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How to start a side hustle and earn extra cash

Updated: Feb 17

Whether you’re trying to just earn some extra cash, working on your passion project or even want to start your own full-time business – here’s how you can do any of those things, starting with a side hustle!

We’re all hustlin’ to make that dough – and we’ve all got our own ways of doing it!


Some of us Squigglers look at a job as just that – a job, which is just a means to an end. Other Squigglers look at their jobs as their passion, something they live and breathe, and absolutely love doing. Whichever Squiggler you are, a job still gives us one thing – money (yes, I’m that shallow #sorrynotsorry).


But when we’re all at the start of our careers, fresh out of uni or college, or maybe we’ve even decided to switch it up a little and change career paths – it can be hard to live that Squiggler lifestyle with just one income. And that’s where a side hustle comes in.


What is a side hustle?

The world isn’t always a fair place, so that YOLO lifestyle we want to live? Might not be covered by a 9-5 job salary, especially when you’re at the start of your career.


A side hustle is a great way to make a little extra money on the side of your day job, and it can be anything you want it to be. You know that camera that’s been lying around at the back of your cupboard that you’ve been meaning to use? Well, make photography your side hustle. Love writing in your spare time but running out of topics to write about? Get paid to write about topics that other people tell you about.


Plus, side hustles aren’t just popular among Squigglers (although most side hustlers are Squigglers). Startups found that almost half the Brits in the country are earning a second income from a side hustle, with the side hustle economy now worth around £346bn! So, get in there, mate – there’s definitely space for growth!


How to start a side hustle?

It’s always the start that’s the hard bit – especially if you’re a perfectionist, eh?

  • Consider what you’re interested in: A side hustle is definitely supposed to be the fun job, so make a list of things you’re passionate about or enjoy doing. Try creating a mind map of all the hobbies you love and see if there are any you’d like to pursue as a side hustle.

  • Consider your skillset: It’s not enough to just love your side hustle – you’ve gotta be good at it too. The best side hustles are those where what you love and what you’re good at overlap – giving you the best of both worlds (Is this whole side hustle thing also reminding you of #throwback Hannah Montana?!)

  • Consider if you’ll need any money to start with: If you’re going to be selling products, you’re going to need a little bit of money to start with (#spendmoneytomakemoney). Or if you’re freelancing, you might need to buy new equipment to begin with!

  • Schedule time to work on your hustle, but don’t forget your day job: As much as you may love your side hustle, don’t forget that your day job pays the bills at the end of the day! Plus, you want to have enough downtime between the two for yourself (#selfcare) so you don’t burnout. Make sure you stay organised and have enough time for all of those elements.


Side hustle ideas – brainstorming time!

Oh there are so many side hustle ideas, and the list can be endless. Starting from being a dog walker to social media manager – anything is possible! Just do your research on it, and don’t limit yourself.


In the meantime, the flatmates and I have brainstormed some ideas for you (don’t hold us to it, we were about four pints down, but I think we’ve nailed them):

  • Freelancing: You can freelance in anything these days! But if you specialise in an area such as design, copywriting, web development or accountancy, you could use freelance websites like People Per Hour or Upwork to get some extra work on the side.

  • Handmade goods: We all know Etsy’s really taken off with personalised gifts and everyone loves a good handmade product. So, if you’re creative and don’t mind getting your hands in the mud (not literally, unless it’s pottery you’re interested in), then see if there are any products you’d like to make like personalised candles, jewellery, etc. And sell ‘em on Etsy!

  • Starting an online store: You could even take your little Etsy store one step further and have your own online store! Amazon and Ebay are great places to start for this.

  • Social media management or blogging: Writing is probably one of the simplest side hustles to pursue – and writers are in demand. All you need is a laptop and a clear headspace, and you’re good to go! Upwork and People Per Hour are still good spots to grab a freelance social media or blogging job.

  • Part-time jobs: Whether that’s with your local charity or just a small part-time job that you enjoy doing, it could earn you a second income. Maybe a florist, or a carpenter – you could pick up a few hours at your local, learn some new skills and meet new people too!

Playing it safe with side hustles too

Now, like I mentioned before, don’t forget your day job!


A side hustle is a great way to earn extra income, but your day job is still priority because it pays your expenses like rent, bills etc. And it’s not great to think about, but what if you can’t work because of a serious illness or injury? You wouldn’t be able to work your day job or your side hustle, and you don’t want to eat into your savings or your emergency fund to keep covering your expenses!


This is where income protection insurance could help you – a financial product that basically replaces a percentage, usually around 50-70% of your income if you can’t work due to illness or accident for as long as you need. And once you’re back to full health, you can go back to hustlin’ day and side. Find out more about income protection insurance here.




Conclusion

The important thing to keep in mind is that it’s not always going to be perfect, and there are lots of lessons to be learnt along the way! Start your side hustle – it may or may not work out, or maybe you find something else you’re more interested in. Or maybe your day job takes off! It’s all trial and error.


We’re still learning here at Flat 15 too, with Anna and her freelance work, Jo and their writing, and Zayne wanting to pursue filmmaking but focusing on his day job. And me of course – account manager by day, financial guru by night!