People talk about passive income like it’s this magical thing that answers all your problems, like making it possible to quit your job or live your dream lifestyle. I’ve always been interested in passive income, so about 8 months ago, after some frustrations at work, I decided to aggressively pursue passive income and side hustles. Best-Business-Making-Money – For Marketers Who Seriously Want To Make Money! The good news is, that it did work for me because, throughout 2021, I’ve actually been making more from these secondary income sources than I do from my full-time job. But when I took a minute to stop and think about how far I’d come, I realized that the extra money I was making didn’t tell the full story of building passive income and my overall earnings.
In some ways, I’ve actually moved farther away from the lifestyle that I wanted when I started this process.
So in this video, I want to talk about my exhausting experience pursuing passive income. Although it’s been fruitful, it has not been easy. I’m hoping that sharing my experience can help others navigate passive income and wealth-building in a healthier way, as well as remind me of what I need to improve on in the future. Best-Business-Making-Money – For Marketers Who Seriously Want To Make Money! We’re going to talk about the difference between the passive income dream lifestyle that many of us work towards, and what my lifestyle actually looks like throughout the process. One of the important things to realize is to build passive income, you have to trade your time today, for money in the future, and that can make the pursuit of passive income much different than what people think.
So I’m going to share my challenges, my experiences, and my advice for working towards passive income based on both my success and hardships throughout the process. Best-Business-Making-Money – For Marketers Who Seriously Want To Make Money! Stick around! When I set out to increase my income, I did so because I wanted to live off of more than the $45,000 a year I was getting paid at my job.
Like most people, I felt trapped by the 9-5 lifestyle, I wanted to be my own boss, and I just felt like I lacked control and freedom in my life. Specifically, I wanted the freedom to take the morning, afternoon, or even a whole day off of work anytime I felt like it.
I dreamed of a point in my life where I could work less than 40 hours a week, taking 3-day weekends all the time and having plenty of time for myself. I also liked the idea of being able to travel and do things I wanted to do while money was still coming in. So obviously, passive income seemed like the way to get there. But no one starts with passive income, and I wasn’t in a place where I could quit my job and start living off of other income immediately.
I knew I needed to start building some passive income streams to be able to make that jump, so I started doing some research on how to do that.
I decided to start with creating an Amazon Affiliate website, where I would earn commissions on purchases made by anyone who visits the website. I also decided to start investing in a dividend income portfolio, which would pay me passive income every month or every quarter. But this is where the reality of passive income sets in – both of those things take a lot of time to build into meaningful income, especially if you want to live off of that income. I knew the best way to accelerate that process was to invest more heavily in these projects. Unfortunately, in order to do that, I had to earn more active income.
Since I hit a wall with my salary growth at work, I had to look elsewhere for extra income. So I picked up a freelance writing gig, where I put in maybe 5 to 10 hours a week, sometimes more, sometimes less.
This gave me an extra one to two thousand dollars a month to invest in my passive income projects. But this is where working towards passive income began to take its toll. At this point, I’m working 40 hours a week, plus an additional 5-10 hours on my freelance work to earn more money.
I felt like this was worth it because it gave me all the money I needed to put into these other projects. But, I still had to put in additional time to grow these other passive income sources. I probably spent about 3 hours a week managing my Amazon Affiliate website. Then, probably another 2 hours or so researching and building a dividend investment portfolio. So at this time, I am making more money thanks to my freelance gig, but it’s still not passive income.
And it started to become draining because I don’t love what I do at work and I don’t love freelance writing. I didn’t even pick a niche of products on Amazon that I was interested in because I was so focused on making it lucrative.
The only part I enjoyed was building a dividend portfolio and doing research on the stock market, which eventually led me to create this YouTube channel. I realized that creating a personal YouTube channel was another opportunity for passive income. Since I was already digging into my own finances and investing in the stock market, I thought I could just share my experiences in weekly videos without devoting too much extra energy.
Plus I figured the more passive income sources I could build, the easier it would be for me to reach my goals and achieve the lifestyle I wanted. And an early takeaway here is that starting this YouTube channel was the single best passive income source I could’ve taken action on.
The key was that I was actually passionate about what I was doing. It took me over 6 months to start getting paid for it, but because I enjoyed it, it was one of the only projects that didn’t completely drain me. Of course, it still required an extra 10 or so hours of work each week.
And a few months after starting this channel, a colleague of mine asked me to help him manage his YouTube channel, which probably takes another 5 hours a week.
And today, with all of these income sources combined, I’m finally exceeding the $45,000 salary I earn from my full-time job. And that was a super fulfilling and rewarding milestone to reach. Unfortunately, I realized with where I’m at now, it’s cost me everything I wanted to achieve with passive income in the first place. In an effort to achieve passive income, I picked up active side hustles and put time into building passive income sources.
