Tag Archives: second jobs

Along Comes a Baby and More

Two weeks ago I spent Saturday afternoon at the baby shower of a long time friend. Sometimes, it’s really hard for me to believe just how long I’ve known this young lady, because she was only 13 years old when we first met. I’ve watched her grow up; become successful in not one, but several careers in her young life; fall in love, get married, and now…prepare to have her first baby!

In spite of how long it’s been since I first met her, I was still truly honored to be remembered and invited to her baby shower; as well being at her wedding, and the weddings and baby showers of her sisters. And after 23 years of having the pleasure of our professional relationship, what matters more is the lasting personal friendship.

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In addition to hanging out with her though, I ran into some other ladies who I’ve met in the same circles over the years. What is so cool about that? I realized at some point in the afternoon that we were all talking about our business, ministries, and professional activities we were engaged in.

Since starting Catching Raindrops in Water Buckets, I’m always on the look out for finding young teens, college students, and women who are taking control of their financial futures by creating, developing, designing, and running their own businesses now, and not waiting for some magical moment to descend. So whether it’s service-oriented, consulting, talent-driven, beauty and fitness, health care, or even the entertainment industry that I myself am a part of, when my friends and former associates start branching out on their own, I want to be a major cheerleader, to help spread the word, as well as sharing any knowledge and suggestions I might have in any given area.

As I sat there listening as we caught up with one another, I took note of one young lady who said she’d been really busy lately working, but primarily for other people. She had been a Work for Hire with another company, but the content was totally hers. She said she was ready to take control over her brand. I knew she was right. She DID need to take over her own brand.

Another lady chimed in moments later, and said she’d been running her own company for almost a year, but was having financial challenges due to her lack of discipline with her money. I was impressed at her honesty. Since she was a single mother, she knew how important it was to get control over that area of her life, not just for the sake of growing her business, but for her family. I asked a few direct questions and uncovered at least a large part of the problem. For her, she was spending way more money picking up meals on the way home, rather than going shopping and preparing them at home.

It can be very tempting to take the safe way out — like working for someone else and picking up a pay check. Or the easy way out — like running through the drive-thru on the way home. But in the end, it almost always costs you more money. Being a Work for Hire, might be a way in to getting business, but it should be just that — a way to get in, not a means to stay in. Otherwise, your talent, and hard work is building someone else’s company and bank account. And at the end of each month, stopping by restaurants and fast food chains might seem economical, and definitely convenient, but the money adds up. Where you see only spending $10.00 on dinner tonight, it becomes $50.00 by the end of the week, which quickly adds up to $200.00 or more by the end of the month. And that doesn’t include the groceries that you DO buy for the other meals of the day. The reality is that smart shopping and creative meal planning will cost you a lot less than pizza, a bucket of chicken, or four kids’ meals a few times a week.

As I’ve said many times before, planning is the key. Whether you’re planning how to branch out on your own, build your own business, create a secondary source of income; or planning how best to save money for your family on meals and other household items, the main part of the process is the Plan.

When’s the last time you’ve asked yourself about your Life Plan? Do you have one? Where do you want to be this time next year? What about five years from now? Ten? Have you even given thought to what your financial situation will be when you’re ready to retire? What happens if you lose your job years before that retirement time?

There are a lot of questions we prefer not to think about; after all, we’re young, or perhaps already well off; or we think our job will last forever. But the truth is that we can’t control what the future holds. Things happen. Life happens. But we can begin to plan for various outcomes so that we are better prepared, should something unexpected come our way.

Why not grab a journal, and take a few moments to ask yourself some of these questions. Then step away, and come back to your answers later. Are they what you think they should be, or what you want them to be?

Think about that, and let’s talk more about it later.

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Welcome Back!

Yes. Welcome Back to Catching Raindrops in Water Buckets. That’s what I tell myself every winter and summer break when I actually have the time to devote more attention than just a Facebook post (find us and join our group on Facebook — catchingraindropsinwaterbuckets) or make a Pinterest share(https://www.pinterest.com/ggproverbs31/catching-raindrops-in-water-buckets/). The conversation doesn’t end when I’m not here. I’m just having it multiple other places too; places where I can drop in briefly, share a tip or two; give out a challenge to those ladies who are, like me, still trying to find, secure, and grow our place in this world amidst the changes, and sometimes, challenges of our “new normal.”

