Peculiar Side Gigs, Money > Happiness & Refilling Your Cup 🍵

March 28, 2023

Happy Tuesday, beautiful people!

“You can’t pour from an empty cup.”

It’s simple mechanics… If you’re giving out more energy than you are replenishing, you’ll always feel depleted and not your best self.

This week, try to:

  • get enough sleep 💤
  • spend a little time outside 🌤️
  • lessen computer screen time 📲
  • work out or go for a walk 💪
  • stay hydrated and eat good meals 🚰
  • appreciate and count your blessings 🙏
  • be romantic with your partner 😘

Self-care isn’t selfish. Keeping your cup filled lets you be the best you! (which in turn is better for everyone around you, too)

OK, onto the money stuff! 👇👇👇


Swap Out Your Old Bulbs 💡

One of the fastest ways to cut your energy bill is to reduce the wattage in your cottage. ⚡️🏡

LED bulbs use up to 90% less energy (and last 25x longer!) than traditional bulbs. CFLs are great too, using about 70% less than typical incandescent bulbs. Spending just $30 on energy efficient LEDs usually has a payback in a matter of months. Then any usage beyond that is all gravy! 🙂

Let’s all switch out our bulbs this week. Can I get a watt watt!? 💡🙌


Unique Money-Making Ideas 🤓

The days are getting longer, and with that you may find yourself feeling more “spendy.” But what if we could find a way to turn those extra hours of daylight into cash?

Here are a few peculiar ways to make some extra cash this spring you may not have thought of!

Sell Your College Notes📝You can make some money online by selling your old college notes on websites like Stuvia or Nexus. You’re not likely to make a ton of money, but if you have them lying around, why not make some extra bucks.

Create an Airbnb Experience 🌃 If you live in a bigger city and have a skill or breadth of knowledge, you could be a perfect candidate to offer an Airbnb Experience. Local cooking or art classes, hosting tours of night-life, or some experiences are even fully virtual!

Host Workout Classes In Your Yard 💪:  Over the pandemic, a local trainer in my neighborhood started hosting workout classes on her front lawn. Word spread throughout the town, and sometimes she would have close to a hundred people show up! You don’t need to be an expert, there’s a lot of folks that just want basic stretching/movement.

Monetize Your Meal Prep 👨‍🍳: If you already spend your weekends cooking up a storm, why not consider meal prepping for some of your neighbors? Offer to make them some delicious meals at a fraction of the cost of meal delivery kits! They save money and you get paid. It’s a win-win! 

Life Modeling 🎨If you’re comfortable hanging around for an hour or two in your birthday suit, you can become a model for painting classes! 

Become A Mock Juror 👩‍⚖️: Most of us would like to avoid jury duty at all costs, but becoming a mock juror actually pays pretty well! It’s all virtual and typically lasts about an hour. You can get paid anywhere from $20-50 per session.

Become a Film or TV Extra 🤩: If you feel like you were made for the limelight, try becoming a TV or Film extra. You get paid anywhere from $100-200 per day, and you’ll probably have a blast doing it. 

All this to say, a side hustle doesn’t have to mean boring tasks. If you wanna make some extra cash, you can get as whacky or creative as you like.

More Resources:


We’re huge fans of e-bikes. And Joel constantly raves about his RadWagon 4!

Rad Power Bikes make a huge range of styles for different uses, like off-road, commuter, utility, or even fold-up bikes for easy storage. Yes, e-bikes have a hefty upfront cost, but they save you a ton of money opposed to cars and your city/state might have some tax credits to offset the cost!

If you’re looking for a e-bike this spring, check out Rad Power Bikes. We can’t say enough good things about ’em.


Less Money, or a Job You Hate? 🤷‍♂️

Today’s chart comes from a recent YouGov poll, asking people if they’d prefer a job they love with less pay, or a job they hate with higher pay. Here are the results 👇👇👇


Some thoughts:

  • As folks get older, they’re less likely to accept work they despise. Life is short, so prioritizing happiness over money makes sense.
  • That being said, the same survey explains that younger folks are more “worried about money” on a daily basis. So perhaps youngins are willing to sacrifice enjoyment at work, hoping their higher salary will ease money stress.
  • No matter how much people hear “money doesn’t buy happiness”, a good chunk of us are always trying to prove that statement wrong.

