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Side Hustles Gone Wrong!

June 3, 2014

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It’s blog swap time again! Today, I’m posting over at Debt Busting Chick about One Financial Mistake I didn’t Make and she is posting here to tell you all about her trials and tribulations with side hustles. Take it away DBC!

DBC Guest Post Photo

Once upon a time there was a land called PF Realm and in that land everyone in debt did all that they could to free themselves from the shackles of debt. Only those who side hustled and persevered succeeded in their quest for quick debt freedom but others like the Debt Busting Chick weren’t so lucky…

Guys! Debt Fairytales Just Don’t Exist… Right?!

Dying to be debt free has pushed me to up my income. I’ve read many PF bloggers articles about how they’ve side hustled with hard work and are really successful at it. Whenever one comes up on blog Lovin’ detailing many ways to earn extra income or side hustles – I save it to refer back to later.

I get a rush of enthusiasm and search for their listed opportunities online and always end up back to square one. So what have I tried? The question is… What haven’t I tried? Well let me share them with you….

Side Hustles I’ve Tried & Tested

Cashier – Working the door of a nightclub resulted in me falling asleep on the job. My body’s clock just couldn’t handle those late nights.

Paid surveys – I signed up with several paid survey sites. I ended up getting bored with completing lengthy surveys and getting paid just 8 pence for my time.

Ebay – I tried my hand at buying and selling. I bought several box office hit movies at rock bottom price (well, so I thought) and ended up keeping the DVDs because I wasn’t even breaking even.

Mystery shopping – I signed up with one of the biggest mystery shopping sites and they kept advertising jobs which offered travel expenses and a free meal. Err… Hello! Where’s the money?

Car booty – This I had huge successes with, I was making good money; until I ran out of stuff to sell. Bummer!

Blogging – Tried to start blogging and earn money from my efforts but it’s still something I’m struggling to get my head around.

Marking Papers – It’s that time of year where many children take exams which people are paid good amounts to mark. Unfortunately I didn’t hear back after the long application form I had to fill out.

After trying the many side hustles above, I still went on to try a few more…

Teaching – Just started teaching math and English at Saturday school. It’s well paid, only during term time, and the hours are 9:30am-12:30pm. We’ll see how this goes.

Tuition – After a parent watched my interview lesson, she asked if I could tutor two children for an hour once a week. I set my own price and I’ll also report back on my blog to let you know how this goes.

What have I learned?

That side hustling with a full-time teaching job is no joke. You must make sacrifices and your free time is one of them.

You need sheer determination and you can’t care that your body is fatigued, otherwise you won’t be able to stick it out.

Most PF bloggers that have been side hustling with a full-time job are superheroes with magical powers. On a serious note though, they must be heavily focused on their goals to be able to keep going because it would be hard to stick it out without a goal in mind.

Debt mustn’t be bothering me as much as I thought. I haven’t managed to stick it out at several side hustles which could have really helped me pay off debts much quicker.

Debt Fairytales must exist because I have read many success stories where many have paid off their debts in double time with their side hustle income.

What side hustles have you tried? Did they work out? Did side hustling free you of those debt shackles?

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41 responses to “Side Hustles Gone Wrong!

  1. ahh the elusive side income. I have a good 15-20 ideas. The problem with most of mine is the require some investing and I don’t have the money allocated to do so since all of my pennies are going towards debt. You gotta spend money to make money!

    1. Ugh! I know what you mean. I find lots of good opportunities, but I am not willing to put money towards stating another new venture right now. Maybe after I get a little more cash flow freed up after a few debts are paid off…

    2. Hey Bre, it’s always the way isn’t it. Having to spend money to make money. I’m similar all my money goes to debt too so there’s no room in the budget to invest. I wish I would have thought about this before getting into debt.

  2. “Debt mustn’t be bothering me as much as I thought. I haven’t managed to stick it out at several side hustles which could have really helped me pay off debts much quicker.” I can completely relate to this, and was thinking of writing a post about it. It’s hard to question your own motivation, especially as a PF blogger, but I will not sacrifice my sanity like some do to make the extra money. I know my limits, and I do get stressed a bit easily. I’ve also tried surveys, which don’t seem worth the time, and I agree on the mystery shops – they’re all for free meals (that I’ve seen).