My New Normal included transitioning from a Talent Agent, to starting my own business (gloriagreenentertaiment.com) to now being a full-time college Professor. My job requires more of my time than I at first imagined, as well as much of my physical and mental energy — as working with older teens and young adults often does. And as much as I love what I do and the impact I’m having on college students interested in the Recording Industry, I strive to be careful to take my own advice, from personal experiences and the experiences of other women I’ve watched having to transition in their jobs, martial status, and other life changes. I don’t ever want to be in “that place” again where I rely soley on another entity or someone else’s financial ups and downs.

In the sporting world, a team’s Offense often gets most of the glory when they win a game. But the truth of the matter is that it doesn’t matter how many points the team puts on the scoreboard, if the Defense isn’t keeping the other team from scoring just as many (or more) points, then there would not be a win. As is often said, “the best offense is a good defense!” That’s how we have to approach our life…our jobs, our finances, our relationships…It’s not just about how well you’re doing what you do but also, how well you prepare for what you may end up having to do, even if it wasn’t originally in your playbook of where you saw yourself coming into the “game.” As I’ve said many times before,

Life is full of unexpected surprises and unplanned stops in the middle of places you never imagined yourself ending up. And while we can’t control all of the circumstances that may happen to us, we can control how well prepared we are to take them on when they happen.

So with that reminder to myself, as well as all of you, I now go back to working on the other parts of who I am. I’ve dusted off the water buckets, and put them back out around the “yard,” ready to catch the raindrops during this rainy season so that I am prepared, and able to survive the next dry spell, when/if it comes again.

What about you? Do you even own any water buckets?

Camp Stacy – Part I

How does someone who’s allergic to dogs, and allergic to most of the allergens outdoors, end up in a dog sitting and dog walking business?

That’s a good question. But to uncover the answer, you’d have to first go back many years to learn more about the type of person who would do just that. You would need to know who is Stacy Hostetler?

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Born and raised in Shipshewana, IN, Stacy started dreaming about living in Nashville before she was in high school. “I got into country music as a teenager, and followed several artists and their music,” said Stacy. “I always wanted to go to Fan Fare and to see some of the artists I was listening to.” Unlike most people who dream of moving to Nashville for the country music scene, Stacy wasn’t interested in becoming a singer or a songwriter. She just wanted to be closer to the people who were.

After graduating from high school, Stacy went to a small college in Kansas, but then left before finishing to move to New Jersey where she became a nanny for a year. After making friends with another nanny in the area, Stacy followed her then roommate to Nebraska where she lived for another year before returning to Kansas for four months. “I was just unsettled. There were things I was trying to run away from but the Lord kept following me.”

Although Stacy still felt drawn to Nashville, she returned home to Wisconsin instead where she lived with her parents (who had moved there several years earlier) for over four years, before moving on to Madison for another five years.  It was during that time when Stacy’s restlessness forced her to stop running, and to start listening. “I started praying and seeking God for clear direction. I didn’t want to have any regrets; I didn’t want to look back years later and have regrets about never going to Nashville.”

So in May 2006, Stacy packed her bags and headed for Tennessee, without a job, without a real plan for what she was going to do, and with knowing only one person. It only took Stacy a month to find a job; start attending a new church; and meeting new friends.  And it was through these new friends that her business idea began to develop. But not before, and perhaps even because of, some financial struggles along the way.

Shortly after Stacy met her new friend Stephanie, she was introduced to Stephanie’s best friend, Judge, a black lab. Before long, Stacy found herself dog sitting Judge on a pretty regular basis. “It’s strange, because it’s not something I really set out to do; it just happened, and I found that despite my allergies, I loved doing it.”

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Word spread quickly about Stacy’s service and availability to not just sit with people’s dogs in their absence, but to take care of them as she would her own. Before long, she had several regular clients and through word of mouth, was being introduced to new ones.

He says, “Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.”  Psalm 46:10

Being paid to dog sit wasn’t just a hobby for Stacy. It was an answered prayer. “I’ve had a few rough years financially; just not making good choice with my expenses, and being really bad at budgeting,” said Stacy. “But last year (2012) I really struggled trying to get back on my feet back; get them steady.” Realizing she was barely making ends meet at her job, Stacy prayed about getting a second job. She asked God to provide her with something that she would enjoy doing.

