This Week’s Goal: Build a Portfolio

I had a portfolio a while ago. It was horrible. At least, it was horrible to me. It was – I don’t know – too simple. Too lacking. Too something of what I didn’t want. But I feel I need a portfolio. I feel like I can offer more than I am and I have so much to give and do and that I’m not harnessing my best self in the world out there.

Now, Elle and I have been talking a bit as to what I would call myself title-wise. I wouldn’t limit myself to my job and I do so many odd jobs as it is, it’s hard to neatly fit it in a box and present it to strangers.

Ideally, I want my portfolio to be a digital landscape of my work and potential. And I want it to garner me freelance projects. But finding my scope is a little more challenging than I realize. So, I thought I would display myself on a webpage and see what comes to me in the building process. I’ve already purchased the domain name and email account, so I can at least present a sense of professionalism, when contacted.

Listen, I’m not working this hard for puppies and rainbows. I’m on a mission. And it needs to show.

Working 5 to 9: Keeping Company Among Good Energy

I’m a big advocate for building a tribe. I talk about it as work but I also talk about it among my tribe, ironically enough, because I believe so whole-heartedly in having people in our lives that we vibe with. I think it’s important that we have people who understand us and share our ambitions. This dual lifestyle we live isn’t easy. Juggling everything all the time isn’t fun or delightful. And those that aren’t hustling or don’t have a side gig would simply tell us to stop if we’re so tired, or so overwhelmed, or so confused or whatever else we feel so often. But they don’t understand the “why”.

They see someone doing too much and do they say stop. We see someone doing too little and ask why they haven’t started. And then we have a clash of energies. And we do clash with people who don’t get it. We clash with people who aren’t striving for similar self-rewarding goals. They’re just doing enough to get by. That’s fine for them. But obviously, that’s not fine for us. Which is why we hustle. We grind. We strive. We aim. Yet, we also need to understand it isn’t fine to be around the energy of those that do too little.

I don’t know who said it, but I heard that it’s easier to be influenced to do less and give up than it is to do more and achieve. Probably because most people aren’t big on achieving. A lot of people as they get older stop setting goals. They stop making plans. If you want to achieve anything, you need to keep setting goals. You need to keeping aiming for something. People who just want to get by doing the bare minimum have no goals. They have no direction. And they are worst kind of energy to be around.

At least for high achievers and hustlers. See, we have a reason and a purpose for what we do. So when someone tells us to stop, it’s because they are tired of comparing themselves to us. And if we stop working so hard, were just like them. Executing the bare minimum and accepting less from ourselves.

Ladies, don’t. I don’t care who’s telling you to stop or you’re doing too much. Keep up the hustle. You got your reasons and you have your goals. Just focus on that. And those bad energy people, just gently nudge them away. They’re not ready to see success. And don’t they need to be tearing down yours.

Get Motivated: (Whispers) Did You Finish Your Taxes?

Okay, so maybe I’m a little late asking this question, but I am curious… did you get your taxes done? It’s April 15th and Uncle Sam — who already knows how much you’ve earned last year as well as how money you owe or will be getting back — wants to know did you take the time to tell him again about your earnings. And not risk disturbing the restless giant that is the IRS, I want to make sure you’re on “its” good side as far as timelines.

Listen, I procrastinated too this year. I really dragged my ass when it came to filing my taxes, but once I started I was happy to have gotten it over with. Now, I’ll just wait to for my state return to be deposited in my savings account, which I’ve also nicknamed “Dream Home Fund”. And I’ll wait to see if I’ll get my measly federal return or will William D. Ford of the Department of Education apply it to my stagnant student loan bill.

Exciting things when it comes to taxes.

Point being, I hope you finished filing your taxes. The idea of requesting a an extension doesn’t sound fun. It sounds more like pulling off a band aid really slowly.

“How to Have a Side Gig and Not Get Fired…” (We Got A Problem)

I was reading article from a Rachel Bitte, a contributing writer for The Muse, a website that discusses all things work, employment and getting hired related and she was addressing the legal layout of side hustling. I love reading about side hustling from other perspectives and learning something new. I make time to read every piece of content I come across about about side gigs because I’m really passionate about having side hustles. I live to hustle.

