Balancing Self-Care With Your Side Hustle

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Starting a side hustle is a great way to earn some extra money to supplement your regular income, do something more exciting with your life, or even set up a scalable income stream for retirement. However, side hustles, while lucrative, are time-consuming. Added on top of your regular job, they can eat into your (already-thin) spare time. In extreme cases, they may take up all your time, making you neglect your health and causing you to burn out eventually. 

You need to be of sound health to keep your side hustle going (not to mention your main job and life in general). As such, prioritize your well-being and give yourself the care you need and deserve. In this mini-guide, we offer some suggestions on how you can balance self-care with your side hustle:

Don’t sacrifice your sleep 

Healthy adults need 7 to 9 hours of sleep every night. Not getting enough sleep will drain your energy, make you cranky, reduce your focus, and even lead to burnout. Get plenty of sleep, preferably at the same time every night.

Relax and reduce stress 

When you’re juggling a side hustle with a main job, not to mention relationships and other life challenges, you’re going to be stressed. Stress is hard on the body – it causes pain in your muscles and joints and may lead to physical problems as well as mental imbalances. Learn to relax to reduce stress. Spend time in nature, start journaling, listen to music, do something fun, talk to nice people, and meditate.  

Exercise enough 

The human body needs at least 30 minutes of moderate or 15 minutes of intense exercise a day, says Harvard Health Publishing. It’s the best way to prevent a host of health conditions, from heart attacks to dementia. Some holistic forms of exercise are yoga, swimming, and Pilates.   

Eat nutritious food 

You may be tempted to binge on junk foods when you work – favor nutritious, green, high-quality foods instead. Good food has a host of benefits like giving you tons of energy, boosting your mood, and allowing you to focus better. You can treat yourself to not-so-healthy food once in a while, but be sure to limit consumption.  

Make your business more efficient to save time and energy

Making your business more efficient is a no-brainer and something you should prioritize. The more efficient your business is and better you manage your time, the less energy and time you need to invest in its upkeep and maintenance. Some ways to make your side hustle more efficient are to automate, delegate, learn productivity-boosting tricks, and eliminate distractions. 

Clean, organize, and de-clutter your home 

Your home environment, seeing as you spend so much time there, has a massive effect on your body, mind, and emotions. When it’s cluttered, dirty, and messy, it’s going to take away from your health. When it’s clean, organized, and neat, it will make you feel better and contribute to your wellbeing. Adequately care for your home so it can care for you. 

Schedule smart 

As a side hustler, you may be tempted to “maximize” every hour and minute of your day for productivity. Maximizing can be counter-productive, though. Things go wrong all the time – you need time (and energy) to troubleshoot problems. Furthermore, not having any breathing room between tasks leads to major stress. There’s truth to the Zen saying “The slow way is the fast way.”  When you schedule your day (or week), make sure you leave time enough between tasks. 

Have firm boundaries 

Having firm boundaries is critical for your continual mental, emotional, and physical wellbeing. Not having boundaries will lead to you biting off more than you can chew, trying to accommodate everything (and everyone), and consequently burning out quickly. Come up with a measured, sustainable pace and then stick to it.


Do you live to work or work to live? Only you can understand that question. Regardless of what you choose, it’s important to not go overboard with the work – you’re not a machine and need downtime and care. There’s no point in making money if you develop health problems and can’t enjoy the fruits of your labor. Balance is the key to continued success (and enjoyment)!

Image via Unsplash


Courtney started Gig Spark to be a resource and the first step for people who are looking to join the gig economy, either to supplement their income or as a way to fulfil their dreams of becoming an entrepreneur.