“I’d spent plenty of time in my 20s working two jobs to pay bills, so I didn’t want to get another job just for the sake of having that second income,” Stacy shared. “Back then, I was always tired, and I grew to be mean, and maybe even mad at everyone and everything. I was always working, sleeping, or going between the two jobs. I didn’t want that again.”

While in the middle of praying to see where God would lead her, Stacy had not yet realized that God was answering her prayer faster than she could speak them. Right there in front of her was everything she’d asked for – a job that she loved, with great flexibility, and the extra money to help make her budget each month.

Without realizing it, Camp Stacy: A Dog Sitting, Dog Walking Business was born! But that was just the beginning of Stacy’s answered prayer, and just the start of her new journey. God had so much more in store for her.

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Come back here next week for part 2 of Camp Stacy with Stacy Hostetler!

Creating a Revenue Stream for Your Life

I teach in the Recording Industry department at a local university. One of the classes I teach is called Music Survey. It explores the three main revenue streams of the music industry. The first time I taught the class was as an Adjunct Professor. I was working full-time with my own company, and teaching three courses. As I read through the book to prep for class each week, I was reminded of something I’d promised myself almost three years earlier. When I left my former job, I told myself I would never again work for just one company unless it was my own. And at the point that I decided to launch Gloria Green Entertainment, I also decided then that I would seek out multiple means of earning an income, so that no one thing could ever be pulled out from underneath me again.

As I was teaching students about the various ways to generate revenue, and stressing the importance of creativity and diversity in those streams, I continued to seek out multiple sources of income earnings myself. And while my age may put me on the forgotten line for those of us born in the 1960s, frequently left out of true marketing, psychological, or social demographic studies – other than being referred to as the Me Generation, thanks in part to the success of the Michael J Fox Pepsi campaign, and a series of Brat Pack movies from the 1980s, my mindset and lifestyle plants me firmly on a different line – that of the entrepreneurial-minded Gen Xer and tech-loving world of the Millennials.

So as a woman; especially a single woman, I have made it a point to try to encourage my friends to seek out opportunities to turn their hobbies and passions into a means of financial reward, while keeping their day-jobs. It is the spirit of Catching Raindrops in Water Buckets; and it is becoming the necessity of adjusting to your new normal. In the wake of five years of financial instability, where job security is a phrase of the past, seeking entrepreneurial opportunities just makes sense. And no, you don’t have to put together a 10-page business plan; you don’t have to have an MBA; you don’t even have to know how to run a business, although understanding how to balance a checkbook would definitely come in handy. What you do need is passion, a drive for hard work, and to surround yourself with good friends who will help you realize your dream, and maybe even come along side you in it.

I know talented women who have various abilities and skills that they could monetized, but they’re afraid of the idea of running their own business. That’s not to say that starting a company is easy and everyone should do it. Quite the contrary. Way too many first-year companies never make it past a few years. My challenge to my female friends isn’t about quitting their day jobs and giving up their profit share, 401-k, and retirements to chase a dream. It’s more about extending your ability to realize your dream by starting something more – like those incredible cookies you bake and give away as Christmas gifts every year that no one can stop talking about; those birthday cakes you decorate for your family, and every year more friends ask you to make some for theirs; the homemade cards you make from recycled paper; or the soaps you make using your own garden herbs. You love giving them away, but there are people out there who wouldn’t mind paying to have them.

I have friends who offer services ranging from copyediting to house sitting; and those who taught themselves new skills, like web design and photography. Even the ability to help others get organized can be turned into a nice side business.

So over the next few weeks, I’m going to share some stories of women; average, everyday women I know, who for various reasons, have taken a talent, a passion, or just a desire to do something else, and created a secondary stream of income; some out of need, some out of want, but all are growing a new business for themselves.

Perhaps you’re one of those people; someone who has created something more than the 9 to 5 job that pays the mortgage. Maybe you’ve gone from a two-income family to a one and you had to find another means of support for the family; perhaps you’re one of thousands of people who are currently underemployed, working at a job earning much less money than you were 3, 4, or 5 years ago. Creating another income source helps to close the financial gap. Maybe you’ve had several unexpected bills – after all, life happens – and the salary you have barely covers the bills you’ve created. Or maybe, like me, you’ve been burnt before, and never want to rely on only one income source. Whatever drove you to the desire to start something new, I’d love to hear from you here, or follow us and share the link to your website on our Twitter page @CatchingtheRain.