Side Hustle: Girl on the Go

Side Hustle - Girl on the Go | by The Luxi Look wearing Botkier Quincy Bag for Spring

Millennials are always on the move. Our mentality is “go, go, go” – and it’s not uncommon for us to have a job and a side hustle. We are seeing this everywhere. Most blogs are a side hustle. Maybe you have a jewelry business. Or freelance consult or write on the side. There are so many options and opportunities to have a side hustle these days.

My thoughts on this arrangement? I think self-improvement and growth are totally badass. I love people that are determined, passionate, and persistent. A little grit goes a long way.

I’ve really been trying to read more, tackling a long list of books to read that I recognized had a lot of self-help and self-improvement messages. (Not as boring as it sounds, I promise!!)

Side Hustle - Girl on the Go | by The Luxi Look wearing Botkier Quincy Bag for Spring

A common theme that came up in the books I read was the idea of a growth mindset vs. a fixed mindset. The belief that you can develop talents through hard work and persistence vs. the belief that talent is innate and to a certain extent, “fixed.”

What I found was that I didn’t always have a growth mindset. In fact, I had spent the better part of my life believing that my abilities and skills were “fixed” to a certain extent and out of my control to change. I had always thought of myself as “analytical, numbers oriented” and “not creative.”

This was a major wake-up call, and honestly when the blog was born. I was determined to prove to myself that I was creative and if I wasn’t great at flexing those muscles then, I would get better.

I was letting my mindset and self-perception get in the way of my own success.

So the blog has been my side hustle. I work full time and while sometimes it’s exhausting and overwhelming to do both, for the most part it’s been exciting, stimulating, and immensely rewarding.

Side Hustle - Girl on the Go | by The Luxi Look wearing Botkier Gianna

Why do I do both? For me, it’s yin and yang. My full-time job works one part of my brain and my blog the other. I get to build two very different skillsets: taking on challenges with the blog that I’m interested in, shaping every aspect of the creative direction, and learning new skills I otherwise wouldn’t have the opportunity to. I get to interact with different kinds of people and develop a deep understanding of very different industries.

To be honest, I like the combination and challenges of both.

Side Hustle - Girl on the Go | by The Luxi Look wearing Botkier Quincy Bag for Spring

The pros of having a side hustle:

+ A new challenge and something to learn from. You never know what opportunities might come out of it.

+ Learning new skills. Social media, digital marketing, content strategy, writing were all new to me before I started the blog. I’m learning so much every day, and it’s even helped shape my perspective on where I want my career to go in the long run.

+ Perspective. Having a side hustle has really opened my eyes in a way that working in a corporate environment never did (in a good way!).

+ Flexibility in the projects you take on and the kind of work you do. A lot of people dream of turning their side hustle into their job. What they fail to recognize is that doing something for fun vs. doing it for work/your main source of income is very different. When you have a side hustle, it’s purely a passion project that allows you to express yourself.

+ Extra income.

The cons of having a side hustle:

–  Say goodbye to your social life/sleep/other hobbies. I’d be lying if I said I was able to have and do it all. Social media is not reality. For every picture of me in an outfit drinking iced coffee, there are countless hours behind a desk in an office and working on a laptop at home. Not that glamorous! But having a side hustle requires some sort of sacrifice. There are only so many hours in the day.

– It can be distracting. Contrary to popular belief, multi-tasking really isn’t that great. In fact, it can be downright awful. When your brain is constantly jumping from one thought to another it can be next to impossible to do any one thing well. Staying focused through time blocking and prioritizing daily tasks has been essential for me.

– All of this can lead to emotional ups and downs. It’s hard not to compare yourself to other people and feel like you’re not doing enough in either job. The best advice I’ve come across is to just focus on yourself.

As for how I balance a job and a side hustle?

I try to do as much as I can, when I can. And I don’t beat myself up when I can’t.

Specifically: I’ll wake up an hour earlier or go to bed an hour later. I make my workouts more intense so I don’t have to go to the gym as often (think: high-intensity bootcamp or pilates on the megaformer 2-3x a week vs. the elliptical for an hour every day). I don’t say yes to every party, event, or happy hour invite. Some days I’ll get a lot done, other days I won’t do anything for my blog.

A little bit of effort goes a long way. Growing up, my parents would always tell me the Chinese saying, “constant dripping of water wears away the stone.” I’ve finally come to appreciate it. If you pour a bunch of water on a stone, it won’t change. But if you consistently drip water on it, over time, the stone will wear away. That’s what I’m going for.

The key word here really is “balance.” I never want to feel like I’m overwhelmed and stressed for prolonged periods of time. What I try to remind myself is that I’m in it for the long game. My career is going to be a marathon, not a sprint, and I have to pace myself if I want to make it all the way.

