Jason J. Gullickson

Jason J. Gullickson

Side-hustle Salad

I have a basket full of side projects. By side projects I mean projects outside of my professional work (although in my mind they have more of a priority than my current professional work).

I'm tempted to find a way for one of these projects to replace my "dayjob", but it's hard to do that without putting weight on them that might spoil them. One thing I've learned the hard way is how quickly something good can be ruined by turning it into "a job”.

But then a thought came to mind: instead of focusing on one project and trying to make a living off it, could I cultivate an assortment of projects that individually would be too small to make a living off of but together could provide a sustainable income? Sort of a garden-vs-farm approach?

The first thought is that this goes against everything they tell you about "efficiency", the overhead, the thrash, the lack of focus associated with doing more than one thing at a time. But... I've always been good at working on more than one thing at a time, and in fact it's in my nature to switch from one thing to another when I get "stuck". Some of the worst work I've done has been because I've forced myself to grind on a problem and ignore my natural attraction to other work (which usually leads to insights that inform the former).

Also I'm no believer in the unqualified term "efficiency".

It does go against industrial "best practices", but here again I'm no supporter of industrialization, in fact I'm rather the enemy of it.

I think what's needed is a management philosophy that is designed from scratch to look at working this way in a positive light. Applying existing modes doesn't work, but that doesn't mean that there's not new modes (or perhaps very old modes ) that could. If I'm able to find something suitable, it could be liberating not only for me, but others I've known who are happiest when working this way.