Do you need to earn a few extra bucks to help pay down debt or build up your emergency account? Are you saving up for that once-in-a-lifetime vacation and want to get there faster? Most everyone wants to earn a second income, but few of us want a second job!
There are some simple ways to earn extra money without taking on another job or being away from the children even more than your are already. By evaluating your "strengths", you should be able to zero in on one or more sources of extra income.
Here area few questions to help you get started:
Let's look at a few examples:
- What exactly are your "strengths"?
- What do you really excel at?
- What do your friends, family, and coworkers compliment you about, over and over?
- Are you a perfectionist in certain things?
- What things do others tease you about, or find irritating because you do them so well?
Obviously these are very basic ideas. There are many more
ideas you can uncover. Just analyze your strengths as a starting
point and see what you can come up with. There are numerous ways to earn extra money. All you have to do is apply your special skills and interests. You may just discover that you don't need that second job after all!
- Do you enjoy working with numbers?
If you're great at balancing your checkbook, maybe you could pick up a
few extra dollars each month balancing checkbooks for friends who hate
doing it themselves.
A fellow I know used to order pizza for a bank teller on a regular basis in exchange for keeping his checkbook in order for him. He hated doing it himself, yet the teller found it very easy and enjoyable.
- Are you an artistic person who happens to also be a penny-saver. You've crafted a beautiful
decorative container to hold your pennies. Would they make great gifts for others?
Make a few extras and see how they sell at
Christmas bazaars. Give some away as gifts to nieces, nephews, or grandchildren. Others may see them and want to buy one. Some may take
them to school and show them around, resulting in orders.
If you make it fun for the kids to use them, parents will greatly
appreciate it. And of course the children are learning a great
- Are you computer literate? Tutor others who are just getting started with computers. Help them get connected to the internet. Or install software or hardware for them.
- Are you a Perfectionist? Can't stand for your car to be dirty? Is your car always spotless, inside and out?
Next time someone compliments you on it (or wishes their
car always looked great like yours), let them know you'll keep theirs in tip-top shape as well for a few bucks every week or so.
Their friends and
neighbors will notice, and before long you could have a
steady stream of income. In my area, salt and chemicals
need to be removed on a regular basis during the winter months.
- Do you Enjoy the Great Outdoors? Take advantage of the Seasons:
- Fall - Rake and bag leaves and haul them away for homeowners who don't enjoy this type work, or who can't
do it themselves. Fall is also a great time to give lawns a final
mowing. Mow the leaves up with the final grass cutting for the
year. The leaves are actually great nourishment for the grass.
- Winter -
Shovel snow from sidewalks. Shovel convenient paths so others can get in their cars
(especially the elderly). Or run errands for them while you're
already out doing your own errands. Wash the salt and chemicals off
neighbors' cars after each snowstorm.
- Spring -
Weed, till soil, remove downed branches after a storm. Plant flowers and do light gardening work.
- Summer - Some of your neighbors might have swimming pools. Are you good at
cleaning them? How about making sure the chemicals are just
Remove stray leaves and foreign objects that end up in the pool.
Water flower and vegetable gardens in the evenings or early mornings for those who
don't enjoy it or can't do it. Weed their flower or veggie
gardens. See what you can do for the neighbors in your area
while they enjoy their vacations.
- Change of Seasons - Remove leaves from your neighbors' gutters. There will most likely
be lots of downed tree branches to gather and remove.
Darlene Arechederra is the author of Rat Race Blues - How to Break the
Stranglehold. She offers hope and help in finding
money, time and energy to support your dreams.
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