In 2007 & 2008, the nation experienced one of the worse financial crises since the Great Depression. The housing market burst leaving many families having to abandon their homes due to being upside down in their mortgage. This, in turn, created a ripple effect—loss of jobs, increased credit card debt, poor credit scores, and an overall global meltdown.
Since then, thankfully, the economy has bounced back, but it allowed us to see the need to have our finances in order. Emergencies will come that will be completely out of our control, but if we plan for it, we can lessen the blow. Planning for it, however, cannot only include creating a budget. It must also include ways to bring additional income into our households. The days of depending solely on our 9-5 are gone (which we saw during the housing bubble). So, here are four reasons why EVERYONE must incorporate a side hustle into their financial dynamics.
To save for a rainy day.
According to an article in Forbes, 35% of Americans have less than $1,000 saved for an emergency and 34% have nothing saved at all (Forbes Article). Listen, the rain will come! The car will break down! An unexpected trip to the Emergency Room will occur, therefore, we have to plan for it. Having side hustle (or two) allows us to quickly save that $1,000 (and more) without having to determine which bill will not pay, so we can cover the cost of the “rain”.
To pay off debt.
American households have an average of $130,922 of debt with the average credit card debt being over $15,000. Let’s be honest, most of the debt we incur is not just loans we created to further our education. A significant amount of debt can be contributed to consumption. We had to go out to eat with our friends; there was a sale at Macy’s and our coupon was about to expire; we paid off our car, so now it’s time for a new car. Grant it, Americans, particularly African Americans are earning more money than they ever before; as a result, instead of building wealth, many of us are buying more stuff. Remember, wealth is not measured by how much you earn (your income); wealth measured by how much you are worth (assets vs. liabilities OR what you own vs what you owe); therefore, it is imperative to eliminate our liabilities!
To have more than one stream of income.
According to an article in Boston Globe, only about five percent (5%) of Americans have a second way of earning income outside of their primary job (Boston Globe Article), but the number one reason most millionaires say they have financial success is primarily due to multiple streams of income. Why? If one source of income diminishes (i.e. you are fired from a job), all is well because you have a side hustle (or two) in place to keep the bills paid. The Bible even speaks on it in Ecclesiastes 11:6 “Do your sowing in the morning and in the evening, too. You never know whether it will all grow well or whether one sowing will do better than the other.” Having multiple streams of income will account for the lack of one stream drying up. Remember, there were four streams that flowed into the Garden of Eden! Make sure you have more than one!
It is easy to give when we have more than enough, but when we are broke…Not So Much! Having a side hustle allows us to bring more income into our household to use, not just for saving, or paying off debt or just to make more money, but to help someone else. It shows our gratitude to God and allows us to become selfless, instead of selfish. It helps us focus less on ourselves and our problems and more on serving others. Plus, it opens up more room for us to receive. So, in all “thine getting”, do not forget to give!
So, what can you use as income for a side hustle? Use Your Gifts! We all have at least one. And God did not give it to us just to bury, like the “lazy servant” did in Matthew 25:18. He gave it to us so we can multiply it, like the two “good and faithful servants” did in verses 20-23. Use your gifts as a tool to earn extra income, to give, to save, and as a way to build wealth. Because let’s be honest, it DOES rain in “Sunny California” (and everywhere else). So when the rain comes, let’s be prepared!
Check out this blog to give you ideas on ways to earn additional income (Click Here).