“Do what you love and the money will follow.” I truly believe this adage, but the reality is that we still need to pay our rent and eat in the time before the money decides to follow. There's a learning curve to monetizing your passion. (And I'm not sure the curve EVER flattens…) Luckily, there are lots of ways to make some cash while still leaving most of your time to pursue your dreams and do passionate, meaningful work.
- Freelance. Chances are you have a skill (or three!) that you can market – perhaps you know web design or are a gifted writer or photographer. You could even and market yourself as a home organizer, event planner or caterer if you've got the talent! Be creative! And charge what you're worth!
- Sell your stuff. Most of us have a ton of stuff around that we don't really use or need. Selling your clutter can be a great way to purge your home and make a nice chunk of change. There are lots of ways to go about this: you could have a garage sale, list your stuff on eBay, haul a load to your friendly neighborhood pawn shop, or post items on Craigslist.
- Donate plasma. I've never done this, but I have a few friends who go in a few times a month. You get paid plus the added bonus of your plasma possible saving someone's life.
- Be a lab rat. I'm not allowed to participate in clinical studies because I have a history of depression, but if you're comfortable with the idea, these can pay a lot. I've seen a study for $8000 for a 30-day long study near where I live – not bad! I know I could live on $8000 for a few months without feeling too restricted. Be sure to think this one through very carefully, though, because participating in these does mean you are literally allowing people to experiment on you.
- Babysit. Spending time with children will keep you young. And parents will love you. And it's super easy! Most kids will behave, simply because you're someone new and they want you to like them. Older kids will probably be happy to bake cookies with you or something and babies are hilarious. Good times!
- Make things. Are you crafty? I'm jealous. Etsy is a wonderful, delicious community where you can sell and buy anything handmade. Use your skillz and get selling!