10 Side Jobs to Make money & Help Pay Off Debt

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There are times when we have to realize that our paychecks will only go so far. After penny pinching to make you budget work, you still might be living paycheck-to-paycheck. This type of lifestyle is bearable for a time but not ideal long-term. In order to accelerate your financial goals, additional income may be the resolution you need. But who has extra time? My response to those who approach me with such an inquiry is to ask them about their daily activities. If you missed one episode of your favorite show or had lunch at your desk twice a week instead of out with friends, could you commit 1-2hours/ week to get financial free? Let’s do it!

Seasonal Retail Jobs – Pet Sitter/Dog Walker

These two are self explanatory! My suggestion, sell where you shop and watch the animals you like best (cats vs dogs). You can even search for positions online!~

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Home Health Aide

This position can also be called a Patient Care Technician an often require no training or experience. What is the ideal person great for this job? If you are looking for a flexible schedule and are patient enough to assist the elderly and/or disabled with everyday tasks, you can make this position work for you! There are a variety of companies that often post for these jobs and rightfully so! Many people who get these jobs, because they do not require training or experience, are not necessarily interested in working in this field long term…and their attitude on the job shows it! Get your attitude and patience in order, make sure you can lift a small person, and keep your personal vehicle serviced in order to pull off this type of employment.

Referral Programs

Companies such as Ebate, Liberty Tax, and ADT Security Systems offer programs you can join for no/low cost in order to make some extra money. They actually pay you promote their services with fairly easy to use tools and instructions. That means, you’d take the time to sign up and discuss what they have to offer to a potential customer – a neighbor who just suffered from a break in, has collectibles in their home to sell, or recently divorced without a clue on how to file their income taxes. There are other services that although you may use them for discount shopping, travel, or managing your health, if you were to refer 5 other customers you’d get your own service for free each month. This could provide you with automatic savings monthly which can add up very quickly.


You do not have to me a Math whiz or finance major to make some extra money as a tutor. We have to thinking of entrepreneurship as a way to help others do what you know how to do naturally. Tutoring is a good example of that. Are you bilingual? Are you aware of the many organizations looking for YOU? At times companies exclude other required skills like a degree and experience in order to hire someone with the language skills their industry requires. Offer tutoring first through your contacts in your industry or even businesses you frequent in order to build a great resume for tutoring. Not sure of how to get started? I obtained an English degree because I thought I’d be teaching high school English in the Chicago Public School system. Obviously my plans changed but I continue to offer my proofreading, editing, blogging, and content management services as a consultant.

Home-Based Business

There are many options for home-based businesses to choose from. My advice would be to look into possible opportunities that come natural to you. Are you into making other women feel beautiful? Research Direct Sales companies such as Avon and Mary Kay. You can often get started for under $50 without requiring you to purchase equipment or stock. Are you a coffee lover who’s health conscious? Do you have a network of business owners and entrepreneurs? Are you looking to lose weight? Want to offer an innovative way for your church to keep in touch with contacts? Do you enjoy traveling and saving money while you shop your favorite stores? Believe it or not, you can promote all of the above products and services under one company! Join my team for my consistent support, training, and the possibility of residual income.

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Virtual Assistance

Although I’ve dabbled in virtual assistance, I did not know there was an actual term for it! These skills are for those who have a knack for customer service, email management, document management, organization, and the typical office duties of almost any company. I would suggest offer to ‘help’ and organization with an upcoming project and set an hourly rate that you would expect to work on the project with a projected end date for the client’s needs. This could be arranged based on your financial needs or the requirements of the project in question. You can then ask the client to be a reference and continue to build on your resume. This make cost you extra time on the phone, the need for a home office, or additional an additional data plan for your smart phone.

Virtual Garage Sales

Ebay has an interesting option for those seeking to get rid of the clutter in their home. Of course, their system is proven and shipping is attached to the entire process which makes it easier than ever to sale items online. There is no need to necessarily ‘market’ your product. Instead, just posting a picture detailed description can be enough for a customer. Another avenue is to join local Mommy groups on facebook where Moms trade, sell, and purchase items all the time. Some groups are sponsored by a local hospital, medical center, social service agency, church, or nonprofit. There have been times when a co-worker of mine was selling an item I was interested in for my daughter and the only way I knew was from her post online! We do not always have time to discuss everything we need or everything we have with everyone around us – this is where these groups are extremely helpful.

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Etsy & Flea Market/Community Farmer’s Market

If you have a skill for making things that other people could or just find completely enjoyable, this option is one for you! Although many crafty people I know attend Flea Markets, they lack an online presence. Etsy is another option for posting and sharing your products and many customers are already waiting to buy crafts and unique gifts. This is also good for people who are not so social media savvy to get a full website together. It is also a great way to involve family and friends who are not local but still want to support your business – just send out the link to your Etsy page!

Well there you have it! My top 10 side jobs to make money & help pay off debt. Let me know if you pursue any of the above. I’d like to get your feedback at ladiSims55[at]gmail.com to celebrate with you as you pursue your financial goals!