However, I was really upset after reading her article that I couldn’t even finish it in the first read-through. I had to come back to it in a calmer state of mind. Now, I understand that she is discussing the legalities of having or starting a side hustle and making sure people don’t jeopardize their full-time, rent-paying, keeping-the-lights-on job. I get that. But I don’t think she’s well versed in the reasons why people start hustling. She starts off by saying “maybe you love your job”. What the hell? Does she not know that studies have shown that between 75% and 85% of people in the U.S. hate their jobs? Those same people who hate their jobs actively look for other jobs while at their current job. Who is Rachel referring to? She talks about starting a passion project as a side hustle. Logically, I would think that if you love your job it would be in line with your passion. Yes, it’s possible to love more than one thing, but someone who loves their job and is dedicated to the work and the company and the mission of the company — does that sound like someone who’s gonna start a side hustle? For the heck of it? Really?

Doubt it.

Then she goes to talk about speaking with your HR or company representative to make sure you’re not violating any non-compete clauses. That, I understand IF your side hustle is directly related to your work in your full time job. If not, what you do from 5pm to 9am is no one’s business but yours. Telling your boss about your side hustle is the equivalent to tell your employer you get hammered every Wednesday evening. That’s scary, if you do, but that’s none of their business. Just like your side hustle is none their business.

Then Ms. Rachel goes on to having the person confirm with boss or employer that they’re 100% committed to their full time job. NO THEY’RE NOT. People start a side for two main reasons: they need to earn more money that they’re not making at their full time jobs or their full time jobs aren’t completely fulfilling them professionally. That’s it. If you love your job and are getting paid what you feel you are worth, chances are you’re not side hustling. There’s nothing wrong that. But the notion that side hustling is a decision made whimsically and light-heartedly is foolishness. RACHEL, it’s foolishness.

I’ve included the link to the article below. Tell me what you think. Am I being too dramatic? Mind you, I take side hustling seriously.

https://www.themuse.com/advice/4-questions-smart-people-ask-about-side-gigs-so-they-dont-lose-their-jobs?bsft_eid=6abec46b-8319-8468-5d11-0169328ccbd9&utm_campaign=daily_20190410&utm_source=blueshift&utm_medium=email&utm_content=daily_20190410&bsft_clkid=664a865a-59bf-4c4a-88a9-00215d04938a&bsft_uid=e1bf9463-a3f9-498f-b385-8125d04cf9fd&bsft_mid=3de1aae1-5abb-4e94-9bf7-53599c0293b9

A Single Woman’s Guide to Side Hustling

I am over the moon to announce my upcoming book “A Single Woman’s Guide to Side Hustling “. This was a year long project I’ve been working on and I’m excited to be releasing it with the world. Or, you know, a handful of readers. I decided last year to write something for all of my would-be side hustlin’ ladies and now that the project is complete, I cannot wait to share with you.

I get real about my life experiences, people in my life and what I’ve done/do to make my side hustles worth my time. I hope you’re able to purchase a copy. I’ll have an eBook and hard copy version available. And would love to hear your honest feedback once you had a chance to read it.

It’ll be published and available for purchase at the end of April. Yay!

Happy Friday: Happy Where I’m At

It’s finally starting to feel more like spring and less like summer after that crazy winter we had in February. Finally. And as the weather takes shape hopefully rounding off to a normal season, I want to wish my hustlers a Happy Friday. And may you be happy where you’re at.

Wait. I don’t mean to imply that you need to stop hustling and “love the one you’re with”, but rather love where you’ve taken yourself thus far.

I am great at beating myself up and not acknowledging how far I’m come with what I want to do for myself and my life. I always believed that if I didn’t accomplish what I had set out to do, I hadn’t succeeded in life yet.

