A Passion Economy
My first side hustle was working at a toy store. I was a college student working a full-time summer internship at a large company in their IT department. However, a few nights a week and weekends, I would work at a local toy store. I assembled bicycles and stocked the shelves. I thought it was all about the money – but as I look back, I loved the look on kids’ faces the first time they got to see their new bike. They weren’t allowed to ride in the store, but I let it go from time to time. Yeah, I made a bit of money, but there’s nothing like that feeling of seeing a child ride their new bike for the first time.
I suspect that many of you who are reading this chose to be a pediatric therapist because of your passion for seeing the look on the children and adults you help when they accomplished a goal. No goal too small to celebrate with a smile. You were paid for your services, but a big part of your compensation was paid in smiles. Finding ways to combine being paid for your expertise and passion can be a successful side hustle.
Finding Your Niche
Due to COVID, we saw a proliferation or delivery of services virtually, opening many opportunities to take your passion and find a way to start a side hustle. Growing your practice online has never been easier. Your knowledge and expertise could not only be used to deliver services locally face to face but could be used statewide, nationally, or even internationally.
Here are a couple of examples:
- Creating pediatric therapy content to supplement products and services currently being used by special needs families. This could include webinars on particular topics, a weekly blog, or a download with activities that can be done at home.
- Offering 1:1 consultations or coaching sessions around a specific topic that can help someone maneuver around a particular topic or providing other ways for customers to be receiving services, e.g., supplementing services provided by schools.
There are many more examples you can explore. Using what you know to help people, especially supplementing their current special needs support by providing options to provide additional opportunities for their children to get something more. After all, parents are just trying to give their children every chance they deserve. Who better than you to provide that chance?
Benefits of a Side Hustle
The benefits of a side hustle go beyond assisting families with their children. There are many other ways a side hustle can benefit you and your career. Something outside of your full-time job gives you the ability to use your skills that you might not be using during your regular position. Examples include be writing meaningful content, creating how-to guides, moderating support groups, or lending expertise in areas you have experienced in prior employment.
In addition to sharpening dormant skills, you will get to experience a different patient that you would not usually be able to lend your expertise. You can work with them during your off hours, weekends, or even consider summer hours to help parents avoid the summer slide.
Since a side hustle is totally under your purview there are no limitations to the ways you may be able to use your skills to improve the lives of those who with special needs. You get to be as creative as you desire, and really follow your passion while being compensated for your service.
Starting a side hustle has never been easier or more meaningful. This year, more than 1 in 3 Americans will enable themselves to follow their passion with a side hustle. We here at Vitalxchange are just as passionate about our caregiver community and giving you all the tools you need to set up shop to serve them better. All you need to do to start following your passion is 10 minutes to set up your virtual storefront. You will be well on your way to seeing more of those smiles that make all your hard work worth it.