Eating well, getting enough sleep, yoga, and lots of “me time” are key for me to staying grounded and balanced.

I also have an amazing support system – which I really think is key! Behind every successful person, there’s a team. It really does take a village ; ).

Side Hustle - Girl on the Go | by The Luxi Look wearing Botkier Quincy Bag for Spring

And of course, blogging has forced me to be more put together (with the exception of mornings when I take my pup out at 6 am and some weekends when my style can be described in no other way than derelict) and conscious of my appearance. When I have more than 5 seconds to get dressed, I still try to keep it simple. Think: out the door in 5 minutes.

For spring, I am all about a white bag. Kinda risky, but I can’t help it – white is my absolute favorite color and nothing screams SPRING (or bridal) more than the color white.

Side Hustle - Girl on the Go | by The Luxi Look wearing Botkier Quincy Bag for Spring

Botkier has been a long time favorite brand of mine. I don’t have the budget for a closet full of Chanel but a good mid-range bag (think: between $100-$500) can be hard to find.

Botkier keeps is clean, simple, and chic. This crossbody is perfect for a girl on the go. Maybe a girl with a side hustle? Ha!

And, they just launched SHOES this spring! I am digging every pair in the new collection. Although I am absolutely horrible in heels, two things make them more bearable – a chunky heel and an ankle strap. This pair has both and I am in love.

Side Hustle - Girl on the Go | by The Luxi Look wearing Botkier Quincy Gianna

This look is perfect for brunch, no? Speaking of which – I’m off to make some avocado toast. Trying to make some changes to my diet, one of which is more healthy fats! You don’t have to ask me twice if I want more guacamole. Happy Sunday babes!

xx, Amy

two piece set: similar (more options below) | bag: botkier | shoes: botkier

47 Discussion to this post

  1. Loved this post babe! So true that we millennials always seem to be on the run and are balancing different activites/jobs. Interesting perspective on talents too, haha I need to read more about that. I know that I think my abilities within certain areas are fixed, though I’d like to improve. Perhaps I can change that?! Xx

    http://www.thefashionfolks.com

    • Amy Zhang says:

      Absolutely! I highly recommend the book “Mindset” by Carol Dweck (there’s also a much shorter TED talk that basically sums it up). Would love to hear your thoughts!

  2. Sabina says:

    I agree, it’s hard to balance everything out, but the excitement you get from running such a creative business pays off! 🙂
    As a side note, I LOVE the outfit pieces and the bag you chose for this post! Gorgeous, as always! xo

    Sabina | I’ve Got Sunshine

  3. Jenny says:

    Ah this post totally speaks to my heart! Despite whatever negative things people may say about us millienials, I think it’s incredible that so many of us are taking the initiative to pursue our passion, whether it’s side hustle or it becomes our full-time career. There’s definitely a lot of skills to be gained by having a side hustle, so it’s totally worth it, even with all the cons 🙂

    Anyways, love your outfit, it looks so casual yet still put together. Those shoes are gorgeous, and yes to chunky heels, the difference in comfort is huge!

    Jenny // Geeky Posh

    • Amy Zhang says:

      Yay! So glad you could relate to this Jenny! Agree that despite the criticism of millennials, most millennials I know are major hustlers and work their asses off! xx

  4. Didier says:

    Looking gorgeous! You are a trooper, doing both the blog AND a full time job. I ended up leaving my full time job a few months back to focus on the blog and it still feels a tad overwhelming sometimes. Totally respect you for being able to balance both!

    -Didier
    http://www.didieryhc.com

  5. Kathryn says:

    I loved reading this post, Amy! Your statement “Some days I’ll get a lot done, other days I won’t do anything for my blog” definitely resonated with me, as I’d also consider my blog my “side hustle” at this point. It really is all about balance, and recognizing I (we, us, every human, LOL) can’t – and probably shouldn’t – be doing it all. Love that you mention focusing on yourself, too, as it’s so easy to get caught up in comparisons. Thanks for this awesome post!

    Kathryn • simplykk.com

    • Amy Zhang says:

      Sooo happy you enjoyed this Kathryn! I don’t think anyone can do it all (if you can, can you please teach me how?!) and it’s unrealistic to paint a picture of myself as some kind of superwoman that can! Just trying to keep it real! I know I would feel discouraged sometimes seeing how much other people could “accomplish” in a day and feel unproductive, but have since recognized my own limits and how far I push myself before I become physically and mentally exhausted! Thank you for reading babe. xx

  6. You are such inspo Amy! I don’t know how you do it all and manage to be so down to earth and beautiful inside and out. I totally read that Mindset book and I am with you on the growth mindset. I think these days with all the technology we have at our fingertips we can learn to do just about anything and achieve our dreams. I love this entire spring look. I am a huge fan of white bags and this Botkier one is the perfect size. I love the texture too. Amazing striped jumpsuit and gorgeously styled with the b&w heels. Have a great week! xoxo, Christine
    http://dailykongfidence.com/

    • Amy Zhang says:

      Hi Christine! I loved the point you made about all the technology we have at our fingertips. It truly is remarkable! Thank you for your kind words and always bringing your warmth and positivity. It means so much to me xx

  7. Camila says:

    I love this look so much, those heels are gorgeous!

