Creating Multiple Income Streams

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Liwu Two
Creative Commons License photo credit: kin0be

It’s no secret that one of the ways to be financially secure is to have multiple income streams. If one part of your income crumbles, you’ve got other things to fall back on and soften the monetary blow.  With the displeasure I’m feeling with my current position, the more I realize that I need to break free from the mold of what I think is a “normal” job and try my hand at some new ventures.  Of course, I’m not going to just quit my job (I like having health insurance right now!), but wouldn’t it be awesome if I could make enough money from other income streams that I could at least work part time?

I keep thinking about what I’m passionate about.  I want to do things that I love, things that really make me feel good about myself.  I enjoy making soap, photographing people, and making natural body care products. I also enjoy teaching others how to save money and live a greener life (if that wasn’t obvious 😉 )

Now I just need to figure out what to focus on (if I should focus on one thing) and tweak that until I get something that works for me.  It’s so hard because I’m afraid of failure.  I know that’s not the way I should look at it.  I feel like there’s so much competition out there that I’m not going to succeed.  I need to go into it with a good attitude and see how it works out.

Do you have multiple income streams?  What could you do to create some?

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29 thoughts on “Creating Multiple Income Streams

  1. Forest says:

    Focus is always the problem when creating multiple streams…. AtI gave up the real world to work online almost 3 years ago now and although i don’t make a whole lot of cash, I make enough to get by.

    I do graphic and web design for a bunch of clients and then diversify my income through various websites of my own… that is pretty much it.

    I want to get into teaching and will be trying to teach a “Blogging for Business and Pleasure” starter course this september.

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    ISA Reply:

    I’d totally take that course 🙂

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    Mrs Money Reply:

    I agree- what a great idea about the blogging course! How cool.

    I think I need to focus on one thing and make that my baby. 🙂

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  2. Jane says:

    Work is hard to come by in my area – it’s often not what you know but who you know. While it’s a juggling act, I’m grateful for my three part time jobs – two in school hours, one freelance at night.
    It’s definitely a good feeling that if something happens with one, there are back ups.

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    Mrs Money Reply:

    Jane- Good point! I’m hoping I can get one of the ventures off the ground soon.

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  3. sue says:

    I think (after trying to do multiple things for cash simultaneously) that it’s better to pick *one thing* and focus on it. IOW, if you know you can satisfy customers with your handmade soaps and expand your line to create a niche for yourself, you’ll be in a good place. If you can do this *while* you’re working your f/t job, even better – b/c creating a product with high demand (that’s reasonably priced so you don’t take a huge hit if [when] the economy doesn’t turn around) will have a lasting legacy as you build the business (income stream) and still provide you with the stability of your current position.

    Once I figured out my true passion (photography), it was easy to say, “This candle thing is fun, but a do-for-myself-thing, only.” Candles are/were fun, but never the income stream I desired. Photography is building slowly, but as my work gets out there, it’s easier to get new clients and build.

    Find your passion and make it singular – let the rest take care of itself. I truly believe it will. 🙂

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    Mrs Money Reply:

    sue- Thanks so much for your kind words of encouragement! I think photography would be more profitable for me at this time, but soap making is transportable if we decided to move.

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  4. Craig Ford says:

    I like the idea of creating multiple income streams. I think smaller profits coming in from different sources makes sense. That is one of the reasons I started blogging. I’m now trying to find other ways to create income streams.

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    Mrs Money Reply:

    Craig- I thought I would make good money blogging but it hasn’t happened so far! 😉 That would be amazing if I could do that!

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  5. Revanche says:

    Through my latest stint of unemployment, this concept has taken on a whole new level of importance. My primary industry in which I’d dedicated 5 years and an education was dying, if I hadn’t any other moneymaking interests or opportunities, I would have run out of money much more quickly.

    Sure there’s an issue of focus, but let’s be honest here, I have focus issues whether or not I’ve slated one or five things to do in a day. I may as well have a variety of possibilities to pick from. The best I can do is narrow it to three or four options, and work on them round robin to keep from letting anything stagnate or get too overwhelming.

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    Mrs Money Reply:

    Revanche- I have focus issues too (obviously-lol!) so I can see your points. I need to figure out what I want to do and actually do it!

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  6. LivingOurWay says:

    Currently, we do have multiple streams of income and while soe of those are very small streams…they definately give us a lot of freedom. I’ve learned that I can let go and just do what God is telling me to do rather than feeling trapped in a particular job. I do better work when I don’t feel trapped doing something.

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    Mrs Money Reply:

    LivingOurWay- I like that. I want that feeling! Hopefully I’ll be able to get there soon!

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  7. Simple in France says:

    Like Revanche, I’ve learned the hard way that sometimes alternative incomes streams are a good thing! Plus, I get bored doing too much of any one activity. I wouldn’t mind figuring out a way to earn money online through writing (guest posting? the blog I already have? A different blog?) and combining that with teaching English here in France . . . and who knows what else.

