Don’t quit your day job… Yet!

by Nick on December 30, 2013

I quit messageAre you an artist?

Great! Me too!

I’m in the middle of writing two books and outlining a third. (Yeah… I know… I should focus on one at a time.)

But don’t forget that to some people you’re more than an artist.

I, for example, am a Dad, Brother, Son, and grandson.

At least to my kids, I’m an inspiration, a role model, an example.

To my wife, I’m a partner, friend, source of income and co-leadership.

And to “Old Me,” I’m an opportunity.

An opportunity to do things now that will make things easier for Old Me later.

So I work a day gig.

Fortunately for me, I enjoy it.

But what if you don’t?

What if you are an artist who dreads Mondays?


You don’t quit.  At least not yet.

Get your hustle going and bringing in some serious cash in early mornings or late at night.

Make sure you have the juices – and money – flowing.

Because you can’t eat your art.  

(Unless, of course, your art is food.  Then, of course, you can eat your art.  But if you eat all your art you’ll have nothing left to sell.  So this still applies to you.  Ha!  #LogicBomb)

Maybe it’s just time to find new work – work that you love!

But unless you already have stable and substantial income from your side hustles that you can live off of and predict into the future, you could be doing yourself and others a disservice by quitting.  

Follow the likes of other artists like Robert Frost, who continued to work in a factory in Massachusetts when he sold his first poem and then had stints working on a farm and as a lecturer and professor after he become one of the most successful writers in the world.

Are you aching to leave your day gig to pursue your art?

How will you know it’s time?  



Please note that links are affiliate links and I could earn a commission if you buy products through those links.  That doesn’t change any of my thoughts or opinions, but helps support this blog, which as you can imagine takes a lot of time and some money to keep going!

{ 28 comments… read them below or add one }

Mike Collins December 30, 2013 at 10:49 am

Quitting my day job is definitely part of my long-term plan, but with a family to support I can’t just walk out. Instead, I focus on building up my side gig until I can live on that income.


Nick December 30, 2013 at 1:38 pm

Awesome, Mike! Love the hustle and commitment to your family. I’m with you!


Elroy December 30, 2013 at 11:10 am

I’m looking to shed the rat race. My income from my job is so good right now, I don’t believe in the “side hustle(s).” I focus my time on what I enjoy outside of work and let the chips fall where they may.

My side hustle is my nest egg. I just defined it today in a blog post.


Nick December 30, 2013 at 1:40 pm

Cool stuff, Elroy. There are certainly more than one way to bake a cake! (was going to say crack a nut, but cakes are tastier…)



Moneycone December 30, 2013 at 11:58 am

Behind the glamor there is a lot of hard work! Look at both before deciding!


Nick December 30, 2013 at 1:45 pm

Yep – So many people see successful folks and forget about all the hard work and sacrifice it took them to get where there are.


The First Million is the Hardest December 30, 2013 at 10:02 pm

I’d love to leave my day job behind, but I don’t think that will be happening any time soon. I really envy those who have built up enough income on the side that they’re able to do it though!


Nick January 1, 2014 at 6:35 am

It’s a cool position to be in, I imagine. But with the right discipline it’s only a question of when, not “if.” 🙂


Michael | The Student Loan Sherpa December 31, 2013 at 7:13 am

Very sound advice. Plus, a day job is more than just a paycheck. It (hopefully) has benefits such as health insurance and retirement. It is hard to let these things go.


Nick January 1, 2014 at 6:33 am

Thanks Michael! It sure is. And until you got enough of the other stuff covered you can be in for a rude awakening if you quit too soon.


Holly@ClubThrifty December 31, 2013 at 7:54 am

I quit my day job in April of this year, but only after I had replaced my full income with side jobs. It was a tough decision but I’m glad I made it. My life is better and a lot less complicated now =)


Nick January 1, 2014 at 6:32 am

Very cool! Congratulations, Holly!


Poor Student January 2, 2014 at 9:25 am

I’m not an artist but it would be nice to be able to work for myself. I would also like double the income though, of working a day job and a side job!


