How to fit a side gig into your schedule

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Have you heard of the gig economy?  The term “gig economy” generally refers to a workforce that includes short-term employment, contractual jobs, freelancing, and independent contractors. Essentially, it consists of opportunities to bring in additional wages. Did you know during the pandemic the number of people exploring side gigs more than doubled? Most people think they don’t have time for it. So we’re going to look at why to start a side gig, and how to fit a side gig into your schedule. 

Maybe you are a part of the number that jumped into the gig economy in the past few years. Perhaps you are considering a side gig. In this article, we will review why more and more people are starting side gigs. Then we will provide 5 suggestions shared by top performers on how they work their side gig while still working a full-time job.

Why start a side gig?

There are many reasons people may start a side gig. Here are the top 3 reasons we hear.

  1. The number one reason people start a side gig is to add income. They may want to save for something special (a dream trip, kids’ activities, a new car, etc). Or perhaps their regular job may not be covering all of their daily expenses. Whatever the motivator is, income is a top reason many start a side job.
  2. Besides additional income, diversifying income streams is another top reason someone may start a side gig. I am sure you have heard the saying “Don’t put all your eggs in one basket.” By having multiple streams of income, you lessen the risk of being in financial danger if something falls through with an income source. For instance, different industries and jobs will be affected differently by different market conditions. Having multiple streams of income is always a good safety net.
  3. Another reason people often turn to a side gig is to have a passion project outside of their regular job. I see this with a lot of people who work jobs that they are not passionate about. Oftentimes they are looking for more creativity and flexibility too. Frequently, people will turn to a side gig that allows them to use skill sets they do not get to use day to day.

What is your reason? Now let us explore how we work in a side gig.

How to work a side gig into an already busy schedule

Time is a resource. We all have the same amount of time in our days. The secret to success is filling it with what is important to us. If you have goals you want to hit, it is important to prioritize the tasks needed to hit those goals in your side gig. Here are some suggestions on how to work in activities for a side gig, while still maintaining a full-time job.

  1. Consistency is key. Do something for your business every day. And if you cannot designate pockets throughout the day to work your side gig, I suggest setting up a consistent time in your weekly calendar to work. For example, you may not be able to work on your business some days due to other obligations. Can you carve out a few hours at night or on weekends for your side gig?
  2. Get up 30 minutes early. I personally always hate this one, because I am not a morning person. But almost every successful person I talk to uses this strategy of carving out 30 minutes of productivity in the morning to work their business. So am I willing to try it? Absolutely!
  3. Use your downtime productively. Instead of scrolling social media after dinner or turning on a show, can you spend 30 minutes at night working your business? Keep laser-focused on your goals, and you will be more motivated to find time to reach them!
  4. The lunch hour is your friend. When I worked full-time, this was always my favorite tip. I would spend my lunch hour running errands so that I had more time at night to work. Or I would use my lunch hour to work my side gig while I ate. Either way, my lunch hour became one of my most productive hours to work my business.
  5. Make calls or do training during your commute. Speaking of downtime, how much time do you spend commuting? I know today more and more people work from home. If you still commute though, use that time to your advantage (safely of course)! Make calls, catch up on training you may have missed, or even listen to podcasts that help you grow or motivate you.

Which of our top 5 tips above are you most excited to try? Is there one you have not thought of yet? We hope this gave you greater insight into why side gigs can be so beneficial and how to work them into your calendar, even with a full-time job.

For some more ideas on how to add income or what side gig might be right for you, check out our blog post on How to Add Income.