    I like your idea of making your own cosmetics by the way. At least here in France, organic/natural cosmetics (deodorants, shampoos etc) are ridiculously expensive, yet people buy them. I can definitely see a market there. . . plus people are very into their perfumes and soaps here!

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    Mrs Money Reply:

    Simple in France- I think I just need to bite the bullet and go for it. I should start small and go from there, that way if it’s not super successful or profitable then I won’t be too stressed!

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  8. Money Funk says:

    I definitely think you could make money from your natural products line. Enough to provide for living off the grid, as you chose. You have enough social media knowledge to spread the word and make it work for you. You have a gazillion virtual friends that will help you spread the word. 🙂

    As for the photog, consider just shooting for fun and lackidasically listing them on iStockphoto, or such. Its making a multiple stream, but allows you to focus outright on your body line.

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    Mrs Money Reply:

    Money Funk- Thanks!! 🙂 I need to get on it. That’s one of my downfalls- I worry about failing so I don’t do ANYTHING. :/

    That’s a great point about iStockphoto- I should look into that. Thanks!

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  9. Heather says:

    My day job takes a lot of time and energy, more than it would if I did it with less zeal 😉 That said, as this school year closes, I’m looking at spending less time at work (I’m a teacher) and more time in my two newer pursuits.

    (I do have materials that I have created for teaching beginning band that I have sold a few of, but not enough even to call a revenue trickle.)

    I am in the process of opening a home-based personal training business that I am excited about but unsure how it’s going to go, mainly because marketing is NOT one of my strengths. I am training some friends now for free (well, in exchange for equipment) for practice, and I’m hoping that will generate a little word-of-mouth. I have a blog that is connected, a webpage (that will need to look nicer, but it suffices for now), and the business just joined Twitter. We’ll see.

    It would be great if someday the blog brought in money, but I am not near those days, I don’t think.

    It was suggested to me that I go into public speaking regarding health and fitness, which is something that appeals to me, but I don’t know how to break into that field. I’m going to ask more questions of the person who suggested it, as I think he might have more information.

    I also am a trombone player and do some freelance playing. At this point, I mostly play at holidays for churches. When I lived back east, I played a lot more (well, and I played a lot better :))

    I have done tutoring and proofreading for extra cash here and there.

    I have a lot of skills – I really just lack the marketing part so that people can take advantage of said skills!!

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    Mrs Money Reply:

    Heather- Wow, you are a busy woman!! I think it’s great that you do all those things. It makes you happy and marketable!

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  10. ami@40daystochange says:

    I think you could pursue all your interests – as interests. But if you’re thinking of focusing, I’d suggest doing it based on your return on your time.

    Figure out how many hours you put in. Take the dollar revenue you receive, subtract all your costs. Divide the result by the number of hours (total – include production but also marketing, administrative, billing, etc.).

    I think it’s likely that one activity will have the best return on your TIME – and that’s the one I’d focus on.

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    Mrs Money Reply:

    ami- That’s why I am thinking soap making may not be super profitable. I’d have to sell a ton of soap to be able to quit my day job! My hubby thinks I should focus on photography. I just need to make a decision!

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  11. Little House says:

    I would say you probably want to focus on what you think you do best. For example, you might feel you excel at making natural body care products. You could start by selling them on ebay, craigslist, or open up a small online store (there are lots of great sites out there that will allow you to build it yourself.) If you could start it as a side business, then eventually build it up so that you could do it full time, the financial aspects of the switch wouldn’t be so dramatic.

    P.S. You need to talk with Money Funk. She wants to start a vegan business. Maybe the two of you could combine your efforts!

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    Mrs Money Reply:

    Little House- I need to start actually doing something about it. I’m really bad about that. I’m afraid of failure. 🙂 Thanks for the tip!

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  12. RainyDaySaver says:

    Multiple income streams are a good idea — unfortunately, all of mine are in the same business (writing/editing). I’m trying to diversify my freelance gigs, and I always have a few things going on at once on that end. But I’d also like to do something different for a change!

    Ideally, PASSIVE income streams are best. I’m still in the brainstorming portion of diversification, but here’s hoping we both soon start doing the things we truly love — and get an income for it.

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  13. Aury (Thunderdrake) says:

    Having multiple streams of income serves as a fantastic hedge against economic uncertainty. But I consider it more as a principle of protection rather than a yardstick of wealth. Though it’s much, MUCH more safer than having an employee paycheck, especially during these economic times.

    The streams I’m working towards building would be as follows.
    Investments = Stocks, Bonds, Commodity appreciation
    Blog = Affiliate sales, Advertising, Donations
    Intellectual Property = Novels

    Surely THAT’S diversified!

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    Mrs Money Reply:

    Aury- That sounds great! It’s awesome you’ve got so many sources of income. I hope everything works out well for you!

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