3 Things You Can Do Right Now to Diversify Your Income

If your goal is to be financially independent, you should diversify your income. Making a living from just one 9 to 5 is risky. Jobs aren’t as secure as they used to be so having different income streams is strategic. Whether it’s to increase your savings, pay off debt or achieve other financial goals, multiple revenue streams create a safety net. Who doesn’t like a little extra cash on top of their steady paycheck?
Once you identify your services, you’re ready to diversify your income. There’s this common misconception that you just sit back and passively earn after setting up these different income streams. In truth, nothing about making money on the side is passive. Whether you have a side hustle or do freelance work, you have to constantly perfect your craft and market yourself for more opportunities.

I started freelancing a few months ago and I already made around $1,200 from side gigs . I am still figuring out how to strategically market myself and grow my client base. But here are 3 ways that have worked for me so far:

Post an ad on Craigslist

I know the thought of Craigslist makes a lot of people cringe – and that’s understandable – but believe me, it works! Just like any other marketplace, you’re likely to come across scammers but you’ll also also meet well-meaning people.

You don’t get charged to post if you’re promoting a service, but there’s a limit on the number of ads you can have running. Each ad runs for seven days, but you can renew them as many times as you’d like. Below is an example of an ad that converted into two clients for me:

Diversify Your Income - Post an Ad on Craigslist

I was surprised by the number of inquiries I received from this ad, but things worked out with about 20% of people who responded. You shouldn’t place all your hopes on this one method, but it is a legitimate way to diversify your income.

It sounds easy, but in reality, finding clients takes time. You might have to renew your ads a few times before people start showing interest, but as long as you’re consistent, the opportunities will find their way to you. Whether you respond to an ad or publish one, Craigslist remains a legitimate way to find work and diversify your income.

Join a Facebook group

Marck Zuckeberg is genius for allowing users to create groups on Facebook. These specific niches can answer all your questions and connect you with a supportive network of like-minded professionals. When you join a Facebook group, be sure to actively participate and add value. Administrators go as far as removing spammers from their group so don’t become one of them.

I recently landed a writing gig by responding to a post in one of the groups. A startup was looking to pay contributors and I reached out to the founders directly using the email in the announcement. I’ve been working with them for a month and it’s turning into a reliable income stream.

You may not diversify your income from simply joining a Facebook group, but if you become an active member, it can put you in touch with prospective clients.

These are some groups I’m actively involved in:

Diversify Your Income - Facebook Groups

If you have some recommendations or would like to find out about more groups, please let me know in the comments!

Send a warm outreach email

Sometimes, landing gigs is a matter of asking. You’ll rarely find opportunities by passively waiting so don’t hesitate to reach out directly to the people who can offer them to you.

No one likes a generic message so make sure you personalize your pitch. Figure out why you’d like to work for that person or company and determine how you can help them meet their goals. Research some common grounds (maybe you went to the same high school or you have some mutual friends) and craft your email around that. If you don’t have anything in common, just express your interest and articulate what you can contribute to them.

Here’s an email I wrote for my graphic designer friend that got her an interview:

Hi X,

I’m a huge fan of your brand and I’ve been an email subscriber for over a year. You recently announced that you’re looking for a freelance graphic designer and I wanted to express my interest in being considered.

I have 3 years of experience designing logos and other marketing materials for small business owners and I am looking to learn from a more established brand. You can find my website here: _ 

I’d love to chat more. I hope to hear from you soon.

Cheers,

Y

Be clear and concise. Make it easy for them to say yes or no.

Related: 5 Steps to Diversifying Your Income and Making More Money

How do you diversify your income? Let me know in the comments!

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3 Common Naysayers to Ignore When Doing What You Love

Going against the grain, whether it’s dropping out of college to start a business or creatively carving your own path, almost always causes people to raise their eyebrows. Whenever you step out of the conventional norm, you will often face naysayers. Some you can ignore like your old high school classmates, but others you will have to address like your family members or friends.

It’s especially hard to ignore negative comments from people close to you. Sure, you have to be open to criticism, but when it’s not constructive, it will interfere with your progress if you let it. Once you decide to embark on your own journey, you will feel discouraged by the smallest things. In order to keep going, you will have to carefully design your environment. This means surrounding yourself with people who can support your growth and letting go of what won’t serve you. Ignoring naysayers is a big part of that.

Here are three naysayers I’ve come across since I started doing what I love – and how to address them:

1. “You don’t even know if this will work.”

From your concerned parents or other close family members.

Well, that’s the point. What’s the fun in knowing endings before beginnings? How can you really grow if you don’t ever take risks? Our comfort zone is cozy, it keeps us grounded. But when we stay in it for long, we don’t challenge ourselves to keep learning. We become complacent and give in to stagnancy.

Your life is the ultimate experiment. You figure out the answers as you go. The more you try new things, the more you find out about yourself and the closer you get to the truth. As Mark Zuckerberg said, “The biggest risk is not taking any risk. In a world that’s changing really quickly, the only strategy that is guaranteed to fail is not taking risks.”

2. “Wait until you have the resources to make it happen.”

From your close friends.

