Top 5 Tips: Get Into The Creative Side-Hustle Mindset

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Are you are a stay-at-home mum looking for something to keep the creative energies flowing and earn a bit of pūtea? Or a promising female entrepreneur with dreams of building a sustainable start-up to employ you, your whānau/friends and provide well being for you and your tamariki?

No matter what it is, Awa Wahine’s Creative Business Tips will help your creative dreams become a reality.


I was going to write about taking guided action to start your creative side-hustle today, but then as I began it became ALL about exploring your creative side-hustle mindset instead.

In other words, it’s about getting the māra (garden) of your mind, de-weeded, watered and ready for planting creative seeds of fulfillment.

So, today you will be given tangible steps to explore and change your mindset to one of creative business success. It is up to you as to whether you take these on board and take action, or enjoy reading it and then choose to go back to your everyday life.

So let’s get started.

  1. Buy A Journal/Diary You Love

Yes I know. You are thinking really? A journal? How is that going to help me. Well from now on, this journal is going to house all of your creative ideas. No matter how fantastical, I want you to write all of them in this journal.

Pick a journal/diary that you really love. As Marie Kondo would say, find one that sparks joy. Then when you pick it up, you will feel good and feeling good about the seeds of your creative ideas is exactly what we want.

If you are a visual person, feel free to collage in this book as well. Draw all over it! Don’t worry about keeping it “perfect.”

Perfect literally doesn’t exist. So aim for imperfection with action!

Note the colours you seem to be drawn too and the ideas that get you really excited. You can draw on these when creating your brand and marketing.

2. Ask Yourself, What Is My Purpose?

Sit quietly, close your eyes and after a few minutes of deep-breathing, ask yourself “what am I here to do in this lifetime?”

Write the first thing that pops into your head. Not the second, not the third, the first. The first thought is always the one.

Take it in. This is your definite life purpose, as it is in this exact moment. It may change, but this is it right now. Your creative side-hustle(s) will always be in keeping with the achievement of this purpose.

If no answer came through for you, don’t worry. Set your journal down and continue on with your day. The seed of these questions are still in the back of your mind, and the answer will show up for you when you are least expecting it!

As an example, your first thought could have been to “be the best mother I can for my tamariki.” Being the best mother you can might include a creative side-hustle to provide for them, or it may not.

Or maybe it was something like “create artwork/writing/creative work that brings joy to those who see it.” Let’s put it this way: people who live in a state of joy generally don’t pollute or harm others. So what greater purpose is there than creating things that bring out the emotion of joy in others.

Don’t strive to change THE world, strive to change YOUR world and then the world around you will change ANYWAY.

3. Plan Your Time

Ask yourself “how long is the achievement of this going to take me?” Whatever pops into your head, write it down.

It could be 40 years or 2 days.

Now set aside some time to plan out your average week, scheduling in ideally a couple of hours a week to begin taking action on your creative side-hustle.

Include time to review your written down definite life purpose and time to up skill yourself.

Make sure you don’t overload yourself, or overdo it. Take into account any responsibilities your already have.

Creating a sense of balance and sustainability in your life are key. If the creative side-hustle becomes a form of self-abuse, the joy and love will be removed from your work.

4. Selling Your Work Is An Act Of Service

Spend some time thinking about your money story.

What thoughts pop into your head when you think of money? What did your parents teach you about money? When you go to pay your bills how do you feel in your heart? Stressed, anxious or empowered?

If you note any resistance to think about money, it will be worth heading to a HineBoss workshop near you (Māori Women’s Development Inc.) A section of their sponsored workshops goes into your money story, allowing you to release subconscious thoughts and patterning that you no longer want to run your life.

It is important for you to do this, otherwise it will be hard to create a flourishing creative business when negative thoughts like “I’ll never be wealthy” or “this business will never be successful” are still ruling the roost.

If your creative business doesn’t earn an income to at least cover your costs at some point in the future, it is unsustainable. It may not be worth your time in the long run, and you will could end up shutting it down. This means that all those people you were meant to help with your beautiful writing/art/creativity no longer have the opportunity to purchase your product/service.

Every time you sell your work to someone who really appreciates it, this is an act of service.

If you are going to sell your work for cheap, and this doesn’t cover your costs then it isn’t a creative side-hustle or business.

It is an expensive hobby.

On the other hand, the more money you make from your creative side-hustle, the more you can look after your whānau and/or purchase more Māori-made products to support the GROWING Māori economy.

If you make HEAPS of money you could use your profits to invest in a Māori start-up, or buy a rental to house your extended whānau and provide passive income to you.

When you create your own wealth it can be for the benefit of the collective, your collective

So, make earning an income a priority for your future.

5. Reach Out To A Coach/Mentor or Inspiring HineBoss

If while completing these steps some negative self-talk popped in like:

“I just don’t have time to start this creative side-hustle”

“I don’t have enough money to begin”

“I have an idea but I don’t know where to start”

Then it might be useful to reach out to a coach/mentor or inspiring HineBoss. HineBoss is the term used by the MWDI to describe a Māori female entrepreneur. Coaches and mentors cost money and if you can afford this, it is definitely worth the investment.

If not, think about your networks and who has created their own successful business. Reach out to them and see if you can do coffee or even a Skype/Zoom catch up. Basically you want to be able to ask questions and pick their brains.

They might even agree to mentor you for free. In that case, you could consider baking them a cake or buying their coffee to show your gratitude for their valuable time.

That’s it! Once you’ve completed these steps you are ready to start taking guided action on your creative side-hustle.

The focus of this blog post has been on shifting your mindset. We’ve defined your life purpose, explored the mara (garden) of your mind and pulled out some weeds; and made plans to get a spade (outside help) for the really deep rooted ones.

In next weeks blog post we will affordably set-up your creative-side hustle on social media.

Thanks for reading!

Ataria Sharman (the founder of Awa Wahine) provides mentoring for wāhine who want to know their creative-calling and/or to start their own creative business. She can guide you step-by-step through how to create your own blog/website and/or social media accounts + social media strategy to maximise sales.

She is currently offering one free creative-mentoring session via Zoom to wāhine to help them craft their dream creative life. Click the button to take advantage of this amazing offer.