An often overlooked factor when choosing a career is *who you turn into* slowly over time… If you work a job you hate for years on end, all that anger and resentment can change your personality, physical health, and shorten your life expectancy. Hateful work bleeds into other areas of your life like a cancer. Is getting paid a higher salary worth a shorter, less happy life?

The good news: Money or happiness is not a binary decision. You don’t have to choose one or the other, there are infinite middle grounds to have both. It’s quite possible to grow huge wealth on a modest income.

Related articles:


Newsy news news…

Tax Return Survey 👏
Bankrate’s latest poll shows how people are planning to spend their tax refund money this year… And we’re actually pleasantly surprised with these results! A good chunk of people (28%) are planning to pay off debt, and the next highest group (26%) will be putting it directly into savings!

4 Day Workweek 👩‍💻
For all you job seekers wanting shorter weeks, here are 11 companies that are hiring right now that have adopted or are in the process of implementing 4 day workweeks. Cool to see this trend spreading! 

Happiest Countries 📍
Visual Capitalists just released their World Happiness Index Map ranking the most & least happy countries in the world. Finland sits at the top for the 6th year in a row! (USA is at 15 out of 137 countries studied)

Passport Delays 🎫
If you’re traveling soon and need to renew/apply for a passport, start the process ASAP. Passport wait times are now up to 11 weeks (and even expedited requests by paying an extra $60 can still take 5-7 weeks)

Fed Rate Hikes 📈
The federal bean counters announced another .25% rate increase last week“The process of getting inflation back down to 2% has a long way to go and is likely to be bumpy” Fed Chair Jerome Powell said.


Becca, 60y/o from New England 🛳️

Occupation: Retired!
Salary: no income other than investments 😉

Paycheck deductions: No paycheck, so no deductions!
Housing: Own outright. Taxes and insurance are ~$625
Debt Payments: Debt free! And have always been except for mortgage
Living expenses: ~$4,700 plus health insurance

How are you investing your excess savings each month?
Since there is no income, there really is no more “saving” going on now. Our nest egg is made up roughly of:

  • cash (a few years expenses)
  • Taxable brokerage account (majority of money). Invested 70/30 (stock mutual funds/bond funds)
  • Rollover IRAs for each of us (from old 401k accounts). These have about 70/30 stock mutual funds/bond funds
  • Roth IRAs for each of us. Investments similar to IRAs
  • HSA in stock funds and a little cash

Biggest “craft beer equivalent” splurge:

Best savings hack/advice:
If I could give my 22 year old self some advice, I would say to be sure to talk to older relatives (grandparents, parents, etc.) to hear about their lives. What can they tell you about family history? What non-financial, non-material legacy can they pass down?

My biggest blessing is that I had parents who modeled good money habits (live within means, stay out of debt), even though we never really talked specifically about how to manage money.

I never really used a budget, just never spent more than I had. Always had extra money in savings (although I never called it an “emergency fund “). I have tracked actual expenses (after the fact) the last many years to get a better idea of our expenses and net worth.

Biggest money challenge right now?
Creating a good deaccumulation strategy to draw most tax efficiently from taxable accounts, Roth, IRA, HSA…

Anything else you want to share?
Good decisions when young (started with 10% into 401k right out of college, never was in debt, always lived well within my means, etc.) enabled us to retire and now live very comfortably (but not extravagantly). I stopped working at age 50. Husband at 68. Did not start Social Security until age 70…just starting his this month.

**Editor’s note: We share these stories to inspire others and provide new ideas/perspectives on growing wealth. If you’ve got a story you think will help others, we’d love to hear it! And thank you in advance for helping our community grow richer and happier. 🙏

Cheers for reading and have a killer week ahead. Remember — Fill up your cup! 🍵

Best friends out 🍻


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