It’s Independence Day here in the United States. Flags are waving, parades are happening and fireworks will be lighting up the night sky later tonight. It’s a big deal around here.
Heck, even I’m enjoying a nice, long weekend – rare for this ole workaholic. Since I quit my day job so many years ago, I’ve been in constant grinder mode.
Don’t get me wrong – I love it. I’ve also been lucky enough to have plenty of work to keep me busy all these years.
Aspiring mystical entrepreneurs often ask me: when should I go independent, Theresa? When is the smartest time to quit my day job and make my side hustle a full time gig?
My answer: it depends.
If you are making enough money from your side job to easily pay your bills, it might be time.
If you have enough money set aside for living expenses for a year, you can give it a go.
If you have someone covering your ass and willing to hold down the financial fort, it can work (PS some of the big gurus who brag about their luxe lives and promise you “six figure incomes” might have partners who pay the bills – dig a little and you might be surprised.).
If you have the stomach for an unstable income and are ready to bust your ass, you might be able to make it work – even without the security of money in the bank or a patron who pays your bills. That’s what I did. In my case, it worked. I was willing to kick ass right out of the gate. But this is NOT an easy route. Those lean years were scary AF at times. This is not the path for the squeamish – or for anyone who has loved ones that depend on a stable income.
Look, it can be exciting to think about ditching your day job and just doing your own thing – but if it jeopardizes your family’s security or puts you in a deep financial hole? Not worth it.
In fact, for some, it might be wiser to keep that side hustle – as a side hustle. For example, if your current job pays excellent health benefits, you may find that getting those benefits on your own is pretty expensive. Trust me, my health insurance cuts a fat little chunk into my profits. If you’re not ready to make that payment every month, you are better off staying at your job.
Bummer? Not at all. Too many “biz experts” are advising people to quit their job and go after their dream – even “before you’re ready.” This is foolish and irresponsible. I believe you should definitely pursue your entrepreneur goals but in a way that keeps you safe. If that means waiting a bit (or never going full time), don’t feel bad about that. Instead, work towards your goal in a way that makes sense for you – and doesn’t create a hardship. Be smart – and patient.
Never quit on your dream – but don’t quit your day job if it makes your dream a nightmare.
© Theresa Reed | The Tarot Lady 2016
Also read this oldie but goodie – Side business shame: let it go.