Is It Time to Turn Your Side Hustle into a Full-Time Business?

By Kayla Sloan

| Photographs By Jelena Danilovic

The cost of living appears to be constantly on the rise. Unfortunately, while the cost of everything else increases, wages and salaries tend to stay the same. In turn, single incomes aren’t always enough to support the common man. Enter the increasingly-popular side hustle.

And whether your side hustle is performing freelance via a special skill or an outlet for your creative side, depending on your business, it no doubt helps you supplement your full-time income.

In some cases, your side hustle can begin to feel as though it takes more of your time than your main position, and in many cases you’re no doubt more passionate about your side gig. After some time, you may begin to ask yourself if your side gig should become your full-time one.

If you’re hoping to make your side hustle full-time, take these signs into consideration before doing so.

Your Income is More than Supplemental

As much as the majority of us would love to support ourselves doing what we love, in most instances it’s simply not realistic. After all, no matter how passionate you are about something, you must in the end support yourself.

To put things into perspective, a side gig is merely a hobby until you gain some sort of monetary benefit from it. And even once you begin earning money, it can take some time before you’re earning any significant income.

That being said, if your side hustle has taken off and you find yourself earning around the same amount or more than in your regular job, then it could be time to go full-time. In the end, you need to ensure that the income you make with your side gig is enough or very close in income to sustain your expenses and lifestyle.

It’s Taking Up All of Your Time

The more your side hustle takes off, the more time it’ll inevitably take. When that happens, you’ll inevitably begin to feel yourself pulled in one too many directions.

Contrary to popular belief, it’s nearly impossible to give 100 percent to too many endeavors, which could cause your day job to take a back seat or become neglected. You no doubt have a supervisor at your full-time position and that neglect won’t go unnoticed for long.

If you find yourself straining for time, it could be time to give your side hustle your full attention, before your juggling draws unwanted attention.

You’re Performing Well as Your Own Boss

Owning your own business is no simple task; there’s a lot more to it than just performing the task you’ve built it around. Furthermore, it’s easy to stay motivated and on-task when you have an outside force — i.e., your boss — hired for the task of ensuring you do your job.

Nonetheless, if you’ve found a steady and sustainable pace for yourself and are able to meet any and all deadlines you’ve set for yourself, then you might be in the position to be your own boss. Because the beautiful part about turning your side hustle full-time is that you ultimately work for yourself.

You’ve Created a Well-Thought-Out Plan

Even the best-laid plans can fall apart, business ones included. Starting and sustaining a business is not for the faint of heart, and in many cases, people fail. Ergo, you shouldn’t quit your day job in favor of your side gig on a whim; it should be much more thought-out than that.

That being said, if you’ve taken the time to create a true business plan, which shows six-month, year, and maybe even five-year, projections, and have begun the process of actually implementing those plans, then you may have the proper tools to fully launch your business.

Your Business is Consistent

For any business, consistency is key. In fact, I’m not sure there’s any business that can survive off a few large commissions per year. Instead, they survive through consistent income they can rely on. Not to mention that it’s a lot less stressful, as well.

Getting the word out and acquiring clients or projects is the hardest part when you’re beginning a side gig, and until you have a steady base or foundation, going full-time might not be feasible. Once you find yourself with a steady flow of work or clients, with the prospect and ability to seek out new ones, it’s then that you can consider flipping your side gig to your main one.

You’re Passionate and Not Afraid of the Unknown

Working for someone else’s company at a 9-5 job is safe, and to a certain extent, predictable. Moreover, the success of the company likely doesn’t rest solely on you, but on an entire group of people.

If you truly want to turn your side businesses into your full-time job, however, you have to be brave enough to step into the unknown just as so many entrepreneurs before you. And, as I mentioned earlier, it should be a decision that you make because you’re sincerely passionate about the job you’re doing. You need to be passionate enough to put in the time and hard work it’ll take to run a business on your own.

The Bottom Line

Making a career switch to go out on your own is always going to be a little scary. Even if your side gig is thriving, stepping away from a reliable full-time position to pursue your own business is full of risk and challenges that can seem quite daunting.

Nonetheless, if you’ve found a side hustle that you’re not only passionate about, but has grown into a career that can actually sustain you, then you’ve no doubt accomplished the dream of many. When it comes down to it, there are certain signs that your side gig is more than a side gig. If you find those signs to be true, it may be time to reconsider your full-time gig.


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