The fat man ordered me to pick up his drugs.
Late one Saturday night at 18 years of age I drove a chauffeur car for a living. (You had to be 21 to do it legally. My boss didn’t care. I didn’t care either.)
After picking up the man we drove to our destination. Most of my work involved driving clients to a handful of nightclubs. I did the job so I could meet DJs and make friends with them.
About halfway there the man with a cheap red suit jacket and scruffy, unlaced, piano black shoes asks me to turn around.
“We need to go back that way.”
“How come?” I said in a surprised tone.
“I’ve got some coke I need to pick up.”
My heart began to beat faster.
I hate drugs. They make me feel sick. The people that deal them are society’s dark underbelly.
A simple drug deal can go from good to bad in 60 seconds. My friend that got stabbed in front of my eyes by a gang of teenagers taught me that.
“We can’t do it,” I said. “I’m not allowed to use the car for that.”
The man got angry. A rush of blood flowed to his face.
“You’ll take me there or you’ll see what’s going to happen to you!”
I did as the man asked, as I valued my boney ass. Then a thought came to mind. I’ll make him think we’re going to the pickup, but instead, we’ll go to my safety zone.
“I’m just going to take a shortcut so we get there faster,” I announced.
“Sure mate, no worries.” He was a bit out of it from whatever drugs he took before getting in the car.
I drove as fast as I could to the nightclub where I did most of my drop-offs. The man had no idea of my secret plan. Within 15 minutes we arrived.
I pulled up slowly to the club and got out of the car, the man’s face still glued to his phone. I walked over to the security.
“This man asked me to pick up drugs. Can you take care of him?”
An army of security guards assembled and walked over to the car.
They pulled the man out of the car by his legs and beat the crap out of him. The aftermath wasn’t pretty. His face was a bloody mess. His clothes got ripped and bloody. I felt bad for what happened.
It was either him or me.
If I did the pickup I’d have risked my life dealing with dangerous drug dealers.
I tell you this story because without a side hustle, this is the way I had to earn a living — by putting my life in danger every night. After all, if people are out later than midnight on a weekday it’s rarely for a good reason.
Barely getting by is no life to live
Most of us don’t thrive financially by working a 9-5 job.
We’re paid just enough to stay based on how much we cost to replace. Few understand this. Sure, we get a salary. But how many people do you know who have money left over after all the bills get paid? Zero? One?
That’s what you call surviving. Screw that.
Life is too good to simply ‘survive.’
The anxiety you feel is a guiding light
So why don’t we get away from dangerous jobs like I once worked by building a side hustle?
Starting a side hustle means putting ourselves on the line. There are risks. It could fail. Things could blow up in your face.
What’s missed is the gap between your current job and what you want to be doing creates the anxiety.
The anxiety is helpful.
The more you think you should be doing something else the higher the anxiety becomes. And if you ignore it for long enough then the double-whammy of regrets starts to jab you in the face.
A killer phrase to get you started
My friend Dan Koe says the phrase “f*ck it, I’ll make it work” is what it takes to get started.
You’re smart. You’ll find a way. The point isn’t to overthink a side hustle or procrastinate on it for eternity and wait for the magical time of holidays to come and rescue your dreams.
It’s to get started, to burn the boats. To back yourself and remember, as Kevin Kelly once said…
The greatest teacher is called “doing.”
Do. This is the way.
A side hustle isn’t what you think
“Side hustle” has become a sexy phrase — and sexy usually becomes a distraction.
A side hustle is drawing a line in the sand. It’s you saying, “I get it now, I’m going to start working on a project after hours.”
It’s deciding to build something online to access internet leverage. It’s daring to charge money for skills you used to give away for free.
Most of all, it’s creating digital assets. A digital asset is how you take income that requires work, and turn it into income that is passive and happens while you sleep.
We know financial assets such as stocks are the key to financial freedom.
But few talk about digital assets, that produce the passive income to buy financial assets, that leads to financial freedom.
A digital asset is simply:
- Video courses
- Membership communities
- Done-for-you software
- Or an automated email funnel that keeps people accountable for achieving a goal
Thrive = ???
Let’s wrap this up.
So you can’t thrive with one income source and a job that pays you the bare minimum and can fire you at any moment.
The way to thrive is to let your job pay the bills and use a side hustle to create a path towards passive income from digital assets, as I’ve done.
This will eventually give you multiple sources of income.
Some call this uncommon path “entrepreneurship.” I hate that label. It’s too complicated. It makes it seem like we all need to become mini Elon Musks to earn a decent living. Nope.
Side hustles are far more simple. Start one.