No matter what your income is, you probably have a hobby. Something you enjoy doing when you have some free time. Hobbies are part of the human experience. A lot of times, they could be your favorite thing to do in life. Some people might even put in 40 hours a week at work just so they can afford to enjoy their hobbies on the weekends.
For me, I’m enjoying a hobby right now as I type these words. I’ve always enjoyed expressing my thoughts in written form. Sometimes I choose to have conversations in my head even when there’s a perfectly quiet person in the room with me who could listen. I don’t know why I keep my thoughts to myself sometimes, but writing has been a great way for me to share what I’m thinking.
What I want to talk about specifically in this post is the monetization of our hobbies. Having something you enjoy doing is great, but wouldn’t it be even better if you could make money doing it? I think everyone who is trying to retire at some point in their life should get on board with me and find something they enjoy doing that might become profitable.
You can use the money
If you’re reading this, then you could probably use some extra money. Even if you’re making a good living and maxing out your investment accounts, having additional income will only shorten the path to financial independence.
I’ve always enjoyed walking around stores and window shopping even though I usually don’t buy anything. There’s something about seeing new things that intrigues me and makes me feel like I’m on a treasure hunt. I found a way to monetize this hobby by changing where I window shop and actually purchasing items. I shop at yard sales and thrift stores and flip the items on eBay. It’s a great excuse to get out of the house since I work from home with my main job and it’s becoming quite profitable.
I profited an extra $5,000 this year flipping things and if I continue to do this hobby for the rest of my life, it should add hundreds of thousands of dollars to my portfolio if I invest the money.
Since you enjoy doing it, you’ll stay motivated
The difference between monetizing a hobby and starting something from scratch just to earn extra income is that you’re more likely to stick with it if you enjoy doing it. Everyone wants a get rich quick scheme, but they don’t exist. If you can find a way to make money from a hobby, you’ll be more likely to succeed because it’s something you’d do even if you weren’t earning anything. Some people like making money just to make money, so the build-something-from-scratch method might work for them. The key is to be sure you enjoy it.
It might be that it’s impossible to make extra money just by doing the hobby itself. You might have to get creative and do something related to the hobby instead.
For example, you may love playing the guitar but can’t make any money just by sitting there playing. You could make money by teaching others how to play though and might find you love doing that.
You’d still get to play, but you’d also be sharing your knowledge with the world and helping someone else get to the level you’re at. Maybe you like fixing things and could learn how to repair guitars. You could start charging people to repair their instruments and who knows what kind of money you could make doing that.
There are a number of ways to make money with virtually every hobby out there.
Don’t let the monetization kill the fun
If I had started this blog with the sole purpose to make money, I probably would’ve already quit by now. I created this blog as a way to track my financial progress and get my thoughts on “paper”. I’ve had thoughts in the past that I’d like to try my hand at writing in some form and blogging has been a great format for it.
When it comes to monetizing this blog, I’ve come across some truly soul-sucking ideas. I’m not good at monetizing a website and I may never be. You should keep in mind that you don’t have to make money with every hobby you do.
If you can’t think of a way to generate income from your hobbies, or the ways you’ve tried are painfully boring, you shouldn’t let that take the fun away. Either try a new way to monetize or give up monetizing all together. You should at least try though. Getting people to fork over money can be quite difficult. A lot of times, some of the things you have to do to make money are boring. I don’t necessarily like to list things on eBay or deal with customers but I have fun finding the things to flip, so that makes up for it.
With that being said, you might stumble across a way to earn extra money that is easy and is something you love to do. Making money flipping things is really easy for me and I wish I had taken it seriously when I was younger. I probably would have bypassed some of the crappy jobs I had when I was younger if I tried flipping things instead.
You might find your new career
I’m not trying to convince you to become an entrepreneur and quit you 9-5, especially if you enjoy your full-time job. A lot of people have started earning money doing something they enjoy and turn it into a full-time gig though. A money making hobby is a great thing to have especially in retirement because you’ll have something to work on and another source of income in case something happens to your nest egg.
Just making a few thousand extra dollars can really boost your wealth over the years and that’s what I want to drive home in this article. The cool thing is that it’s never been easier to make money doing something you enjoy.
Have you thought about ways you could monetize your hobbies? Already making money from a hobby? Tell us about it in the comments!