Maybe you don’t have an established network or a financial safety net, but you shouldn’t wait for these things to come to you. Ever heard of entrepreneurs who built their fortunes from scratch? Oprah Winfrey grew up in extreme poverty. JK Rowling was a broke single mother before creating Harry Potter. Steve Jobs started the largest technology company in his parents’ garage. I can go on about the many people who didn’t let a lack of financial resources interfere with the realization of their lifelong dream.

While everyone’s journey is different, we all have the ability to create our own opportunities. It’s the road less traveled because we tend to wait for things to happen to us, but it leads to the desired outcome. Trust your vision and get out there! No one will care unless you’re willing to put in the work.

3. “It’ll be a waste of time if you fail.”

From your skeptical colleague.

The fear of failure is so powerful it can paralyze someone into inaction if they let it. This has to do with the way we perceive failure. What is failure? Is it not getting a specific result or the fact that you took a chance and became more self-aware? Can one really lose if they gain  new knowledge from each adventure?

No time is ever wasted on things you do with intention. Every new pursuit is helping you build your character. Whether or not you achieved your goal, you developed your skills, grew your network and added to your collection of experiences. How can that be considered a failure? There is always a silver lining. The sooner you realize something isn’t meant for you, the better you can apply your experience to the next endeavor and move on. Remember your thoughts have a direct impact on your actions. If you choose to think negatively about everything that happens to you, you will not show up for the work it takes to improve your situation. Learn how to roll with the punches, and above all, keep going (growing).

Achieving your goals starts with building a strong support system. You have to be mindful of the people you surround yourself with and the things you absorb. Whether you like it or not, you consume what’s around you. Be more intentional about it.

Related: TELL ME HOW YOU SPEND YOUR DAYS AND I’LL TELL YOU WHO YOU’LL BECOME

Tell Me How You Spend Your Days and I’ll Tell You Who You’ll Become

In a world where following a straight line is encouraged, carving your own path is unconventional. If you aren’t satisfied with where you are in life, take it upon yourself to change it. Don’t passively wait for people to hand you opportunities. The road to doing what you love is rocky. It’s lonely and there’s an obstacle at almost every corner.

 

How to Cope With a Job You Hate

We’ve all been there. We hate our job, but we need money. How to cope with a job you hate, but that pays the bills? Is that even possible?

My worst job so far has been a marketing internship at an accounting firm. I was getting paid $18/hour to stand by a printer all day and make folders. I knew I was overqualified, but I needed to pay off my credit card and save. That only lasted for a month and I remember feeling so relieved when I walked out of the building.

This experience taught me what it’s like to make sacrifices when you need money. I welcomed every Monday like:

how to cope with a job you hate

If you repeatedly find yourself in this situation, you’re not alone. Studies show that nearly 71% of millennials aren’t satisfied with their job and will keep looking until they find the right opportunity. I’ve been one of them.

We all dream of having a job that makes us look forward to Monday. But life happens and sometimes, we have to make choices that solve our short-term problems. Maybe you have to take care of your family or pay your student loans. Whatever the case may be, you sometimes have to do things you don’t enjoy for money – that usually means having jobs you hate.

Many factors contribute to job satisfaction. Beyond your responsibilities and compensation, your colleagues, work environment and growth opportunities are also important. Here’s how to cope with a job you hate, but need to pay your bills:

Find something to look forward to every day

how to cope with a job you hate

When I was at the accounting firm, I’d make plans to catch up with friends over lunch or go to networking events. I’d also get excited to watch House of Cards during my lunch break. These were small moments that made a big difference in my overall attitude. One would see me smile thinking it was for work when it was really about that new restaurant I’d go try out with my friend after.

Create your “yay” moment in each day. When you’re excited about something, you feel more energetic and it makes the workday bearable.

Exercise in the morning

Morning stretch

Even if the first thing you do when you wake up is check your social media profiles, stretch your legs or your upper body while you’re at it.A simple 5-10 minute routine can be all you need to take on the day.

You’ve probably heard this one before, but I can’t stress how much impact exercise has on your mental and physical state. It not only boosts your energy, but the evidence suggests exercise also helps cope with stress at work. Sure, you can check your inbox as soon as you wake up, but don’t underestimate what these 20 push-ups can do.

Network aggressively

how to cope with a job you hate

Whether you found your dream job or are still looking, you should always be networking. It’s not just a means to an end, but a unique opportunity to stay up-to-date with industry news, build lifetime relationships and continue to grow.

How does networking help you cope with a job you hate? It establishes the connections that will enable you to make your next career move. These are the people you’ll be able to reach out to and comfortably ask for leads or job referrals. Given that as many as 80% of jobs aren’t advertised online, it’s all about networking!

Remember your WHY

how to cope with a job you hate

In an earlier post I wrote, “No time is ever wasted on things you do with intention.” I still stand behind this. Whether your current job is helping you feed your family or save for that vacation in Peru, it serves a purpose.

It’s easy to forget why you’re doing something because of the day-to-day hassles, but keeping an eye on the prize will push you to work harder. It’s also important to remember that everything is temporary. Your life will change dramatically in the next few years (or months even) and you will not be stuck in one place unless you choose to. Think long-term. Stay focused. Defend your WHY.

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