Your twenties are the perfect time to try everything that you can get your hands on. There’s no better time to say “why not?” Most of us have many passions and interests, some of which compete with each other for our time. We may not know exactly where we want to be next year, let alone in 5 years. However, no matter how demanding your job may be, do not get sucked into the trap of doing nothing outside of work and play.
We all need a 3rd gig: a side hustle. We all need that project on the side that (hopefully, but doesn’t need to) rakes in some extra cash. Although this may mean sacrificing a happy hour or two a week, it will be a rewarding experience that you won’t regret.
This one is obvious. Who doesn’t like more money? It’s great to be financially independent, and a side situation can potentially materialize into a full-time job. People in our age group are really good at blowing our money. Festivals featuring our favorite artists are hundreds of dollars a pop, there’s always fun weekend trips we want to take, and the FOMO struggle is real. Whether you are working on an early-stage startup on the side, freelancing, working part-time somewhere, or walking dogs- whatever extra way you’re earning money, you can always use that as part of your fun budget, and you don’t have to feel guilty about your choices since they’re on top of your regular salary anyways.
2. It makes you better at your job.
You can work on a project on the side that strengthens your skill set, and you can bring that into the office the next day. At your day job, you may find that you are working hard and making the most of the skills that you have, leaving little time to concentrated professional development. This is where your side hustle comes in. Work on projects that hone skills that you could use at work, and use your side projects as practice. If you want to learn about crowdsourcing and fundraising, consider volunteering for a nonprofit. If you work in content marketing, keep the creative juices flowing by writing in a personal blog. If you work in design, then learn new techniques and apply them for a friend’s company. All skills are transferable.
3. You will become a master at time management.
Have you ever noticed that you are the most productive when you are the most busy? And those days that you could or could not get something done, you don’t? This is because urgency increases productivity. Whether you’re cramming for an exam or meeting a tight deadline, after the task is completed you may marvel at how quickly you got so much completed. When the hours of your day need to be planned out because you’re juggling a few things, you will become more efficient, productive, and focused.
4. You will have fun experimenting with new ideas and fields.
If you work at a big company, you can explore what it’s like working at a small startup. You may be able to wear more hats and learn what different positions do, and how that relates to what you can bring to the table. If your side project is working on a lifestyle blog, you can network with other bloggers, and hone in-demand skills like content creation, SEO, web design, social media marketing, HTML and CSS. You can become a tutor or a photographer, and you’ll learn independent entrepreneurial skills as well as establish connections. The goal is to keep active and do more.