But because of that, my lifestyle is far from passive. I still spend 40 hours a week at work. I spend an extra 5 to 10 hours a week on freelance writing to fuel my other projects. I spend another 5 hours a week managing my Amazon Affiliate site and my investment portfolio. Plus another 15 hours a week between this YouTube channel and the other channel I help run.
In total, that’s nearly 70 hours a week I put into working towards passive income. I’m still locked into the 9 to 5 hours at work, which means I squeeze in the extra 30 hours of work around that. And what that typically looks like is getting off work at 5, taking a small break for dinner, and working on my side projects until 10 or 11 pm.
On top of that, I usually dedicate my entire Saturday or Sunday to catching up on whatever projects I fall behind on, and sometimes both if I’m busy. And when I reflected on this, I realized that I sacrificed everything that I wanted to achieve with passive income.
I’ve given up all of the hobbies I wanted to put more time into in order to pursue passive income projects. Traveling is actually more difficult for me to do now because I have so many obligations I have to take care of on a weekly basis. Even though I started this to escape a 9-5, the 9-5 lifestyle would be substantially less demanding than what I’m doing now. So somehow, in an effort to reach financial freedom with passive income, I’ve gone in the opposite direction.
And this is the reality of passive income.
It doesn’t become passive or income overnight. After nearly a year of working on various income streams, I’ve almost doubled my income, but I’ve also nearly doubled the number of hours I’m working every week. Hopefully, if I did things right, then I can start to ease off of various areas and work back towards the lifestyle I originally wanted. But the truth is, this is usually what it takes to get any meaningful streams of passive income going in – investing tons of money, time or both for several months – even if you have to do that on top of a regular job.
And as exhausting as it is, I still want to use my progress as a learning experience to better navigate my relationship with passive income in the future.
When it comes down to it, all of the struggles and exhaustion I’ve experienced while pursuing passive income are because of the pressure I put on myself. Every extra dollar that comes in is validation that I’m making progress, so I become blind to anything but working even harder. And this is something I continue to struggle with managing. I know that I don’t need any additional income, it’s just something I want to work towards so that I’ll have a better life in the future. But for some reason, I view every opportunity to make money as mandatory and sacrifice everything I enjoy doing in order to chase after more income.
I’ve always believed that the secret to success with passive income streams is making passive income a hobby. If you can find a way to enjoy it, it becomes easy to devote your spare time and money to whatever passive income project you choose to pursue. But like I said, somewhere along the way, I lost sight of the reasons that I was pursuing passive income in the first place.
I’m no longer making time for my hobbies, my interests, or even certain aspects of my self-care. And making these sacrifices for additional passive income doesn’t make sense if I don’t give myself room to enjoy life, which is what I wanted to do more of in the first place.
So after making huge progress with various income streams, investing money, and my overall finances, I’m actually taking a step back from my passive income goals. I really want to take some time to refocus on what I actually want from a work-life balance, because it’s certainly not working 70-80 hours a week. My first step in doing this is cutting off my Amazon Affiliate website, which I’ve been working on for almost a year and a half.
For months, I’ve been absolutely miserable working on this project, and I’m simply not getting enough out of it to justify what I put into it. I’ll have a full video detailing this decision soon if you guys are interested in learning more about this.
Additionally, I’m going to ease off the gas on my other projects. Until this point, I’ve done every bit of work I can as early as possible because I feel like it will get me paid sooner. Best-Business-Making-Money – For Marketers Who Seriously Want To Make Money! But this is one of the reasons I sacrifice so many things in my life, and it leaves me completely drained and without time to do the things I really enjoy. I still hope to get to a point where I can make the jump to other income sources without the need for my full-time job, but until I get there, I need to find a healthy balance between everything I’ve got going on.
As I mentioned earlier, I still think one of the best ways to approach passive income is as a hobby.
I’ve made the mistake many times of viewing it as a mandatory obligation, which puts me in a really unhealthy commitment to working on these projects. But, this isn’t a sustainable way to work towards passive income goals. And if I want to make a long-term lifestyle out of passive income, or any sort of situation where I’m self-employed, I need to find a healthier way to do it. I hope you can take away something from my experience, and at the very least, maybe those of you working towards passive income goals can sympathize with the pressures and struggles that come with them. Best-Business-Making-Money – For Marketers Who Seriously Want To Make Money! I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments, whether you have any advice for navigating this process or if you just want to share similar experiences.
In any case, thanks for watching, be sure to click like if you enjoyed this video and I’ll see you next time..