Secrets of a successful side hustle

Photo by Holly Stratton on Unsplash

Photo by Holly Stratton on Unsplash

Over the past 20 years I have built a number of side hustles around raising three children. 
My experience is that a successful side hustle recipe has three surprising ingredients : Money, Mindset and Mates. 


This may be obvious but I don’t mean money in terms of money to start the side hustle. Indeed, one of the great things about a side hustle is that you often don’t need much to get going. But money is the life-blood of any venture and you have to be wiling to deal with it. That means you have to be able to ask for it and that’s where unexpected challenges can arise, especially for women. 

You need a healthy relationship with money and a strong sense of your own value. 


Your mindset is your attitude and this can make a massive difference to the success of any project. How you deal with set-backs and opportunities is really significant and surprisingly an amazing opportunity can blow just as many circuits as a set-back. 

The good news is that you can always change your mindset. In fact, over the years this has probably been the most significant area of self-development for me. That’s the bonus of a side hustle, you don’t just get to grow a business, you get to grow yourself! 

You need to be ready to change your mind.


I grew up in a family business. My parents ran a newsagents and I didn’t realise until I began to run my own business that all their friends also had businesses. Running a business can feel lonely, especially if all your friends have careers. It’s important to find people you can bounce ideas off and who understand what is motivating you to do this crazy thing. There will be plenty of people who will not understand and there may even be some who feel threatened. 

You need a side hustle tribe. 

Three legged stool

These three ingredients are like the legs of a stool. If one of them is off, the stool will wobble and you can use it as a diagnostic. If your venture is feeling wobbly here are three quick fixes. 

Strengthening the money leg:

Ask yourself, if money were one of your friends, what kind of friendship would that be? Is she a pain in the neck? Do you feel she lets you down? Are you embarrassed by her?  What kind of friendship would you like?

Have a look at, “Money talks are you ready to listen?” blog for a fun way to discover your relationships with money!

Strengthening the mindset leg:

There is unfortunately a stigma attached to changing your mind even though one of the greatest minds of the 20th century, Albert Einstein, once famously stated that we can’t solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created

When you need to think creatively or change your perspective, try taking 5-10 slow steps backwards. Before you start make sure to check for any obstacles! 
Take your time and engage your senses as they will be heightened by the experience. Be aware of any new ideas that come to you or just enjoy the calming sensation. Retro-walking is a ‘neurobic activity’. This means it stimulates your brain into making new connections and can help to get new ideas flowing. 

For more ideas have a look at our “Changing Your Mind” blog.

Strengthening the mates leg:

One easy way to boost your tribe is by listening to podcasts about business. Having one playing while you are cooking dinner or traveling is a great way to surround yourself with inspiration. There’s nothing quite like hearing the stories of other successful entrepreneurs to encourage you when things aren’t quite going to plan. 

Here are three of our favourites:

Melyssa Griffin : Pursuit with purpose podcast
How I built this with Guy Raz
Marie Forleo : MarieTV  - not a podcast but a great source of inspiration. 


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