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  • Many people seem to have one, so you are now thinking why not start a side hustle, right?

    You get to keep your day job and boost your income on the side. It is also a great way to turn a hobby into a lucrative sideline.

    There are, however, some barriers you may have to overcome before you start a side hustle.

    Choosing one to begin with

    Simple as it may sound, just deciding on the right one can be challenging.

    Not all hobbies can be converted into money-making machines and not all are created equal. Some will generate less income than others, so you may want to weigh your options.

    It can mean finding a balance between what you are passionate about and how much you are willing to sacrifice in earnings to stick to it.

    You will also need to ensure the side hustle you pick does not conflict with your day job. It is likely not going to be very pleasant if your employer finds out you are working for their competitor.

    More importantly, you probably want to pick a side hustle that you are actually good at. You may really love crocheting, but if that sock you are working on has more than one hole in it, it is unlikely to sell online.

    Beware the myth

    You may have read about how easy it is for someone to earn thousands of dollars each month from their side hustle. But there are expenses that need to go toward upkeeping the side hustle. For example, ride-sharing drivers still have to pay for petrol, insurance, and maintenance or rental. These can eat into your monthly income and commission.

    Finding time out of day job

    If you have a day job that already has you keeping long hours, you will find it difficult to maintain or grow a side hustle.

    It can get more challenging when your day job has irregular hours or operates on shift rotations. This may be especially tricky if it is difficult to make last-minute rescheduling in your side hustle where, for example, you teach yoga in a group class.

    Some side hustles also require quick responses, where a tardy reply can cause a potentially lucrative deal to fall through. The need to answer customer queries swiftly can be all-consuming and you may lose focus on your day job.

    If you are still keen to start a side hustle despite a busy full-time job, consider one that can be easily rescheduled and managed.

    Beware the myth

    "You just need to make time" does not always ring true. We all have 24 hours a day to work with. If your day job takes up 18 hours, and assuming you have a human body that requires sleep, then it is obvious you cannot always simply "make time".

    Keeping it running without losing sleep

    You know you are overstretched if working on your side hustle has you falling asleep at your day job.

    Some side hustles require more of your time to monitor their progress, respond to queries, and make tweaks to improve sales.

    You may want to map out the strategy or timeline that is required to build and maintain the side hustle. Work out how many hours you will need and determine if the number is something that will not have you keeling over from lack of sleep.

    If you want a side hustle that does not require you to slash your sleep time, consider options that can run automatically. For example, Share4you is a copy-trading platform that lets you pick and automatically copy the trading activities of experienced traders known as leaders. You can also pause trading activities anytime you need a quick timeout.

    Beware the myth

    "You can sleep when you have success." The problem here is success can come slower for some side hustles. When it stretches into a years-long timeframe, you may end up losing more than just sleep.

    Deciding if it is worth it

    If you are putting in five hours a day working on your side hustle, only to earn five extra bucks, it is probably time to ask whether it is worth the effort.

    And when it means missing out again on your child's birthday party, you may want to weigh the costs and benefits of maintaining the side hustle.

    It can be difficult to cut your losses when you have invested time and sweat into building up the side hustle. However, it can be equally tough when you realize too late that some sacrifices are not worth it.

    To mitigate such losses, carry out a reassessment or stock-take every six months to ascertain your progress. This will also enable you to make the necessary tweaks to improve the returns from your side hustle.

    Beware the myth

    "The returns will come, just wait." Rather than hang on to something that may or may not come through, decide how much time you will give to build up a side hustle. And if it does not succeed, stick to the timeline and move on to the next option.

    Recognizing when to expand or stem

    There will come a time eventually where you need to decide if it is time to grow or cut.

    Should your side hustle become extremely successful, you may want to turn it into something more permanent. This can involve making the difficult decision to quit your day job and focus exclusively on your side hustle.

    It comes with the risk of leaving something that is stable and moving to something that may fail years or even months down the road.

    It also can be tough to decide when it is time to let go and stem a bleeding side hustle. This will be the case if it involves something you are passionate about and it will be disappointing when it fails to take off.

    It can be helpful to get advice from others who have worked on their own side hustles, whether these proved successful or not. They can help you better navigate your own journey and make the right decision when the time comes.

    Beware the myth

    "You will fail, so do not try." But if you do not give your side hustle a try, how will you know you will fail? So go forth and make it work!

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