• Emma Buryd

I Started My Side Hustle A Year Ago And Here's What I've Learned So Far

In the middle of 2020 and during a pandemic, I decided that I needed a second source of income. And no, I wasn't thinking of a second job.

I decided that whatever this new job is, it must be mine. Later I learned that it was a thing: a side hustle.

So I started my blog, which you are reading right now. But I didn't stay there, I started using Amazon affiliate links, I made my own ebook, and started a Google AdSense campaign.

Medium, my website, Vocal, Ko-fi. They are all sources of income for me. September 13 marked a year that I started with this side hustle, and these are the biggest lessons that this has taught me.

1. You don't gain anything by being a pessimist

I have learned that many times being a pessimist is nothing more than a defense mechanism.

Lately, it's no longer "cool" to feel motivated to start a new project, to create, to feel excited and optimistic. You will meet many people who will treat you like a naive child. As if chasing your dreams was a weakness.

I understand why they do that, but along the way, you realize that it doesn't get you anywhere. You must be convinced that your side hustle will pay off and become a monetizable project.

2. Nobody will understand your project like yourself

This may sound like the Steve Jobs complex, but it is very real. Nobody will have the same hope or see your project in the same way as you.

As much as you try to explain it, and no matter how much they believe in you, your vision is unique. Therefore, even if you join together with other people, no one will work harder than you to make it work.

3. Failure is necessary

This may be the most clichéd phrase in the startup world, but many don't see it correctly.

You can understand that at the beginning you are more than likely to make mistakes, but if you see them not as failures but as steps, you will learn better from them.

Many are like "well that didn't go well. Second try", and they just focus on moving on and leaving everything behind. But if you see failure as something you win and not as a failed attempt, you grow faster.

Try to see it as "that's a way of NOT doing things."

4. Nobody really knows anything

You'll bump into hundreds of experts, gurus, and pros on pretty much everything.

In the beginning, I followed some guy's blog, who claimed to be an SEO content expert. He offered tips, courses, and all kinds of information on how to gain thousands of views on your blog. At the end of the day, I found out that it was just a guy doing his side hustle just like me.

Don't be blinded by supposed masters who cracked the code, since 9 times out of 10 they don't know everything.

5. Don't stick to just one plan

I've always liked this example: Netflix started out as a mail-order movie rental company.

So don't be reluctant to change strategy midway through. Your goals and plan may not be right at the beginning, but you won't know until you've dived up to your neck.

There is nothing wrong with starting over.

What valuable lessons has your side hustle taught you?

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