Gee, thanks Trent. Now I’m a chef.

Chef and his signature dish.This has got to be my last after-midnight post. This schedule is killing me, but I’m just so pumped about a couple of things going on right now that I can’t stop working on them. I’m also pretty pumped to have more than a week of daily postings to this blog — just 2 more weeks and the habit will be formed, they say — but I do have to figure out how to get it done before 2am.

What really pumped me up today — the pump, if you will — was an article posted by Trent on The Simple Dollar. This is one of probably a dozen personal finance blogs I subscribe to, and it is by far my favorite. The article was about the benefits of setting up multiple income streams in your life, effectively diversifying your human capital to increase your income and cushion the blow if something happens to you day job.

Here was my comment on his blog:

“Trent, thanks again for the kick in the pants (the backside kind (good), not the frontside kind (bad)).

“I’ve been thinking about the multiple income stream idea for a while, and I guess my chief concern was that raised by Barbara Stanny above. I figured I’d earn more by focusing on my highest-income pursuit – my day job – rather than diversifying my human capital, since nothing else I could do would earn me as much per hour of effort as my day job, not even close, especially with overtime factored in.

“This post got my cranial juices flowing, though. What if I break out of the time-for-money paradigm? Right now I’m developing an information product related to cooking that could generate a passive income that could scale WAY beyond the number of hours I put into it. That was already in the works. What THIS article got me thinking was: why don’t I start a personal chef / small-scale catering business?

“I already do the majority of my cooking 1 day a week…what if I just doubled, tripled, or quadrupled the quantity (which does not increase the level of time and effort by the same amount) packaged it into meals, and sold it to folks who want home-cooked meals without the hassle? This is turning my greatest passion – cooking good food for people who appreciate it – and turning it into an income stream. I figure at the very least, my passion for cooking will start to pay for itself, and what I learn from this business may improve the quality of my info product.

The punchline: I posted an ad on craigslist earlier this evening. If anyone’s in the Minneapolis area, search for “personal chef”. Bon appetit.”

Sorry for the long quote — especially one that’s already posted someplace — but it demonstrates that I’ve done my 500 words today, even with a weak post like this one. I guess I just want to make a couple of things clear.

First, follow your bliss, even if it’s only by a couple of baby steps each day. That craigslist ad was a huge step for me, because it’s starting the ball rolling on testing a career in cooking — even for only a few hours a week — that I’ve always dreamed about, and that act of putting myself out there only took 10 minutes and is completely anonymous if I fail (unless you’re reading this…d’oh!).

Second, I guess it’s alright that most personal finance blogs, when they’re not filling pages and pages quoting each other, publish a lot of repetitive stuff, just like magazines do. Eyeballs are drawn to new posts, not new ideas. Because a lot of these messages take time and repetition to set in, especially when your skull is as thick as mine. I’ve read about the value of having multiple income streams dozens of times, but I’ve never put it into practice. Trent just happened to have that thought today, when I was receptive to it and needing to be reminded. This time I’m ready. Thanks again, Trent.

Call to action (which I’m going to start calling “required reading”): read Trent’s article about multiple income streams, as well as this one on Monster about monetizing your hobbies. List 3 things you love to do and would do for no money. Pick the easiest one to monetize, and post an ad on craigslist advertising your new business. You can always use their anonymous email feature in case you chicken out, but I want you to try this so you can see for yourself how responsive people might be to your new business. You might be surprised. Then, you might also wind up following your bliss.


One response to “Gee, thanks Trent. Now I’m a chef.

  1. I really appreciated your comments about staying focused while figuring out alternative sources of income. Sounds like you’re on the right track… Stay focused!!!

    I wish you lots of success,

    Barbara Stanny

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