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Is Your Job Really as Secure as You Think?

Image courtesy of Eric Tessmer

Security is something that everyone wants.

In a world of uncertainty, everyone would like the security of knowing that they will always have enough money to buy food and pay the bills.

Conventional wisdom suggests that having a job provides a good deal of security, as you have a regular monthly income of a fixed amount, which you can plan your budget around, and maybe even a company pension, which will provide for you after you retire from your job.

But the fact is, although a steady job may provide you with a sense of security, it’s not actually a very secure way to earn a living.

Whenever I speak to friends about work, a lot of them are constantly worried that they’re going to lose their jobs. In ‘the current economic climate more and more companies are laying off employees, and yesterday’s news reported a 17-year high in unemployment in the UK.

The reason people are so scared of losing their jobs is that for most people it’s their only source of income. They know that if they lost their job, finding another one might not be an easy task, and they might have to live off savings for several months (if they even have any savings).

So if a job can’t provide real security, what’s a better solution?

Multiple Income Streams

The problem with a full-time job, despite the apparent benefit of a regular income, is that it usually accounts for 100% of a person’s income. So if that income stream dries up, you’re left with nothing coming in every month.

On the other hand, if you make money from four separate sources, each accounting for 25% of your total income, when one of them dries up, you still have 75% of your previous total coming in every month.

This is the beauty of being self-employed, and the reason why being your own boss can actually provide more security than working for someone else.

The more you can diversify your income streams, the less impact it will have on your financial situation when one of them dries up.

We know that it’s possible (albeit not easy) to make money from art, but as artists, there are lots of other ways we can make money, in addition to just selling our artwork.

For example, here are some of the ways I have earned money over the past few months:

And some that I plan to earn from in the not-too-distant future:

  • Teaching an online art course, or selling tutorial videos
  • Writing and selling ebooks
  • Playing music gigs with my band

And there are plenty more ideas where they came from. The point is, although some of these are more lucrative than others, losing any one of them would not cause a personal financial crisis, as I would still have the others to provide some income.

What Value Can You Offer the World?

We earn money by providing value to others.

If you can consistently provide great value, in the form of products or services that people really want, then you can always earn money.

And the more different ways you can think of to provide value, the more income streams you can create, and the more financial security you will have.

Even if you’re quite happy with your job, and have no intention of ever giving up that regular income, it’s worth thinking about how you could potentially make a living if you ever lost your job.

If you’ve never thought about it before, why not try it now?

Think of something you can offer that people would find value in, and share it in the comments below.


Working for Yourself Guide


8 Comments on Is Your Job Really as Secure as You Think?

  1. Christine Hill says:

    This has certainly started the cogs turning! Had a look at the link to Schoolism and online art courses. Waiting for yours!!

    • Dan Johnson says:

      Hi Christine. My course may be a while in the making, although I plan to release one or two video tutorials independently in the next few weeks.

  2. Emma says:

    This is soo true. I had a conversation at the weekend with a friend about this very thing. My question would be, what do you do, if your skill base is one where you generally have to work within the public sector, and it is difficult to reduce your hours? Very thought provoking stuff. Thank you πŸ™‚

  3. Graeme says:

    OH MAN! Well said.

    I’m usually very depressed with modern man and his society, because I’m awake to what we live in.
    I see NO security in a job, in fact, I hate the idea of a job.
    I know, it may seem selfish or childish – but I don’t understand it all.

    I’m constantly trying to remain creative with graphic design, photography, painting, drawing, music, skateboarding – A LOT OF THINGS!
    My ultimate goal is to make a living without a boss.

    I’ve worked as a graphic designer/sign-writer for the past 12 months – that meant working 9 to 5, 5 days a week. I couldn’t stand it.
    I’ve since moved on to another sign-writing job, and am only working 3-4 days a week.
    Already I feel a lot more free with my own creative time.

    I’m getting there! And am constantly encouraging others to motivate themselves.

    Nice post dude,

    Graeme.

  4. Jun says:

    I’ve always been hostile to the modern attitude of “Work to live, live to work”. The way I see it, if the only jobs you can find make you feel dehumanized and bored almost to death on a daily basis, don’t work. Don’t expect others to look after you either, of course, but a little money to survive every fortnight isn’t much to ask in return for letting those politicians have their way.

    But there’s always opportunities to make money, and people seem to forget the most obvious, basic, human thing – Communicate with people. I see people who spend hours weekly searching for jobs online, through directories, etc… But every job and almost every opportunity to make cash I’ve ever had has been from word-of-mouth.

    My advice to anyone struggling : Be sociable. Be human. That alone will open up thousands of doors.

    • Dan Johnson says:

      Great advice Jun! I completely agree. People tend to think the only way to make money is to get a job, but I believe everyone has the potential to make their own money by offering something of value that people will be willing to pay for. Sometimes it can take a while to figure out what you will offer, but everyone can add value to the world if they put their minds to it.

  5. Dustin says:

    The nice part about this concept is that often I want to do 4 or 5 things a week anyway. Do you all feel as I do that your 9-5 (or in my case sometimes 7-5) actually interferes with your personal ability to earn independently?

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