It’s seems like everyone has some sort of side hustle these days. If you have ever entertained the idea of joining a direct sales company, then you know that it can be downright frightening. Billions of questions bombard your mind as you begin researching. There are tactical questions such as: How do I know which company to choose? What if it’s a scam? How do I even get started? Let me tell you, I have learned quite a bit from starting my direct sales side hustle.
The hardest questions are the ones that hit closer to home. They might sound like: What if I’m not cut out for this? Will it take too much time away from my family? What will my people think about this? Do I have what it takes to put myself out there? To me, these are the kind of questions that are reflective of the deep spaces in your soul. The ones that challenge your enough-ness. And in my opinion, the ones that seems to hold much more weight in the decision making process, because these are the ones that are mostly likely to keep you from taking the leap.
If you are anything like me, then you have earnestly searched to find answers to questions like these before jumping into your direct sales side hustle. I talked to my family and my besties. I talked to people I know who are involved in direct sales themselves. I talked to people in the company I was looking at as well as those in other companies. And to my surprise, I got a very mixed set of reactions and opinions. But all of them helped me to determine if this direct sales side hustle was for me.
Life had some unexpected twists and turns for me. I knew that if I wanted to create some margin in my life to both save and have extra income to spend on the fun things, I would have to look at my options. After all, as a teacher the pay scale is basically mapped out with what I would earn for the rest of my life. And for some strange reason, the same opportunity kept presenting itself in weird and unexpected ways-through an internet search, a word with a friend, a Facebook post. We all think that Facebook listens to our conversations right? All of this, I believe, was no accident.
After wrestling with these questions (and about a billion more), I decided I would give this little direct sales side hustle a try. The decision wasn’t easy, but boy am I so glad that I took the leap and jumped right in. Here are some of my takeaways that I hope will help you in making your decision on whether or not you should leap too.
The Lessons I Have Learned
1. I am more than a mom:
For a long time I was so caught up in my identity as a mom that I couldn’t see very much beyond that. But, my little side hustle has helped stir something inside me that I hardly remembered being there. And I’ve even awakened some new passions I didn’t even know I had. I’ve realized that I love collaborating with other women about business ideas. I love learning-period! I love a good challenge, and I love dreaming big dreams. And in fact, I think dreaming big dreams honors my Creator. After all, he gave them to me. So in a way, this should be permission in itself to get out there and try.
2. I can do way more than I thought I could:
Of course with every business start up, comes challenges. But guess what? I can do hard things and so can you! I have figured out solutions to problems I never thought I could because I was willing to try and not give up. I have learned how to reach out to various professional learning communities to find answers. I have learned that when I mess up, I can fix it. I can do way more than I ever thought possible. And that makes me feel pretty darn good.
3. It’s okay to give myself permission to go for it:
I am generally a pretty big rule follower. I live my life inside the lines. It’s just where I feel most comfortable. However, in some respects that has made life pretty predictable for me. I was always taught that you go to work, do your job and get paid. All that is fine but guess what? It’s also okay to step out and see what happens. As a person who naturally puts the feelings, thoughts and desires of others first, I have pushed myself to realized that it’s okay to make myself a priority. I say push because this doesn’t come naturally to me. And it’s likely that you are exactly the same. Isn’t that how most women are wired? We are constantly living for our families, spouses and our children. Once I gave myself permission to leap, it was game on!
4. Fear will ALWAYS be there:
My friends! This one is HUGE for me! Stepping out there is really,really frightening. Fear makes us question, debate, and can ultimately make us walk away. But, ask anyone who has dared to dream big and act on their dream and they will tell you that fear is ALWAYS there. I have also realized that for every dream out there, a counteractive fear is present. You want to start a side hustle-but what if you fail? You want to learn to snowboard-what if you fall? You want to meet new people-what if they don’t like you? But my friends… fear is a liar. You never know what’s waiting on the other side. And…I don’t want to be a woman that wonders. I want to be a woman known for daring to try.
5. There is a whole community of people who want to support you:
Ask yourself, who is telling you not to do it (whatever “it” is)? Who’s telling you to stop dreaming? Stop listening to them. Because fear and discouragement are contagious. And sometimes, we have to borrow our confidence. Find that voice that will cheer you on. I promise…it’s out there. In fact, there is a tribe that is waiting to cheer you on. In direct sales there are teams and uplines. My suggestion is to tap into them but to also look beyond. Find them in Facebook groups, coaching groups, in podcasts, in a professional growth book and in blogs like this. Get hungry and search for your cheerleaders. I promise you will find them!
6. Little Eyes are Watching:
As an educator I am constantly telling my students they can dream big. I remind them on a daily basis that they can do hard things and that mistakes help them grow and learn. We are always talking about having a growth mindset. Each time I say these things, I hear that little voice inside me challenging myself to live up to these same mantras. I need to walk the walk otherwise I don’t feel qualified to push my students in this area. But more importantly, not only do I proclaim these truths on a daily basis in my classroom, but I also say them to my five year old daughter. So, remembering that she is watching makes me want to believe in my enough-ness so that I can cheer her on to do the same. The little ones are watching. And I want them to find the courage to dream big and to do the hard work.
7. It takes work, and smarts, and a willingness to keep trying:
Let’s not sugar coat things here. Your direct sales business will take work, grit and perseverance. You will need to be a problem solver and at times, will need to summon up the energy when you feel there is none left, in order to hustle. It will take time to get the results you are looking for. There will be feelings of complete victory and ones of deep defeat. You will have to learn how to push through the muck and how to pause to celebrate when you are on the mountain top. But never stop believing that you can do it. Because when you actually do “it”, it feels great!
8. You will find your tribe:
You’ll meet awesome people along the way. This is one of the biggest blessings from starting my direct sales business. If there is one thing I have learned from the past two years it’s that community is everything in life. Building a strong online community is vital in a direct sales business. And when that community is built upon relationships-it’s awesome. I have met some of the neatest people from my online community. These are people I get to do life with often. Many of my customers have become good friends and my existing friendships have been strengthened. I have created an awesome tribe of women who simply to do to life together. And that in itself is worth its weight in gold.
And let’s talk about other consultants. My “side hustle bestie” is a rare gem and has been such a blessing to me in this season of life. She’s not even on my team! We met through a mutual acquaintance and I basically made her be my friend (ha ha ha!). I can’t imagine doing this without her. And guess what? There are so many other amazing women out there that are working their side hustle because they are trying to make a better life for their families. They are working hard to pay for swim lessons or to take their kids on family trips. They are women who are courageously stepping out to make their mark. I admire them so very much!
So, is a direct sales side hustle for you?
Only you can decide this. But I am so glad I took the leap. Not necessarily because of the sales I’ve made. But because of the greater lessons learned along the way. I’d love for you to check out my side hustle here and join my shopping group! It’s great fun!