just choose a field that is different from your current work that gets you a salary.

Become a fan of understanding business models

Study the business models that exist in each of these professional areas. Search the internet for the business models that need minimum money and time investment. Be a student who is looking for the answers and do not stop till you reach certain actionable next steps. I am always looking for opportunities for passive income because they are the best business models. Make sure your business model has an online selling element as well. Internet is a 24*7 marketplace that is open all 365 days of the year. Understand the business models and do not let your artistic mind set destroy your commercial success.

Follow the role models

Spot the champions and outliers and make them your role models. Learn from them and you will soon leave the village of the average. See how they are creating and managing communities of people. The world is full of people who can teach you how to do business and get rich. Select the right role models and follow their teachings. How
they went from a zero to a million dollar business.

Develop rituals around your goal

I have full time profession, yet on every weekend I set aside three to four hours just to write. It has been ten years now and with God’s grace and reader’s kindness, I have authored five books and completed two more that shall soon be released. I do not go to many parties and keep my lifestyle very simple. My learning ritual is simple on
weekends and holidays, I read books and listen to educational tapes to learn new things. I usually pick up a theme or a subject then write on that subject for two years, and at the end of two years I end up with a completed manuscript which then becomes a book.

Take your product to the market

Be willing to get criticised and you can only do that by taking your product to the market. Let the market judge you and take feedback. The books I wrote got me a lot of monetary benefits in the form of signing events and speaking
engagements. Always develop a commercial offering and then take it to the market. It does not matter if it is a product or a service but it should be something people can buy. Market is ruthless and the consumers that buy your product give you an honest feedback. Create a product or a service prototype and study the entire value chain. Value chain simply means the chain that shows how your offering reaches the consumers and how the money reaches
your bank account?

Never give up completely, learn from the feedback

I am passionate about writing on the topic of success psychology and now with five books on my resume I get acceptance and appreciation from the readers. However, let me tell you that it was not always the case. For about two year, I use to write blogs and get criticised by the readers on social media. Yet, the criticism did not stop me from becoming a published author. The first motivational speech I gave was really very boring, but I am glad I did not let it become my last speech.

Develop and unlimited runway model

You already have a full time job, so your business does not have to earn you money from day one. However, it is also important that your part-time business does not start eating into your savings. Minimize your operating expenses till
your idea becomes self-sustaining. No need for a fancy office, or multiple employees from day one. You can grow organically and without external funding especially of your business in not a high capital intensive business. As a thumb rule you can deploy 20 per cent of your salary savings into your business every month as founder’s capital. This will show your commitment and at the same time drive you to generate cash flows soon.

All the money you make from your part time business keep 20 per cent of yourself and reinvest 80 per cent in your business growth. If your expenses are low, then someday your business will eventually take off. Be smart and implement the feedback market is giving you. The above principle helped me create multiple and passive streams of income. In addition to money, I have received a lot of creative satisfaction in life and that is what truly matters. Making money while doing what you love to do is the epitome of professional success.

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