Side Hustle, from idea to income in 27 days [Book review]

Posted by in Books

In the late weeks of 2016, I (re)discovered author Chris Guillebeau. Once upon a time, I had read The $100 Startup : Fire Your Boss, Do What You Love and Work Better To Live More. But, somehow, I had never paid much attention to its author. Until one day I landed on Chris’ blog: The Art of Non-Conformity. One thing leading to the next, I was soon a regular listener of his podcast Side Hustle School, and I had signed-up to attend his event that summer in Portland, OR.

Needless to say, I’m a fan. I do love the no-bullshit, no non-sense, and very practical approach Chris has on making a living. I also deeply appreciate his honesty and simplicity. So, as my first read of 2018, I thought his last opus: Side Hustle: From Idea to Income in 27 Days would be a an excellent candidate.

Can you really build a side hustle in 27 days?

To be totally honest, I don’t think so.

If I appreciate the concept of streamlining a series of action-steps to help people leave the comfort of their own head and actually start to « do something » about moving their project forward, the promise seems a little far stretched.

The books is segmented in approximately 5 weeks of daily objectives designed to take you from zero to income-generating side hustle. If the first week is action-packed and simple enough to ease the reader into « doing », things start to become more difficult to grasp after day 7.

When I tried to apply the model to The Vagabond Monkey, I got stuck on day 7 for a while. This is when the idea starts to become concrete. And it only gets worse on day 9 where the objective is really to go from idea to product. Turns out, this can take a little more than a day for most humans. From there, my test took weeks, the project is still under construction while I’m done reading the book.

Each day/step is illustrated with a life-exemple of someone who created a side-hustle. As a very faithful listener of the podcast, I had already heard most of the stories before. That also took a bit of excitement out of reading the book. But they’re a great inspiration for anyone who is looking for a business or side-hustle idea. As it turns out, I use the podcast and the stories a lot to spark students’ brains in some of the entrepreneurship / creativity classes I teach.

Overall, while it will probably take you a lot more than 27 days to reach the level of advancement in your project described in the last days of the book, all the different steps are very relevant and very well described. It’s a great support and a source of smart, down-to-earth, advice for the side-hustler wannabe.

Now I would be curious to see what the first 27 days of a side-hustle generation really look like… Something to think about…

Photo by Garrhet Sampson on Unsplash