~be blessed

Let me know how I can improve your world~


What are You Worth?

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Walking into my evaluation, I had no idea what to expect. My direct supervisor always seemed to have a hidden agenda. At the last meeting, I was seen as “border-line insubordinate” for my views and responses. I was often criticized for not doing something unethical and was never offered an apology when falsely accused.

I headed into the meeting with my notepad, calendar, water, and pencil. I was 38 ½ weeks pregnant and afraid that I would have to look for another job while on welfare still sore after having my baby – of course they were going to fire me, right? I’d been overlooked for promotions; my work received little praise except in the presence of a few political leaders – which made me assume it was not sincere. Everyone I started with in this company had left or been fired. What was I going to do?

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I walked into my supervisor’s office and sat down waiting for her to respond with her thoughts on my performance over the past year. I wasn’t concerned about my numbers; I’d doubled those with a full quarter left in the program year. It wasn’t my relationship with my clients I was worried about – many sent in raving evaluations. It wasn’t even my attendance; my boss came in at least an hour after I did daily! I had not taken more than 2 days off this entire year.

I’d put in 4 years of school for my BA, 3 yrs to obtain my Master’s, almost $70,000 of student loans, 6 years of loyalty to this company, placing my reputation on the line out in the community, yet was earning a salary I could never raise a family with. I wasn’t supported by the very leadership I was working for but because of my upbringing and personal convictions, I remained loyal and humble. I would even help new staff acclimate to our toxic work environment hoping that would influence change. It never did.

My evaluation should have been on my job performance and possibly my attitude in the workplace. What could I do better? I was hoping to get some constructive criticism but instead I received a document and was told to look it over at home, write down any comments or questions, and turn it in tomorrow…the day I was to be induced for labor – as if tomorrow would not be stressful enough.

It was in that moment I reminded myself of my value. I gathered my things and went back into my office. There was only 25 minutes left in the work day and I took that entire time to read through and type up my response to the evaluation.  There was nothing constructive in the evaluation that I could do, just to do “more” with less time. As I carefully typed my response, I reminded myself of my value. I knew my work was very professional and important to the company. I knew that if I had not carried the integrity I did, many of our partners would refuse to work with us and I knew that my clients were pleased.

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Sometimes we have to remind ourselves of our own worth. You are more than your paycheck, more than your assets, your car, and your rebellious children. We are worth more than our education or what others perceive of us. Why? Our value is not determined by other’s opinions, people change their minds everyday! We’re not perfect, always on time, or extremely fit and beautiful. Our worth is determined by us. Value yourself. You can always perform better if you so desire – that’s why our worth is so high – we can change, transform, and renew our thoughts and mindset. I could have chosen to focus on the negative situation and stress myself out causing complications within my body. But I chose to give myself an evaluation and remind myself of my worth. I came up with my own regiment of doing better – set my own goals to be more productive, and treated myself to a nice meal afterward. : )



ladiSims is a Workforce Consultant committed to “ Monetizing your Mission: Saving and increasing revenue for job seekers, entrepreneurs, and small businesses through empowering employment readiness, social media marketing, and discounted operations. She has over 6 years of extensive experience in social services, workforce development, small business development, recruiting and case management. She serves a variety of job seekers, including veterans and disabled adults, with finding employment and adjusting to career changes. Many of her clients seek to transition into new careers with financial and educational barriers hindering their success. ladiSims also shares resources, teaches Employment Readiness, and provides solutions for small businesses in her community. Born and raised in Chicago, IL, ladiSims has a passion for helping people progress towards their career, family, and entrepreneurial goals – she is also an advocate for education. Her BA degree is in English with a minor in African America Studies from SIUC where she also studied creative writing, journalism, and education. She also has a Master’s in Urban Planning and Policy (MUPP) with a concentration in Community Development from UIC. Her ‘why’ includes her daughter Charlotte, 2 moms, 2 dads, numerous siblings, faith in Christ, and the youth of ChiCity. Among her peers, she is known for simplifying complex issues, offering conflict resolution, and being able to connect with individuals of various socioeconomic statuses, cultures, skill sets, & educational backgrounds. ladiSims uses her ability to create and maintain strategic partnerships to influence both rural and urban communities. Find ladiSims on Instagram, Twitter, and Periscope for more of her shenanigans!


The D Word

Daycare. The dreaded term strikes fear in the hearts of many mothers. I know because it used to strike fear in mine. I will never forget touring daycares and leaving my first in tears. It didn’t feel warm and inviting. Instead it seemed institutionalized and cold. Forget about the aesthetics, there is the guilt about “leaving” your baby and the stigma that society places on children that “had” to go to daycare.babies playing

The stigma is not discussed often. The benefits of daycare’s educational environment is down played by stay at home moms just as working outside the home moms taut it. It is as if acknowledging the benefits of one will hurt the existence of the other.

