Like me Rachel comes from a professional background and like me she found it wasn’t enough. Rachel contacted me after reading our book Blogging Your Way To Riches and today she is sharing her story on shunning the 9 to 5. If you are looking for a way out do buy and read the book where we explain how you can make good money working online and blogging.
The realisation that the 9 to 5 was not enough
After many years of working in the legal profession, as a lawyer, it quickly became apparent that the changing face of the legal profession meant there would be no pay increases, no sick pay, no private pension and definitely no bonuses. I realised that there was no such thing as a ‘job for life’ and having a already been diagnosed with an underactive thyroid [meaning the ‘9 to 5’ got quite hard to cope with] I knew that I had to start making some changes.
I slowly came to the realisation that I needed to diversify so that I could generate as many different income streams as possible. More importantly, I needed to know that what I was earning was on my terms as I’m now all about living your best life on your own terms. We’re not all the same so why should we all work the same way?
What I did next
I’ve always loved writing and over recent years, I penned a couple of books: one factual and one fictional. The factual book shows people how to help their children pass the 11+ if you’re unable to afford a private tutor. My fictional book is a historical romance/drama and very much based on the kind of books I love to read. Writing them also helped me to remove my focus from other worries and just have books have helped me, I wanted to give back in the same way.
However, a more consistent source of secondary income has been my private tuition work. Since 2012, I’ve started and developed my own private tuition business specialising in tutoring children online for the 11+ entrance examination. I knew there was a demand in the North West where I lived and a couple of friends had already asked me to help their own children which I had thoroughly enjoyed doing.
I worked extremely hard to create a database of quality materials and to really ‘put myself out there’ even when I felt totally out of my comfort zone. I spent countless hours working through the examination papers myself and developing a style that would help children achieve that magical skill of combining speed with accuracy in order to complete the test successfully. Not only did tuition pay pretty well but it was also very satisfying too.
At last, I could work on ‘my terms’.
Over time, I moved away from face-to-face tuitions to online tuition which has further enhanced my ability to earn on my own terms. Skype has opened up a whole world of opportunity and the sky really is the limit in terms of reach. Geographical location holds no restriction when you’re looking to tutor. I’ve been sat in the North West of England whilst my tutee is in Ireland. I’ve even had enquires from as far away as Dubai!
Online tuition and indeed tuition in general, has afforded me the opportunity to live, work and earn on my own terms. It has allowed me to ‘call the shots’ and at a time of financial uncertainty and as many people are having to work into their seventies and beyond, I know that as long as I keep my finger on the pulse and keep providing excellent value for money, tutoring can provide me with an income. It’s also very satisfying to know that I can do this from the comfort of my own home: no commute, no office politics, no clocking in and out. It’s all about your schedule working for you.
Could you be a tutor too?
This is a brilliant sideline for teachers who are still in the profession or indeed retired, students who can assist others doing the same course or graduates looking to find a way to earn money as they search for their career niche. I found my own particular niche in the 11+ as I got asked about tutoring all the different components of the 11+ test such as verbal and non-verbal reasoning which are topics not normally taught at primary schools.
What’s more, people are always on the lookout for tutors who can teach them all manner of subjects from languages to crafting skills. Your chosen tutoring topic doesn’t necessarily have to be academic in nature. We might live in an age where the robots are taking over but people will still always want people for the personal touch.
So, if you have the skills that people want then online tuition is a great way to earn a side income. It is definitely one of my most reliable and favourite side incomes and is something I intend to carry on with well into the future. It’s definitely a comfort knowing that it’s there to fall back on.
How you can set yourself up as an online tutor
When I was starting out, I actually found it quite difficult to source all the necessary information and resources I needed to set myself up online. In fact, it took me a very long time to get everything implemented and in place. Just finding a suitable online and interactive whiteboard that I could use for free took quite some time to track down.
Over time, I realised that other people seemed to be asking the same sort of questions about which software to use, how much to charge and how to stay organised both in terms of workload and also tax issues.
I decided that I wanted to help people get a foot in the door and so I created a free 6 week email course that shows you what I did to set myself up online and, more importantly, how to do it for free or for very little financial investment.
Whatever you do, diversification is key
Whatever you do though, diversification is absolutely the key to financial survival and happiness. We all live in a climate of financial uncertainty and to rely on one source of income is, for me, the definition of madness. The internet has opened up a whole world of options when it comes to ensuring we are able to live, work and earn on our own terms.
I still work as a lawyer but I mix my private tuition work with writing work and other side hustles such as competitions, matched betting and some Ebay selling. What’s more, I’m always on the lookout for new and exciting side hustles to help me to make money on my terms.
Here’s to life on your terms,
Rachel [a.k.a The Life Hack Tutor]