Side Hustle Turned Big Business

How does your side hustle end up earning you more money than your corporate job, but provide all the joy and flexibility of working for yourself? It doesn’t happen overnight. In fact, it can kind of sneak up on you.

You’ve spent a lot of time in the corporate world, wondering and dreaming about how to make it out alive, or at least make it until you no longer have to work for someone else. Fitness has always been your passion and you find yourself getting asked a lot of questions from your peers about “how to”. Eventually, you decide, hey, maybe I could start charging for my advice. So, you begin to pull together programming for nutrition coaching. Things are going great when suddenly, you’re faced with the difficult task of continuing to run crazy hours working full time and running your “side hustle” at the same time. You have to make a decision, do I stick with the corporate world with a steady reliable paycheck and benefits, or do I go full on risk taker and dive into my own online coaching platform?

The challenges of being an entrepreneur

You decide to go for it, you find yourself making more and more money every month, your clients are doing well, testimonials are coming in and your “product” seems to be flying off the shelves. Since quitting the corporate world, things have been going rather well. The only problem is, the more money you make, the more expenses you also have. It seems as though you’re never going to catch up and you’re just going to continue running on this never-ending hamster wheel … and holy shit, what if multiple customers fall off at the same time, leaving your earnings much lower than your rising expenses? Now that you’re no longer working on someone else’s watch, it’s great, but you realize that being an entrepreneur has a whole set of its own challenges.

Being your own boss means you have no one to tell you what to do, but you also have no structure within your newly formed business. While working from home, a coffee shop, or hell, even the beach, seems like a great idea, there’s no time to even think about where to work from. You’re way too busy just staying above water! Lack of structure has you backed into a corner, and finally you realize you either need an assistant that you know would be another whole expense, OR your expenses need to slow down so you can slow down … but, that’s not why you started the whole business for self-thing. So, now what the hell?

Side hustle vs. big business

This is when fear, doubt and questions begin to settle in, such as “what the hell was I thinking”, “why did I ever think I was qualified to be a coach and an entrepreneur”, or “maybe I’m going to have to go back to the corporate world again”. There are so many things “they” don’t teach you when becoming an entrepreneur, how are you expected to figure out all of this by yourself?

I’m here to tell you that you are not alone. In fact, most entrepreneurs are just like you, wondering and questioning themselves to the point they almost want to quit. We see it all the time. How are you supposed to catch up from the lack of planning for increasing expenses, and heaven forbid, tax season?

Financial services to help you succeed

Sure, you can read all the books about investing and being smart with your money. You can hire an accountant, financial advisor, or your local insurance sales person, but are they really the answer you’re looking for? I think not and here’s why.

Your accountant is going to help you with tax planning and tell you what you can or can’t write off. Your financial advisor or insurance agent is going to help you put your already big stack of money to work, and those books you’re reading are going to give you some great insight into what you “should” be doing. But, are any of these going to hold you accountable for what you WILL actually do? Are they going to help guide you on whether or not to hire an employee, get an office space, or allocate a certain portion of your budget for various expenses? Nope! 

3 steps to help you get your finances on track:

1. Realization:

Start with getting to the realization of where you’re at financially. Sit down and go through your expenses. You can do this by using various different software programs, QuickBooks is probably the most common. Figuring out where all of your money is going is the best place to start.

2. Separation of business and personal expenses:

Separating business expenses from personal expenses is essential to actually starting to become a real profitable business, instead of “just” being a side hustle. If you’re not separating these, you have to start drawing the line there. Create a business account for all of your business income to be placed into. Once that money is in there, then you can begin allocating to various accounts, including paying yourself.

3. Allocation of funds … In other words, budgeting:

This is where the fun begins. Allocating portions of money to various activities means setting up a budget for yourself AND your business. This will not only set you up for success, but also give you the feeling of reassurance that you have money for unexpected things that may arise. Start by paying yourself a salary from your business account that you just set up. Use the money that you’ve paid yourself to begin allocating funds to a budget. The easiest way to start doing this is by making yourself a list; how much do you spend on groceries, beauty, clothing, etc. Make a list of all of the things you spend money on and give yourself a reasonable amount to allocate your monthly funds to. Once that money is gone, it is gone.

Transitioning from side hustle to big business is worth it!

Being an entrepreneur can have so many rewards. However, it can also come with a lot of headaches, especially financially when you don’t have a set amount coming in each month to pay your bills and going out each month for taxes. Follow these simple tips along your journey, and you won’t ever have to worry if you can pay the bills, or worse, go back to the grind of the corporate world again!