    Camila,
    My Vogue Style | http://www.myvoguestyle.com

  8. Jenn Wang says:

    Amy! This post is so encouraging, inspiring, and comforting all at the same time. You make blogging look so easy, but it’s reassuring knowing that you’ve had to make a lot of sacrifices along the way. It’s a perfect reminder that nobody is superhuman and there’s more than meets the eye. Thanks for the extra motivation. <3

    Jenn
    http://www.honeydewblog.com

    • Amy Zhang says:

      There is always more that meets the eye!! Nothing worth having is easy. If it’s easy, I don’t want it! Only half kidding haha. Glad to give you some extra motivation ; ) hope you’re having a great week so far! xx

  9. Jessica says:

    I totally believe that everyone needs a side hustle – and ps, this look is super cute!

    Blog | Bloglovin’ | Instagram

  10. Adelina says:

    Beautiful Amy! I love reading your posts! I love that you write so freely and express your feelings and emotions! Something I am just starting to open up on. But honestly girl, you are FIRE! And I have so much respect for your hard work and you HUSTLE just right!! It is insane how a passion project like this really takes away our free time, but like you said, it is also so rewarding! I am proud of you and I love your outfit and that white Botkier bag!! GORG! xx, Adelina

    http://www.thecharmingolive.com

  11. I love your outfit dear!!
    xx
    Mónica Sors
    MES VOYAGES À PARIS
    NEW POST: PFW STREET STYLE BEST OUTIFTS OCTOBER 2017

  12. Karen says:

    YAY to this! I work full time and side hustle on my blog as well 🙂 I like having the stability of a corporate job and the creativity and full control that comes with writing my own blog. Plus sometimes I have bad days at work and come home to great comments on my blog and sometimes its the other way around. Double the work but double the reward! Plus people seem to take a real interest in the fact that you have an interest that’s a bit different! Would love to chat more about what you do, etc. give me a buzz on Insta!

  13. Yvonne says:

    Love the shoes. Unfortunately the black and white are soldout!
    xo Yvonne
    http://www.aproposh.com

  14. You look absolutely stunning and this look is indeed perfect for brunch!! I love your tips and how this article is written, really helpful!! Thank you and hope you’ll have a wonderful week! Xx Susanne – http://bagatyou.com

  15. Rae says:

    I love these photos so much – this outfit is so effortlessly chic and looks put together but also super comfy! And yes I am all about the side (and main, for that matter) hustle! It’s all about smashing it for our generation, if you ask me!

    Rae | LFB Blogazine

  16. Catarine says:

    Amy i just loved this post. I really think that having a side hustle is great even if it takes a lot of focus to work out.
    I mean, as you said sometimes it’s overwhelming but at the end of the day it’s worth it.
    Talking about the outfit, i wish it was warm enough here to wear spring clothes. I just love the outfit, especially the white bag. So fab.
    Have a great week.
    lefashionaire.com

  17. Angelie says:

    I am digging your stripes jumpsuit babe! <3

    Angelie // Beauty MNL Haul + Shopping Experience

  18. Jalisa says:

    I wouldn’t have guessed this to be a two piece set, it looks like a jumpsuit, I love it! I also love those gorgeous sandals, too, which pair so well with the set. You’re right, nearly all of us have side hustles these days and like you’ve said, it has its pros and cons, but that’s like with anything else in life, nothing is pure bliss because well, life happens, haha. The books that you’ve been reading sound great and make some valid points. I remember hearing somewhere that Frank Sinatra didn’t even know how to sing at first, he was not naturally gifted, but instead took lessons and look, he’s a legend! I believe that there are things that we are naturally gifted out and then there are things that if we’d like to pursue, we have to just work harder at perfecting it than those things that are gifted or come natural. Thanks so much for sharing, beautiful, this is such an inspiring post. I hope you’re having a very Happy Monday so far!

