Jobs, Life

Taking a Second Job

So, you’ve secured a full-time job with health benefits, you’re living in your first apartment, and you even treat yourself to name brand products at the grocery store once in a while. Nothing can stop you now!

Then, the unthinkable happens. As you’re driving home from work debating which Bravo show you’ll watch that night (since you can afford cable now) you hear a loud BOOM! Your car starts to stall and smoke seeps out from under the hood. Suddenly, you’re faced with a 1,000+ dollar mechanic bill and wondering how quickly you can cancel your cable service to pay for everything. The Real Housewives will have to wait…

If you’re making an entry-level salary and completely supporting yourself, a hefty car bill is definitely going to put a dent into your budget. It’s for these reasons, life’s unexpected little accidents, that I decided to take on a second job last year. One night a week, I teach two little boys piano lessons. The whole process takes about three hours, including driving, and can make for a very long day after already working 8 hours. The plus side is that I’m able to put the money I earn from these lessons directly into a savings account, creating a safety net for myself to handle unexpected expenses.

Here are a few tips to consider if you’re thinking about taking a second job.

1.) If possible, make your second job something you like doing! I love playing piano and teaching piano is a much more enjoyable alternative than cleaning an office building one night a week. See if there’s a way to pursue your passion and get paid for it.

2.) Don’t completely burn yourself out. Taking a second job doesn’t mean you need work until 10pm every night or give up your whole weekend. Even working one night a week or one weekend morning can give you the opportunity to save up some extra cash. If you find that you need to work much more than that, it may be time to reevaluate your monthly budget or talk to your full-time boss about getting a raise.

3.) Don’t let the second job take priority over your day job. If it’s all you can do to keep your eyes open after a stressful day at the office, a second job might not be right for you at this time. Overextending yourself at night could potentially lead to a poor job performance the next day, which is something you definitely don’t want.

4.) Advertise that you’re looking for extra work. You’d be surprised how many office moms would kill for a night out with their husband and would love to hire a coworker they trust to watch their children. Or maybe your best friend runs the front desk at a salon and is looking to split her shift with someone. Connections are key, even when it comes to taking a second job.

What are your tips for post grads looking to take on a second job? Feel free to leave them in the comments!


About Allison

I'm a recent grad living and working in Austin, TX. I work full-time as an Online Content Manager by day and am a blogger/ part-time piano teacher by night. I love music, spending time outdoors, and exploring new places.


2 thoughts on “Taking a Second Job

  1. This is actually really interesting. I’m in month 8 of my entry-level job (woohoo!) and have suddenly been feeling striped for cash. Love the blog!

    Posted by ErikaAnn | February 22, 2012, 8:13 pm
  2. Get into a direct-sales, network-marketing opportunity. There are so many options out there, so there’s a “right fit” for everyone. By working your own business on a part-time basis, you create your schedule and you decide when you’re going to devote time to doing the income-producing activities that make you the extra cash. Your schedule can be different every week; it’s up to you. If there’s a Thursday night happy hour that you want to go to, but you’ve told yourself you would work your network-marketing business for 2 hours that evening after you got home from your day job…NO PROBLEM! Go to the happy hour and, instead, commit to making up those 2 hours on Saturday afternoon, or Sunday night, etc.
    That way you’re not stuck with a particular day of the week that you DREAD every time it rolls around, due to the fact that “Oh, it’s Tuesday again…I hate every single Tuesday because I know it’s gonna be a long one.” With your own business in a network-marketing opportunity, you decide how much time and energy you’ll put into it each week, and THIS decision is what will determine how much additional money you’ll make.

    I strongly encourage all readers, especially the “Gen-Y” people who are just now experiencing the post-grad world (I’ve been a post-grad since 2009), to consider a specific, ground-floor opportunity in the industry: partnering with the billionaire dermatologists who created Proactiv Solution, Drs. Rodan + Fields. Learn more about what *they* have set up via their success in redefining independent business ownership: visit

    Posted by strictlybickley | March 17, 2012, 6:26 pm

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