Ouch. That’s a pretty harsh self reflection of you think about it. Nothing happens overnight and anything worth having will require hard work. So to tell myself that I’m not a success because A, B and C haven’t been conquered is to negate all the work I’ve already put in.

We side hustlers put in A LOT of work and time that most people never see. And it matters. The time we take to invest, to market, the pitch, to follow-up, to meet up and to grind all matters. Our hustle matters. It’s part of our successful journey and our small wins.

So we may not be living in the high rise lofts or mansions homes yet as a result of all our hard work, but we’re getting there. Today, we’re going to be happy where we are because of what we’ve done… so far.

WHEN: You Need to Revisit The Dream

I was off site today for work at the Corrections Department for a luncheon for recently released incarcerated women. And they had a small but powerful group of speakers who really spoke to me although they were intended for the other women. The speakers talked about never giving up and pushing through obstacles. And they also talked about following your passion. That’s when my ears perked up.

I forgot the speaker’s name and I could kick myself for it, but she talked about the importance of finding and following your passion. Find what you love and figure out how to make money from it. And I listened. Not because I don’t know this information, but because I needed to hear it again. I needed to be reminded to follow my passion and be happy in what I do.

But all I know is that I want to be my own boss. I need to work for myself. I’m passionate about that. And I need to revisit that goal and that passion. I need to go back to the drawing board. Nothing is perfect but it can always be improved.

This Week’s Goal: File Taxes

This week, I set a goal that was very mandatory for myself. Filing my taxes. In fact, I’ve already completed this goal as of this past Monday so I’m happy to say that it’s off my list.

However, this time around filing my taxes was a little different as it was the first time I would be claiming my notary business. And to be honest, I procrastinated. Beforehand, I was a simple 1040 or 1040EZ preparer. I would just have to plug in the numbers from my W-4, my 1098-E and thanks to the higher interest I earn with my Ally savings account, 1095-INT. All of these documents made it very easy for to complete my taxes in about 20 minutes or less. But having a part time business (side hustle), I had to add a whole new process to calculating my extra earnings.

I had to record my apartment as overhead and make sure I deducted the right amount of space for my business (300 sq. ft.). I had to calculate the my phone usage as a business expense. And I’m on a family plan. I had go through and all my notarizations for 2018 and the travel expenses (Uber) to conduct my notarizations. Yeah, this year’s taxes was much more tedious. I lot more work than I’ve done in the past.

But I’m glad I got it done before the deadline. And although I could’ve requested an extension, there was no logical reason why I needed to. Other than I had procrastinated so long.

To my fellow side hustlers reporting their income for last year taxes, I know the burden and wish you much success in getting it done.

Working 5 to 9: The Important Things

I met up with a friend of mine from the old job this past Monday to catch up on everything. We hadn’t seen each other since January of this year. And to add a little nostalgia to our get -together that evening, we had dinner at one of out favorite ramen places in K-Town.

So we gabbed and talked and shared and laughed the night away, but as women typically do, we started talking about some of the more intimate details taking place in our lives. For my friend, it was working on her master’s degree and spending time with her boyfriend. For me, it was finding time to spend with people. And as we were talking about how we went about these important things, she remembered that how I hustling all the time and wanted to know if I still had all these “side things” going on.

But, of course! Her next question was as to how? On paper, it does seem like a lot is going on with me: new full time job, part time business, marketing the part time biz, side gigs in marketing in general, this blog and a book I just recently finished writing. In reality, I don’t work on all of this every day. That would be exhausting and almost impossible. I chop of my tasks through out the week so they are more manageable for me.

I schedule myself to write twice a week. I only perform a notarization when called. Usually, I create my marketing content on those occasions. I work five days a week at my job. I’ve been taking on other gigs from repeat clients or referrals only this year. And all this maneuvering around allows to do one the important things. Spend time with the people who matter to me.

I think it’s very important to have a life even when you’re side hustling. And when I say have a life, I don’t mean go to the movies or hanging out at bars. I mean making time for people. Keeping up with your connections. Checking in on people. Spending time people. At the end of the day, that’s the most important thing.