We can’t always afford to quit our day jobs to pursue our dream career. Food needs to be put on the table, and deposits need to keep going into the kids’ college funds.

But it can be hard sticking to a career that we don’t like. Without a way to get ourselves out of the rut and challenge ourselves, starting a new career from scratch might start to seem more and more attractive.

The key to killing this boredom without turning your life upside down is to start a side hustle. A side hustle is a great way to earn some extra money while doing something new and enjoyable.

Not sure where to start? Here are some tips to help pick the perfect side hustle.

Analyze your hobbies

What do you do when you’re not working or taking care of your family? Do you read books? Sew clothes? Carve wood?

Just about any hobby can be turned into a side hustle. A reading hobby can become a book review blog. A knack for fashion design can turn into an Etsy shop. A wood carving hobby can become a YouTube channel giving whittling tutorials. The key is to make sure it’s something you really like, otherwise you won’t be motivated to dedicate your time to it.

Figure out how much time you can give

If you’re working 50+ hours a week, then creating a full collection for an Etsy store might not be realistic. But you might be able to dedicate Sunday nights to crafting jewelry or making custom T-shirt graphics. If you can only read one or two books a month, then sticking to classics will save you from the pressure to keep up with the latest releases.

There’s also the difficulty of marketing the business. Going viral is like being hit by a bolt of lightning, which means that it’s very unlikely that people will stumble upon your business and tell everyone they know about it. It’ll be up to you to drive traffic back to your business. That means promoting on social media, networking with like-minded people, designing your logo, building your website and more.

Always keep in mind that the side hustle needs to fit your schedule – not the other way around.

How important is money?

If you want to be able to make a solid chunk of change on your side hustle, then you need to see where the cash flow is. It can take years before a YouTube channel or blog starts making money, and online stores are completely reliant on sales; you can make hundreds of dollars on sales one month, then just have a couple of customers the next month.

If money is a big reason for wanting to start a side hustle, then you want to go where you can make money in a reasonable amount of time. No business makes a profit in the very beginning, but if you want to start making money at some point in the future, then you have to carefully consider your side hustle.

Getting started

Finally, when you’ve picked out your side hustle and are ready to begin, all that’s left is finding the right tools and DOING IT! Website-building programs like WordPress and Wix are great ways to get your brand online, and being active on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram are musts.

Now you have to just create content and put yourself out there. Start scheduling when you can put the work into your side hustle, and stick to it. Only adjust when absolutely necessary. Not following your schedule is a surefire way to make your business fail, and never adjusting it will eventually cause problems in your family or at your day job. Always remember that life can be unpredictable, so you just have to roll with the punches!

Be sure to follow these tips, and you’ll be able to embark on your project completely prepared!