Do you resent Instagram stars yet secretly want be one? Do you have too many ideas and do absolutely nothing with them? Do you know this guy that got rich quick and you think you’re better than him (cough cough my brother)? Are you young and hungry but eating the wrong food? You need to SIDE HUSTLE… and maybe trim your waist in the process.
You’re 17 years old and you just applied to ‘commit’ to what you’re going to do for the rest of your life. You’ve just decided that taking out student loans or having your parents pay for four years of your life will ultimately lead to a better life then the current one you have. Basic human instinct is to survive, and in America we’ve taught our cubs that college how you will survive out in the wild.
You’re 20 and you change your major. You’re 20 and you change your major again… but this time to something more broad, like Communications, and convince yourself that in the wild, communication can be applied anywhere and you’ll figure it out. You will figure it out.
(the next 8 years are a blur.)
You’re 28 and you see that everyone on Instagram is ‘following their dreams.’ They’re way too good looking, the food they eat looks bomb, and how is it they were just having a spiritual experience with the indigenous of Bali yesterday and are partying in and with Brooklyn’s finest today. They are living the life you’re supposed to have. You hear about everyone quitting their 9 to 5’s to launch a startup, or to travel the world, or pull a complete shocking career switch like going from finance to fire fighting and you ask yourself “WHAT THE FUCK AM I DOING WITH MY LIFE?”
Everyday you become a little more and more envious of the people you see in pictures and you grow to be resentful of them. You even make huffy puffy remarks like “They all have fake followers. Social media is a lie, in real life no one is as happy as they appear to be. She photoshops her butt and he’s actually an asshole.” You find reasons to justify everything for why you aren’t and why they can.
IS THE UNJOB BULLSHIT?
The thing is, even if she does photoshop her pancake ass and he’s the douche bag of the century, they’re still doing something you aren’t and you want what they have. You’d rather be hated on too. Overnight all these startups popped up and it’s easy to feel discouraged, like you’re to late in the game or just “how?” Or that you’ve already started your career, what you dream isn’t what you went to college for, you need to make money, and maybe in another life.
You can do it in this life, even with student loan debt, even with family dysfunction, even with…
I used to say that people who can create successful businesses or pursue their dreams are privileged with TIME and MONEY.
Time and money is a privilege and if you have it, you’re lucky, but it’s not what’s going to make you do anything. Above time and money, you need shameless love for yourself and most important you need to know WHAT YOU WANT.
Know what you want.
No one knows exactly what they want because we change everyday, but start with what you love or the reoccurring hunger inside of you. Still thinking about that idea from four years ago? It’s okay to not be exact, that’s why the term ‘pivot’ went viral, but ultimately knowing what you want will give you a direction.
I had time and money and did nothing with it because I had no direction. Sure I said “I want” money, to be a leader, and to have my own business, to work in innovation, but that’s all broad bullshit. Every morning I would wake up a little late and either give up because it was already late in the day or attempt one thing, then decide to start over tomorrow. It was a dangerous blackhole and I am still fighting to stay closer to the stars. Years went by and I had all these ideas and skills and hunger and yet it overwhelmed me to a point where I just couldn’t bring myself to do just do it. Once I figured out what I wanted, I started to wake up earlier and earlier and now I cannot wait to wake the fuck up because I woke the fuck up. I don’t want to sleep.
There are three things you need to create your Unjob:
- Vision of what you want
- Commit like you’ve never fucking committed before
- Knowing that you have one life and you better dye trying to get what you want
The reason why I failed miserably for years was that I couldn’t commit. I’d have an idea one day, talk about it and get high off the ‘this will get me rich’ fumes, then come down fast and hard because I couldn’t envision myself committing to it for years.
Only dumbasses think they will hit a home run the first time swinging.
You gotta come out swinging like Rhonda Rousey. She was knocked out in 48 seconds by Amanda Nunes, but hell at least she got knocked out. She may be a retired UFC fighter, but that wasn’t her last fight, her global take over has just begun. She WANTED to win, but who’s to say she didn’t? After her undefeated title loss to Holly Holm, I think she already had moved on with different wants and ultimately that’s why she lost Million Dollar Baby style.
