Our Side Hustles: What’s Worked and What Hasn’t

I’m going to continue our posts on side hustles by sharing with you a few of the side hustles that my wife and I have engaged in. Hopefully these will give you a few ideas if you’re looking to start one of your own!

Here are the ones that come to mind: Teaching a course, part-time researcher, cryptocurrency mining, and starting a blog (this one!).

Teaching a Course

Photo by rawpixel on UnsplashThis one is a nice little side hustle, especially if you have already developed the curriculum. Nevertheless, this is one that I’m poised to engage in as we speak! My class starts later this month and I am totally psyched to get in there.

The basics of this are that I had reached out to a local college department chair and was put “on the list” for part-time instructors. After some time, I happened to email them and check in if they needed someone for the following term. As luck would have it, they needed to finalize the schedule the following week and were looking for someone! I pitched the course and now here I am, scheduled to engage with 22 bright minds on an academic topic.

The time commitment will be quite large this time as this is my first time teaching the course. But next time I teach it, it should be much less. Overall, my classroom time is 3 hrs/week for 15 weeks (one semester) and the pay is right under $6,000. Not too bad consider some side hustles never pay at all.

Additionally, this should be a nice addition to my CV and potentially expand my horizons if I ever want to go back to academia.

Researcher

My wife, in a bid to try and bolster her CV, wanted to get involved in a research project. This would add gravity to her resume and make her a better candidate if she decided to pursue more training. Additionally, she wanted to look at directing herself to a more academic job down the road and we reasoned this would be a way to get back into the academic fold.

Ultimately, through a friend-of-a-friend-type connection, she got in touch with a PI to do some translational research. Fortunately for us, this PI also had some funds and thus this little side project has now transitioned into a side hustle for her. The money it brings in isn’t substantial, considering she’s worked a considerable amount of hours in the evenings and weekends (she just stayed up until 4 AM the other day to process data). However, it at least has given her a taste for research.

The downside to research? Any scientist will tell you: the work is never done.

There’s always more to research and discover and find. As such, she’s looking forward to getting a paper together and will probably taper down her efforts afterwards, in order to spend more time with the family.

Cryptocurrency Mining

Photo by Andre Francois on UnsplashI’ll admit, I got caught up in the Bitcoin wave of the winter of 2017, and starting building miners. In fact, I have two mining rigs running now. One at a relative’s house (which I packed in our checked luggage when we went there for Christmas) and another at our house.

Overall, we sunk a considerable amount of money into the rigs (to be detailed in a later post), and they haven’t spawned the earnings I had hoped. Clearly other have moved into this space as well, and its become a large arms race.

Oh well, it could have been worse: I had been circulating speculative plans in my mind to ramp up considerably (10’s of thousands of dollars) with office space and everything. Guess I’m glad I never put that together.

On the plus side, it encouraged me to make an LLC, so that was a worthwhile effort.

Blogging

Ah yes, the final hustle for this discussion. I’ve only recently started this blog. I was inspired by the work and results of several other high-income personal finance bloggers. In fact, I thoroughly enjoy their work because it felt familiar to me, since my wife is a physician, that there are some financial needs that aren’t addressed in the general personal finance audience. However, at the same time, I felt a bit separated, since I am the husband of a physician, not the physician directly. And so on one hand I wasn’t quite in the same club as those guys, but I also don’t fit the mold of the doctor’s spouse.

Alas, I thought I’d toss my hat into the ring. I wanted to give a perspective of a doctor’s spouse that’s not just trying to be a trophy spouse. Ultimately, I plan to document the success or failure of this so you can see how it pans out.

What’s your side hustle?

So what’s your side hustle? Are you planning something? Share with us in the comments!

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