Nick January 4, 2014 at 7:03 am

I hear you. There’s a point where the momentum of a side hustle builds up so much that quitting the day gig is only a very temporary blip. That’s a great point to reach and then you can have your cake and eat it too… 🙂


Jon @ MoneySmartGuides January 2, 2014 at 9:14 pm

I worked on my side hustles part time and built them up so that they bring in a good amount of healthy income. They don’t bring in what I would want in order to do them full time, but through circumstance, I am currently working them full time. I’m excited to make a go at them and see what happens.


Nick January 4, 2014 at 7:03 am

Awesome, Jon! Keep me posted on how it goes!


Tahnya Kristina January 4, 2014 at 10:34 am

Every time I have a bad day at work I contemplate quitting and freelancing full time. I would be more happy with the flexibility to work from home, but I think I will miss the stable income too much. So I keep my day gig and just keep looking for a better one.


Nick January 6, 2014 at 1:15 pm

Looking for a better day gig is certainly a great way of going at it, too. It takes a lot of time to build up a side gig to the point where it’s predictable. I’m nowhere near it myself and suspect I’m a couple of years away, particularly since I bring in the sole paycheck for the family at this point.


Tony C January 5, 2014 at 7:43 pm

Excellent Post! I too keep my main job and work my side gig as many hours as possible. Someone once said to me, “Son, art is a beautiful thing! It’s more beautiful when it makes you money.” So I tried selling art. Miserable existence. 🙂 I found you through My500Words challenge. I will return often to read your work. Thank you for sharing.


Nick January 6, 2014 at 1:17 pm

Thanks Tony C! Here in Boston there’s a beloved Tony C we speak about quite a bit… the “what could have been” of the 60s and 70s… but I digress. Selling art? Wow! From what I understand, the art “industry” is often as ugly as the art itself is pretty. Thanks for stopping by!


Grayson @ Debt Roundup January 6, 2014 at 12:56 pm

I thouroughly enjoy my day job. I don’t plan on leaving anytime soon. I also have side gigs, but that is because those help me achieve a different level of financial independence. I plan on doing both for quite some time. I do think some people jump ship too soon and it backfires on them.


Nick January 6, 2014 at 1:19 pm

I like it, Grayson! Nothing wrong with hustling with a plan and focus, for a greater good. Nice stuff!


Ryan @ Impersonal Finance January 6, 2014 at 3:22 pm

Good stuff! I work a day job too, and even if all of my side businesses and hustles were enough to live off of, I don’t know if I would quit, just because of some of the benefits that having a regular 9-5 can bring! It always amazes me that people will quit a job without having anything lined up, or on a whim.


Nick January 7, 2014 at 2:48 pm

Thanks Ryan! I, too, enjoy a lot about the 9-5 (or… 8:30-6… whatever). Quitting before all of my proverbial ducks are in a row is just something that does not register with me either!


Justin @ RootofGood January 7, 2014 at 3:41 pm

Pretty good advice. Every job kinda sucks in one way or another, but they normally come with paychecks. Paychecks that provide for your living expenses today and often leave you with an adequate surplus to save for tomorrow.

Being retired now, I’m glad I didn’t quit too early with the hopes I could find some side hustle income eventually. I mean, I did find a little side hustle income, but I don’t really need it.


Nick January 8, 2014 at 1:16 pm

Thanks Justin. Even self employment comes with its share of setbacks, for sure. And congratulations on kicking some tail in early retirement!


Cash Cow Couple January 9, 2014 at 1:02 pm

This is great advice and something we are currently doing. The wife is looking for a new job, and we are earning income online, but it’s tough to decide where to focus attention. The main thing is have the income necessary to pay the bill. Keep growing it to have more freedom!


Nick January 14, 2014 at 4:39 am

Totally! Good luck with it all. It can totally become overwhelming real quick if you don’t have a plan. I’m still working on mine, but have a general idea at this point…


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