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Inflation Nation Series: Making Extra Money

Updated: Jul 16, 2022

There are several ways to try to beat the rising inflation's assault on your finances, but if it were all really that simple, everyone would already have the answer right? You could scour through hundreds of blogs and articles and find maybe some tips and tricks that will shave off the edges a little bit, but there's pro's and cons to all of them, or you're already doing them, or they're completely irrelevant to you. Check out what works and might not work for you below:


Side gigs have supplemented peoples' income for decades but only in the last several years have they really been popularized through platforms such as Doordash or Uber. Here are some pro's and con's to side gigs


  1. Side gigs create flexibility most of the time so you can work it in to your schedule on your terms, unlike your main job that probably has set hours.

  2. There are several industries where you can utilize your skills or do a task that requires little skill and still make decent side cash. These might be a delivery service as mentioned above, transportation service also mentioned above, being a brand ambassador for beers/wines/spirits with Pourtastic, creating crafts and selling them on Etsy, finding thrift store items and reselling them on Ebay, starting your own business doing odd jobs like dog walking on or house cleaning, and this list could literally go on much longer. But as you can see, side gigs offer a wide variety of ways to monetize your time.

  3. You don't have to "answer" to a boss most of the time. Side gigs are often contract jobs, so while you do still have responsibilities and professionalism as well as company policies to follow, you really don't have someone breathing down your neck about every little thing.

  4. Some people have more fun doing their side gig than their real job, and you might unlock something in yourself that you didn't realize was there.


  1. Side gigs often involve some level of pay by the hour. Sure, Uber might pay by the job/distance and how many people are carpooling, but it still involves setting apart time out of your day to do another job. Not everyone has that availability or even energy. And if you know you're getting paid by the hour and not the job, you can't leverage your skill to increase how much you make in those pockets of time, so if you make $20/hr, it will always usually be that. If your side gig involves selling items online you can have more control over this, but there's still a decent amount of time that goes into setting up an online store, taking the pictures, writing descriptions, etc. that you are still having to rely on the availability of your time and energy.

  2. There's often no raises or bonuses. You're usually contracted OR you're your own boss, so you don't get to turn around and just ask for more money unless you're dealing with products/made at home crafts that you can up the price a little bit to give yourself a raise.

  3. Taxes. Whether it's your Etsy store, being a brand ambassador for beer/wine or owning your own business, you're going to have to claim that money on your taxes and pay more due to self-employment tax. At a regular job, your taxes, social security, and Medicare are already taken out for you. But for contract work or your own business, you have to calculate that yourself and hope you paid enough. If you don't pay quarterly, you may come across some minor fines. It's just a little more work on the tax front, and everyone hates taxes.

  4. You'll burn out. Even if the gig is fun, you're going to hit the grind pretty hard almost every day. Some people are fine with that and more power to you. But if you're noticing after a few months or a couple years that you're running thin on pep for life, check and see if it has to do with not having enough you time and "balance." Your side gig could be affecting your mental health (or your real job could be--in which case, find another job).


If you have a special skill in art, playing an instrument, DJ'ing, wood work, or anything like that you can consider using your special skills as a way to generate income. Here's some pros and cons to that you may want to consider:


  1. If you're using a special skill, chances are it's a hobby you enjoy and may even derive personal enjoyment when taking on gigs or projects. That can be one way to find fulfillment and make money at the same time. Double win!

  2. Gigs don't have to be hard to find. with sites like Upwork, or even finding gigs on Craigslist, you can find work pretty quickly. If you live in a smaller town, check larger metropolitan areas closest to you if your special skill doesn't have to be bound by distance.

  3. Much like a side gig, you're going to be in charge of a lot here, and able to walk away for a set up that doesn't work for you.

  4. You get to set the price, unlike side gigs where you're contracted by a company and are paid a set hourly wage, and if your skill involves sellable products then your income is dependent more on how much you can sell instead of how many hours you worked.


  1. No one said skilled work had a steady flow of demand. Where do you think the term "starving artist" came from? There may be times that your work doesn't sell at all and you can't rely on that flow of income. It's better to use it as extra savings for a rainy day instead of including it as regular cashflow for your budget.

  2. People don't value skilled work the way they should. If you look at some gigs on Craigslist, some pay well and some people, well, should just have had their toddler do the job if they were going to pay so little. Some people want your skilled work for their own projects, but because they're starting up from the bottom too, they want to pass off the burden of cost to you with posts like, "I just can't pay a lot so I need someone to do this cheap." Don't ever settle for being called cheap.

  3. This route may require time up front to really get started; time spent finding the gigs/projects, time spent completing or preparing work, etc. Which means it goes back to looking at your time and energy as a resource that's being expended.

  4. There's a few sites that will help you find gigs, but ultimately you're your own marketing manager. That means navigating your industry of skill in a way that may be above your head at first and may require some extra knowledge and experience before you start seeing benefits.