THE SIDE HUSTLE
If you are part of The Last Generation and after, you may or may not have money, but in the grand Mayan scheme of planets turning, YOU HAVE TIME. You can start over at any point in your life, but there is no better time in the history of the economics and technology to be young, hungry, and adaptable. You have nothing to lose when you side hustle.
No young person wants a real job but you need one. Money is almost everything.
There’s that girl band jam,
“You don’t gotta go to work, work, work, but you gotta go to work, work, work.”
Going to work is good.
It gives you a reason to wake up. Having a reason to get out of bed each morning and being depended upon push you to grind, to HUSTLE betch. Don’t quit your 9 to 5 job, even if you have no debt, even if you have a small savings. Keep saving, you’ll need it. Having a job also will give you a sense of self worth if and when your unjob appears to be failing. You are training for that fight, don’t let yourself get out of shape. (Take this advice from someone who has quit more 9 to 5’s than countable. It’s not a good thing to quit even if you convince yourself you’re not quitting.)
What does it mean to Side Hustle?
Whether you’re writing the next 50 Shades of Procrastination, creating a weed candle, developing a teleportation app, or hell strippin-on-poles, you either want to do something or need something more like money. The difference between a side job or second job versus the SIDE HUSTLE is that hustling means you are hitting-the-ground running and something insatious inside of you can’t and won’t settle until you get what you want.
The thing about side hustling is that it’s on the side, you have a backup. Security is nice when you’re a The Last Generation’er / Millennial / Gen-Z’er. We’re all a bit of a hot mess in need of direction. Side hustling allows you to experiment. Because commitment is always an issue, it’s less of a risk to do something on the side.
SIDE HUSTLE CASE STUDY STORY
At 27, my boyfriend dumped me, or his mom dumped me. Regardless, I was dumped and I thought I was going to die; even my friends thought I was going to die. I didn’t have a job or direction, so I frankly had no purpose. I thought maybe if I got a full time job and figured things out he’d pathetically take me back (he didn’t). I went and got a job in the area I went into a fuck-ton of student debt over because hell I had an MFA and I should use it.
I worked in development for a Discovery Channel owned production company. Essentially I created pitches for the lowest of low brow reality TV show ideas. My boss was a super millennial. When I say super, I don’t just mean age. He embodied the state of mind and traits of a real millennial. (He was full of shit, only concerned with celebrities, hated anyone over 30, and thought of short term crash and burn ideas rather than longevity and responsibility.) I started work for him on his 23rd birthday. How he was a 23-year-old executive producer is another story for another time, but he was pretty much a great bullshitter who was at the right place and right time (good for him). He’s since been fired by Discovery, but was side hustling when it happened and remains a mini-millennial-millionaire.
One day he gets an Amazon shipment of a viral card game called Drunk Stupid or Stoned. He wanted to create a TV game show off of this game and therefore needed to get the rights to it. It was difficult to coordinate the two founders’, Trevor Mayer (26) and Noah Mayer (22), schedules for a meeting. Noah was still in college with a typical flakey college student’s schedule and Trevor had a real job.
Their game had already made over six figures and they both still managed to have a full-time life outside of it. They were in college, working, taking TV development meetings, making deals with Amazon, and marketing like a beast.
The funny part of it all is that when I told my cousin about these guys she told me she worked with Trevor. He was an assistant at a hedge fund in Santa Monica. Smart kid to work in finance when you need your shit financed.
They have since created their unjob and Drunk Stupid or Stoned has it’s own office in beautiful sunny Santa Monica, California and it is expanding.
Did Trevor and Noah think, “When I grow up I want to make a card game?” No, I doubt it, but that’s the beauty of the side hustle. They started with an idea related to something they loved – being drunk, stupid, and stoned and made something simple. They first raised 10k on kickstarter, so essentially the only risk they took was the risk of wasting time… Side time. Now they can work on their next idea and the next.
Don’t woulda, shoulda, coulda your life away.
Know what you want. Commit.