XI. How to Avoid the Side Hustle Burnout
Working full-time can be hard and stressful enough. Working on a side hustle can take your stress levels to the next level. No matter how passionate you are about your side hustle, even if it’s your favorite thing to do in the world, there will come a time when you’ll start feeling burnt out. So, how can you avoid the side hustle burnout? Here are a few ideas:
Delegate or outsource
You don’t have to be a one-person business forever. Sure, being hands-on with your company is excellent, but you’ve only got one body. And that body still has a full-time job to attend to.
When you start feeling the heat, and you feel like the walls are closing in around you, then perhaps it’s high time you delegate or outsource some of the less critical tasks in your side hustle.
Of course, finding someone to help you out will mean investing both time and money on them. You’ll spend time training them and getting them up to speed on your needs, and you’ll be paying them for their time.
The question would be, should you give all your trade secrets away? Do you tell them everything about your business, the ins, and outs? You probably can if you trust your contractor or employee enough, but for the most part, it’s probably better not to.
Stop comparing yourself to others
No matter how hard you try, someone else will always be more successful, more attractive, more talented, more popular, etc. than you. If you’re using your side hustle as a means to compete with someone else, then you’re never going to win.
For instance, let’s say you have a childhood friend who somehow managed to rise through the ranks and now owns a million-dollar home and drives nice cars. You want to be as successful as your friend.
So, you start a side hustle where you hope to become a millionaire eventually. You do everything you can to succeed. But 5 years later, you’re nowhere near your friend’s socioeconomic class. Maybe you now drive a nice car, but you still live in the same house. You’ve done everything, and you’re still a few million dollars poorer than your friend. You become disillusioned, you become depressed, and eventually, you give up.
Instead of being jealous of your friend’s success, how about you focus on how far you’ve come? For example, let’s say that in the 5 years you’ve worked on your side hustle, your income has more than doubled or tripled, your quality of life has improved, and you’re now in a position to leave your day job for good.
This is why you need to be mindful and thankful of what you do have. Comparing yourself to others is one quick way to burn yourself out, so don’t do it. Learn to appreciate yourself and your accomplishments, no matter how small they may seem to you right now.
Set reasonable deadlines
One of the quickest ways to side hustle burnout is to set unreasonable deadlines for yourself. With your side hustle, you’re your own boss. You need to work hard, but you also need to work smart if you want your side hustle to last more than a week.
Don’t take more work than you can afford to handle. Or else you’ll be forced to say “yes” to deadlines that are literally going to drive you crazy. You may need the money, but it doesn’t mean you’re going to kill yourself for it.
If you’ve got a couple of clients offering you a lot of money in exchange for doing some urgent work over the weekend, then you may need to turn down one, or perhaps both.
You can try to negotiate the deadline, and maybe one of them will agree to move their deadline to a later date. There’s no harm in trying, right? However, if you really need to, then don’t be afraid just to say “no.”
Take breaks and vacations
Can you imagine how tired you must feel if you worked for 12 months straight without taking a single day off? Sure, you may get a day or couple days off at your day job, but technically you’re still working on your side hustle. So, you’re not really “off,” you’re just doing something else. Still busy, still hustling.
When you’re just starting your side hustle, there may be stretches where you’ll work for weeks at a time without taking a break. But as soon as you’re able to, as soon as you finish your first project, you should reward yourself by taking a short break.
You don’t need to buy a plane ticket to some exotic location abroad (though you could if you really wanted to). You can just chill at your house for an entire day without checking your emails or thinking about your day job or your side hustle. Just enjoy your “me time.”
Every time you achieve a significant milestone, treat yourself to something nice. Get a body massage or buy yourself that cute bag or jacket you’ve been thinking of buying for months now!
Variety is the spice of life
If you become stuck doing the same things over and over again, you’re going to get bored eventually. If you want to find out how you can regain your excitement for both your day job and your side hustle, then you need to do something different.
You can’t probably do much about your job, but as for your side hustle, maybe instead of designing some graphics this week, you may want to do a different side job instead.
How about you try dog walking or babysitting? Or maybe go drive an Uber for a few hours? Do something you don’t usually do, something that will bring you loads of fun!
You don’t even need to switch up your side hustle. You can go hike up in the mountains or drive to the beach or go clubbing at night. This just may give you the boost you need to amp up your motivation at work and at your side hustle!