Leaving H for the first time was heartbreaking for me. I had always pictured myself as a stay at home mom. When I was faced with the reality that it was just not possible, I was devastated. In fact, I couldn’t physically drop H off. I made Andy take him the whole first week. Just looking at the daycare gave me a sinking feeling in my stomach. How would they know him as well as I did? He was a preemie. What if he had a need they neglected?   Would he sit on a Boppie all day long?

When Baby C2 went to daycare it was a little easier only because I knew the teachers. Otherwise, it was just as difficult. I felt like I was somehow failing them. For me, the older they get the more they learn in an educational environment. H is in music, phonics and they have a lesson plan they do every month in his class to teach him about plants, dinosaurs, families, weather and so many other things. However, when they are so, little like 8-12 weeks, it makes it seem like you are throwing them to the wolves. “Here little baby, here is the big wide world. Jump on in.”

Baby C2 has been in daycare now for several months. He is thriving. He loves it. I recognize that he truly enjoys all of the play time and activities and so that has helped me cope with leaving him in someone else’s care for most of the day. However, I was reminded of the feeling this week as I watched a young mother pick up her baby boy from his first partial day. When I came in to feed Baby C2 I saw her standing in the classroom clutching her infant. She was talking to the teachers and holding him close to her cheek. As she turned to put him in his car seat she kissed him and said, “Did you have a fun? I missed you so much. Mommy missed you sweetie.” My heart went out to her. I walked over and introduced myself. I asked her how she was doing and she told me she was ok, but this was hard. I empathized. I told her it gets easier. I shared that I had a two year old as well and that he loved school. She smiled. We introduced our babies, but as she continued to talk more tears welled up in her eyes. I said, “Alice (we’ll pretend that was her name), would you mind if I hugged you.” “No, not at all and thank you,” she exclaimed as I hugged her hard around the neck.

Alice needed someone to understand. She is trying to be brave. She is telling herself it will be ok. It will, but doesn’t make it any easier because it isn’t easy. Although daycare has a lot of wonderful educational moments most moms never escape the feeling that they should be doing more for their children. However, not spending every second of every day with your child does not make you less of a mom.

As a woman and mother you should never feel guilty for taking care of your family. You should feel proud. Motherhood comes in all shapes, sizes and perspectives. There is no guilt and no stigma here.

How did you feel the first time you left your baby? Share with us.

Peace, Love and Respect,


Moms Unite! Let’s Squash this beef

momsfighting_imageHow many articles, blog posts, or comments have you read in recent years with moms debating whether it’s best to work versus stay at home or work outside the home versus work at home? I am sick and tired of this debate and, “Quite frankly, Scarlet, I don’t give a d*@#!” Does it really matter whether a mom works outside the home or at home OR whether she works or stays at home? The truth of the matter is that ALL moms WORK and it’s time to squash this beef! It is time for us moms to realize that we have way more in common than not. There are many reasons why moms decide to “work”, wherever they work. But, the truth remains that if you have children you are always “on the clock”.

Growing up with a mother who worked outside the home it never crossed my mind that I would not do the same. Then I got pregnant with Junior and I started to seriously reconsider my plans. However, due to circumstances fully within my control (we just didn’t plan our finances accordingly) I found myself in a situation where I had no choice, but to return to work after Junior was born. As we prepared for his arrival all I could think of was that I was going to have to go back to work after my maternity leave. And it was depressing, to say the least. After Junior was born I was overwhelmed, to say the least. Those 12 weeks of maternity leave flew by. Thankfully, Auntie came to live with us and kept Junior, so at least there was comfort in knowing that I could leave him in the care of a family member (even if it wasn’t Mommy) versus having to take him to daycare. I also had a flexible job as a pharmaceutical sales rep so I could come home and visit (check on) him when I wanted to. So, in my case, although I would have loved to be able to stay at home with Junior I had to go back to work. Now, I must say that working outside the home was much easier than staying at home. My husband was in Divinity school while our boys were young and he had class all day Saturdays, so I was at home by myself with two little ones (both under two years old at one point) for several years and I was exhausted to say the least. I often wondered how Stay at Home Moms (SAHM) did it and if I was ever really cut out for it.

Now, on the other hand I know there are some SAHMs who often wish they momsunite_imagecould work outside the home. Some, to escape the boredom and exhaustion of being at home, and others to help provide financially for their families. Isn’t it funny how we are often never satisfied with our circumstances? Enter the Work at Home Mom (WAHM). WAHMs are often SAHMs who have started their own businesses in order to continue to stay at home with their children and fulfill their desire to contribute financially to their families and engage their minds in a stimulating way. Whether you are a Work Outside the Home Mom (WOTHM – did I just make that up?), WAHM or a SAHM, we all have valuable experiences to share. So, moms, what do you say? Let’s squash this beef! It’s time to unite.

We would love to hear your WOTHM, WAHM or SAHM story!

Until next time-

“She considers a field and buys it; out of her earnings she plants a vineyard. She sets about her work vigorously; her arms are strong for her tasks. She sees that her trading is profitable, and her lamp does not go out at night. She watches over the affairs of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness.” (Proverbs 31:16-18; 27 NIV)

God’s best-


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