    XO,

    Jalisa
    http://www.thestylecontour.com

  19. Jessi Malay says:

    Girl!! You look so good in this all-white outfit… its so perfect for spring! Seeing your photographs makes me more and more excited for spring 🙂

    XO Jessi,
    http://www.mywhitet.com/my-first-paris-fashion-week/

  20. Rina says:

    I love this post babe! I definitely like the idea of having a side-hustle and blogging is that for me. I also am focusing on finding more balance in my life this year and I feel like I’ve actually been able to achieve this. There are not enough hours in the day and I’ve realized this and made some personal sacrifices to achieve more balance and it has been great so far!

    xoxo
    Rina Samantha
    http://www.andshedressed.com

  21. Areli says:

    This white stripey two piece set is so perfect for spring and its so chic!
    xx,
    Areli’s April
    Areli’s April on Bloglovin

  22. Maggie says:

    I always feel like this blogging side hustle is difficult, but also very rewarding. I’m lucky to have a job where there’s a lot of flexibility in my schedule, but at the same time also giving me a lot of creative freedom to help grow the company. I’ve been actually trying to balance blog and work more by reducing blogging (in a very good way though). I’m focusing on quality collaborations over quantity. Really enjoyed this post!
    BTW my father in law uses that water drip proverb all the time. It’s so true!

    xoxo,
    Maggie S.
    ❤Clothestomidnight.com

  23. Camille says:

    Great post, thanks for sharing 🙂 I love this look, so stylish!

    Camille xo

    http://www.cococami.blogspot.co.uk

  24. Lisa Linh says:

    I love this post Amy! Growth mindset is def key, especially when it comes to being an entrepreneur. The pros and cons are totally on point as well, all good points. Also loving the outfit!

  25. Dylana says:

    You look so fresh, I love it!

    xx

    http://www.dylanasuarez.com

  26. Ashley says:

    I love your take on the side hustle- so true, it can be super rewarding, but it means saying good-byeeeee to downtime/much of your social life.

    Loooove this outfit, lady- how resort chic!

    -Ashley
    Le Stylo Rouge

  27. Mel says:

    This post is so well written! I totally understand both the pros and cons of having a side hustle since like you, I run my blog as well as work full time. Also, I would love to know what some of your favorite books are, I am trying to read more as well 🙂

    http://www.pennyanddash.com

  28. Krissy says:

    Love this girlfriend! So so true, great advice. It can be overwhelming but it is definitely so worth it at the end of the day, whether you got nothing done or everything 🙂

    x krissy

  29. Julie says:

    Good read babe! I’m totally with ya on the side hustle…I’m a full time interior designer and when I started my blog back in 2010 it was really just an additional creative outlet that had nothing to do with clients/ daily demands… Just a place for me to write and grow. But now the blogosphere is a totally different ballgame and I’m just playing catch up! More of these please!

    Thank you for visiting babe- Hope to see you back for my latest!

    Xx- Julie | Haute Khuuture Blog

  30. Yasmin says:

    Loved reading this post, I agree that when I started blogging on the side, I felt so much compassion that I never felt when I was in the office. The countless hours spent reading about blogging has allowed me to learn new skills and abilities that as a computer beginner, I could not fathom. Thanks for the inspiring post!

    xo,
    I AM YASMIN

  31. Kay says:

    Love this post so much, Amy!! My blog is my side hustle as well, and I can attest that sometimes I get a lot done and some days nothing really lines up and I just want to curl up in a ball under a rock. It can be challenging to balance a full time job with a style blog because it’s hard to look fresh and jump in 3 outfits after 5:30pm, when you already worked for 10 hours and all you want to do is chill. Plus, the light for good photos is so limited, especially during winter, when it gets dark while I’m still at the office = no light, so I have to take all my photos during the weekend. Or if I’m really ninja, during lunch break, but it kinda sucks being rushed when trying to be creative.

    Much love <3
    xoxo
    http://www.styleunsettled.com

    • Amy Zhang says:

      Hey babe! Totally feel you on limited lighting. Have you ever tried shooting before work? I usually do outfit shoots early morning. The AM “golden hour” is just as good as the evening, and there’s no people around! xx

  32. Elizabeth says:

    Really loved this post Amy! As a girl working in the corporate marketing world full time, having a side hustle can sometimes be exhausting, but just like you, I believe in constantly chipping away at the stone, little by little, everyday. It’s a lot of hard work, but in the end, our side hustles are worth it! 🙂 <3 Thank you for sharing such an inspirational message in this OOTD post! BTW – love the shoes and bag! Hope you're having a great weekend love!

    XO, Elizabeth
    http://clothestoyouuu.com/

  33. You look so stunning! I would wear all these things and I love your beachy waves!!

    Xx, Hannah
    http://www.beaconthrills.com

  34. […] to charge for a freelance service. As you might already know, I’m a huge proponent of the side hustle. But outside of your typical corporate career, how do you get paid? And how much? I feel like […]

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