    1. In my area there aren’t many secret shops at all. I actually wouldn’t mind doing one for a free meal, I have a terrible eating out obsessesion and if I can fill it with a free meal from a secret shop then I’m all for it 🙂 The only ones available here are for car shopping… It’d be hard to do them here anyhow as it’s a SMALL town and everyone knows everyone else. The car dealerships would soon be recoginzing that I’m not really after a new car…

      1. I wouldn’t completely mind, except that Charlotte is huge, and I have no clue where the restaurants are. I don’t want to waste money on gas :/. At first, all BestMark had to offer were car service shops, but after a week or two they were offering restaurant shops. I haven’t seen anything else, but I think Sinclair has more of the retail shops. Have you looked into You get paid $10 to review websites. Pretty easy, and only takes 10 minutes or less.

        1. I understand your hesitation, wasting gas sucks! I use BestMark, but nothing there except cars 🙁 I will check out Sinclair and usertesting. Thanks for the heads up!

    2. Some people are very dedicated and do all that they can to pay down their debt. For me I always burn out and give up then I’m back to square one. You’re right your sanity is important, the surveys are way to mind numbing for me. But for a lot of people they work and I respect their hustle.

  3. Pingback: Guest Post: One Financial Mistake I Didn't Make! - Debt Busting Chick
  4. Pingback: Side Hustles Gone Wrong! - Debt Busting Chick
  5. Side hustling is no joke. It is not for everyone. I remember when I was working two jobs, to furnish my new house. I worked 6 days a week. My body and bones were beyond hurting. I had my financial goal posted everywhere, so when I felt like giving up, I just looked at the post and kept on pushing. It was not easy. As soon as I reached my goal, I quit the second job.

    1. I have a side hustle now (sort of). I work a second job on the weekend (usually only Saturday or Sunday that way I still get 1 day “off”). But I hate it! I need more weekend. I think if I had more weekend, I could perform better at my “regular” 8-5 job during the week since I’d be more rested and recouped. I am comtemplating quitting my weekend job…

    2. Hey Lozelle, It is so hard. I plan on quitting as soon as my debt is paid off. I’m currently doing 6 days a week and it’s draining mentally and physically. I’m just always tired. Well done for staying focused and not giving up on your goal.

  6. I hear ya, DBC! I’m glad to hear you say “Most PF bloggers that have been side hustling with a full-time job are superheroes with magical powers.” because I was starting to wonder what everyone was ingesting. I find working in a FT stressful job makes it difficult to be able to do as much as I would like. Who am I kidding? It’s even a challenge to get the house cleaned most weekends! On the positive side, I’ve definitely cut down on working my unpaid overtime on my job since I started blogging and no one seems to have noticed! 😉

    1. Glad no one noticed your lack of “overtime” lately. I’d really like to quit my second job, but since I need the income I’ll keep at it for now and maybe quit after I get some online work going, or once I pay off a couple debts! Having a 2 day weekend every week would really help me get more rest and relaxation time (plus I could actually get my house cleaning and chores done I think) and thus could really help my job performance at my M-F 8-5 job.

    2. It’s good to have a balance, it’s awful working extra hours especially when it’s underpaid because you’re less likely to stick it out.

      I work 6 days a week at the moment and it’s tough. I look forward to Sundays. They are my re cooperation days! I just relax and wait to do it all over again.

  7. I tried some side hustles such as crew member and online seller. I am really thankful that it didn’t gone wrong instead it helps me to pay off my debts. And aside from that, I am very thankful that I have learned from it to become independent and debt free person.

    1. That’s great Hannah! I’m still trying to find an online side hustle that works for me. I’d rather do something online from the comfort of my home than continue with my weekend job…

  8. I’ve tried blogging and spreadsheet consulting. Spreadsheet consulting is a good one because it’s niche and it helped me further develop skills that help me in my full-time career. Blogging is tougher as it’s a crowded area. I will continue to blog, but I want to eventually shift to consulting work for my side hustle.

