For years, middle class workers in the United States have been told that higher education and a salaried job is the key to success. Granted, the statistics still demonstrate that college graduates earn substantially more over a lifetime than those with a mere high school diploma. In spite of this, it has become quite apparent in recent years that a second income is a critical part of any long-term financial plan even for the well-educated. For many, it can be the difference between independence and perpetual indebtedness.
The World Economy is Changing
During the past few decades, so-called “globalization” has disrupted the traditional economic relationship between developed and undeveloped nations. This is both a blessing and a curse for industrialized countries. It’s greased the wheels of commerce throughout the world and increased trade, but it’s also led to a precipitous decline in high-paying jobs. Real wages have been on the decline for years, and many households are getting squeezed financially with no end in sight. To maintain a certain lifestyle, people from all walks of life must learn to think outside the box.
Side Incomes to Stay Above Water
Despite making millions of dollars a year at his late night talk show gig, Jay Leno has always had at least two jobs. He uses one job to pay the bills, and saves the income from the other. Clearly, even the ultra-wealthy understand the benefit of multiple streams of income. There’s no such thing as a sure thing, which is why it makes sense to keep your eggs in multiple baskets. One or more side incomes give you some leeway and allow you to build a nest egg for the future.
Embracing the Entrepreneur Within
Working two full-time jobs doesn’t leave you with much time left over for a life. It’s often far more lucrative to strike out on your own and start making deals rather than cashing paychecks. You can start any number of businesses on your own either online or in the real world with nothing more than your free time and a laptop. Blogging, for instance, can be quite profitable for those who know how to monetize their knowledge through affiliate marketing sales and online advertising.
Getting Started on Your Future
First things first, position yourself for success by adopting the mindset of a winner. Always look for opportunities to make money off of your talents in your free time. You don’t have begin by taking out a small business loan at the local credit union, as there are plenty of money making opportunities out there that don’t cost a dime to get started. Participating in focus groups, online surveys and secret shopper programs requires no expertise but can potentially generate significant side income if you structure your efforts methodically. Regardless of which route you decide to take, it’s essential that you make a substantial side income a major part of your life plan moving forward.