Residual income is the golden chariot of freedom everyone in our nation is seeking. Residual income, once a thing only enjoyed by millionaires living off the dividends of their investments, is something that everyone has started trying to leverage. It's so popular to seek out residual income opportunities that MLM (multi-level-marketing) schemes have exploited this term to prey upon the middle/lower middle class citizens into signing up for their "team" and getting others to sign up for their "team." We've all been there. Here's some pros and cons.


  1. Residual income is literally making money sitting on your sweet round ass. That is a pro that outshines all pros aforementioned.

  2. Residual income opportunities are becoming more prevalent, though the cons list has a lot to say about this too.

  3. If you find a source of residual income that offsets a lot of your living expenses, you could step down to doing your side gig job only, which would be pretty dang nice.

  4. If you keep your regular job, which you can, and do your side gig if you want (or you don't have to) and you ALSO have a source of residual income, you can really leverage that extra money into retirement. Talk about making up for years of poor financial decisions right?


  1. The reason residual income sounds too good to be true isn't because it is all bad. It sounds too good to be true because legitimate residual income sources are hard to find and may require significant up front cost. If you had land and could lease it for wind energy or solar energy, you can make bank off that, but you would have had to already have 10's of acres of land which isn't cheap. If you used your home for Airbnb or got into real estate investment, you still had to have a home to begin with that you could spare that space for.

  2. No one's spreading any secrets about residual income. There's a reason for this. If everyone hopped on the train for residual income (and trust me, we all want that and would if we could) then that just creates more competition for that income. No one wants to compete on snagging that cashflow.

  3. It's easy to get caught up in some residual income opportunities like MLM schemes. Look, you could be a complete boss with MLM, so if you have the up front money to get started and won't break the bank giving it a shot, then go for it. But if it doesn't seem like your thing, then just be honest with yourself and don't feel bad or feel like you're missing out on something. MLM companies like to make YOU feel like YOU'RE missing an opportunity if you don't sign up. But it's not true. You're just saving yourself the heartache of getting involved in something you don't really have the spirit for. They'll find their people, and it doesn't have to be you.

  4. Some residual income opportunities will still, like other opportunities, require some up front cost, time and energy. Blogging or drop shipping for example are potential sources of residual income that are completely legitimate and can be rewarding. You just have to put up the front end work like a boss and not see any rewards from the beginning until you finally break through. This route is not for the faint of heart.


Everyone should be investing even their pocket change if they can, if not on a robo-investing platform at least through their company's retirement if they offer it (in fact, this is recommended). Investing can look like letting someone manage your portfolio or it could mean playing the game of buying and selling all on your own. Here's some pros and cons.


  1. Investing has its risks, but no one would be doing it if it never returned extra money. Investing works, and while it may require some education or research, you'll thank yourself in 20 years.

  2. It doesn't require much emotional energy or time. You sign up for a portfolio or sign up when your work does its round of benefits, and you're done. This is a kind of residual income that you don't have to do anything at all for but, as stated before, sit on that sweet round ass.

  3. Investing is more accessible than ever. Through robo-investor platforms like Robinhood or Wealthfront, you can open up an account real quick and get started immediately. You can even look at real estate investing through Fundrise, which with the housing and renting markets as they are, may not be a bad place to leverage your money.

  4. If someone is managing your portfolio, you're likely to make money over time. You'll have to weather the dips in the market, but their goal is to make you money, and they know what they're doing. If you're managing your own portfolio, you probably have more of a chance at gaining wealth than winning the lottery. Some might be small, but some might be BIG. Buying and selling at the right times matters, and if you do it right, you could be buying your new boat next month (please though, that's unrealistic).


  1. If you're managing your own portfolio, you are going to be taking a lot of risks and if you don't know what you're doing or what your plan was, you're more likely to lose a lot of money overall even if you gain a lot at some point. So make sure you read up on what you need to do to navigate the market.

  2. Investing is a long term strategy. The only way you're making several extra thousand dollars a month or year is if you put in a lot to begin with, at which point you're not actually reading this article because you're not worried about making money to survive inflation. Investing is planting the tree that you're going to enjoy the shade in a couple decades.

  3. There's no guarantees even if someone else is managing your portfolio. There's always a disclaimer that you shouldn't invest more than you can afford to lose. While investing does work, not everyone gets lucky or maybe that point which you need to withdraw money for an emergency end up happening around a dip in the market.

  4. While you're sitting on that sweet round ass, you could have been crafting gift boxes or signing up for a transcriptionist side gig and making guaranteed money. Because the only guaranteed money there is is the kind you work for or found that golden cash cow. Even then, you just never know--but at least other forms of residual income and other forms of cashflow with services can give you more assurances that you're going to be adding to your savings account and not losing.

This Inflation Nation series will keep looking for great ways to make money, so stick around for future posts to see if we find that cash cow you were looking for! Share with other vixens at the forum how YOU make your extra cash or how you're navigating this inflation craze.


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