    1. At least you’ve got your foot in the door with blogging. It really is a hard business to get into and stay on top of. There’s lots of healthy competition to make you work harder. Good luck with your spreadsheet consulting venture!

    1. That’s awesome! I’m currently trying to break into freelance writing/staff writing for blogs right now. It seems tough to get a first gig. I sure hope I can score one soon to get my foot in the door 🙂

  9. Everyone talks about selling your stuff like it’s so easy. I could barely break even on ebay too. Not worth the time and effort.

    1. I haven’t had much luck with Ebay myself, or Craigslist for that matter. But I have had good luck with a garage sale and also with selling on a local “buy/sell/trade” group. I just have to shut my eyes and try not to look at what other people are posting for sale on there… 🙂

    2. I know and it’s soo easy to run out of steam with ebay after the initial buzz. Also you get non paying bidders and file a case against them to get them to pay or to be able to relist your item. HASSLE!

  10. I’ve had a couple side hustles that were fails. I tried working at a retail store where I had a 5-10am shift stocking the shelves, but it was exhausting, and the team leaders were very condescending. I realized I needed side hustle work that was flexible and fit into MY schedule. I do wonder how some people seem to do it all and not collapse from exhaustion. Maybe because I’m 43 and need my full 8? lol! I’ll just keep trying things here and there and see what sticks.

    1. I have a couple extra “jobs” right now, working a shift on the weekend at a retail store and cleaning the office building in which I work, plus I do Mary Kay. It is exhausting! I don’t have much time at home with my pets or with my friends and family. When I do have an evening or weekend day off I don’t want to be productive and clean my house or do laundry, I just want to do NOTHING! Which isn’t good. I am looking to quit some of these side hustles and get a new one with more flexibility, which is why I’m trying to break into freelance/staff writing.

    2. Hey, I agree, it’s all about trial and error with side hustling. What works for one person might not work for the other because as you say ‘it has to fit into your schedule’. I can imagine you were exhausted by those shifts, I’m still asleep at 5am.

  11. Great post DBC – as you’ve found out, side hustles aren’t for everyone. Hopefully, you’re able to continue and persevere with the teaching/tuition side hustles.

    I make a few quid doing the paid surveys you mentioned – they’re not very interesting after a while but keep plugging away and the pennies add up.

    If you shop online (especially for things you have to buy, such as car/home insurance), make sure you make use of cashback sites like TopCashback or Quidco as the cashback payout can be up to £42 per new policy.

    1. Hey Weenie, great tips! I’ve never used those sites before, they sound perfect.

      You’re right with the surveys, the pennies do add up. As with a anything you keep plugging away at I suppose.

      I’m still going with the teaching and tuition surprisingly. I want to wait until I’ve done at least a month before I review it in a future post.

      Thanks for stopping by.

  12. I’ve never been in debt ( aside from a car loan,) but have had to hustle at certain periods of my life just to get by. Tutoring has always brought in good money while I’m doing it. Stick with the blog thing! It takes time for the majority of us. 🙂

    1. Hustling to get by or hustling to pay off debt, either way it’s still hustling and it’s a lot of work! Tutoring is something I haven’t personally looked into, but maybe I will. My community, though small, does have a community college that allows community members to sign up as tutors for the college students. Maybe I can look into that. 🙂

  13. I find that doing paid surveys is easy but can be repetitive and boring. Still, if you plug away at it (I just try to do at least one a day), the pennies do add up.

    I used to sell stuff successfully on ebay, mostly to declutter, as opposed to buying cheap and selling to make a profit. A big clear out at home is overdue, so I hope to make an effort to sell things rather than just place them in the charity bag.

    1. Selling stuff is a great way to make some extra $$, until you run out of stuff to sell. It’s great, but not sustainable since you can only sell so much. Glad to hear you will be working on decluttering!

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