Obviously those of us who have made the conscious decision to get out of debt and eliminate credit card payments, car notes, mortgage payments and any other debt, have inevitably had the thought process “How can I increase my income and move towards my debt-free life at a quicker rate“.
Of course the easiest answer is to spend less and make more. Given the huge number of people saddled with debt in this country (I read a headline this morning indicating that more people are paying their credit cards ahead of their mortgages), the simple approach of spending less and making more isn’t quite as easy as it seems.
While I’ve come to view the ‘spending less’ part as primarily a psychological challenge – prioritizing how and where our money goes; the ‘earning more’ half of the equation actually seems to require some tangible physical action and much more effort.
I’ve read the financial guru books that suggest everything from yard sales, to eBay, lemonade stands to filling out online surveys. And while these options might serve a small complimentary role towards boosting your household income and consequently, the size of your DEBT SNOWBALL, I’ve personally found the best option (and probably my least favorite) to be …
The Part-Time Job
That’s right, the part-time job. Not very appealing on the surface to those of us with full-time gigs that we find ourselves at Monday through Friday. And even less appealing is the thought of leaving one job to head to directly to another. Of course we value our down time and have other ‘responsibilities’ to address – kids, the house, pets, laundry, yard work, time to relax, etc. The thought of a part-time jobs becomes even less appealing when we realize that it’s most likely going to pay a heck of a lot less than what we’re used to earning between the hours of 8 and 5.
But lest you forgot … “Long is the Way and Hard, that out of Debt hell leads up to light” … I believe that’s how Milton put it anyway.
What I decided to do is pursue short-term, temporary jobs that I could work during the hours I had available – namely, nights and weekends. And psychologically for me, the ‘temporary’ aspect is important. I get a chance to try something new, earn a little extra money, and most importantly – no matter how much I may dislike the job, I know it’s only short-term. I’m thinking of it like the show Dirty Jobs – I’m going to take a series of temporary jobs, maybe learn a few things, and increase the size of my debt snowball along the way.
And really, if we apply the same diligence towards managing our TIME that we do towards managing our BUDGETS, I’m sure we can all find a little waste in both and an opportunity to use our time and resources more wisely. I’ve made the decision to find a way to squeeze an extra 20 hours out a week to direct towards a part-time jobs.
So what’s up next for me? A perfect part-time job for the debt weary: a 2010 US Census Job. Seriously, the jobs are temporary and the pay is not bad – $15 an hour in my area. The big perk – lots of scheduling flexibility. Take a look at the website for job information in your area –
Other things on my list – H&R Block part-time tax employee and working in a political campaign office (lots of elections coming up at the end of this year).
So what have been your strategies to increase your income and the size of your debt snowball? What part-time jobs have you worked? Any ideas to share?