139: Building Multiple Income Streams with For-Profit Hobbies

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I’m excited to introduce you to John Rouda, an IT manager near Charlotte, North Carolina. He’s built a variety of non-job income streams on the side, while still working full time.

In fact, we recorded this session from his office at work!

John calls his side businesses “for-profit hobbies,” which I think is a great attitude to take. He has a handful of books on Amazon, dozens of apps in the app store, is a part-time professor, and runs a local IT/computer maintenance service business.

These were not overnight sensations, but they build on one another and grow over time. Each “hobby” gives an opportunity to try something new, learn new skills, and develop another income stream.

I was fortunate to be able to grab lunch with John when I was in Charlotte for FinCon, and it was cool to connect in real life. He’s a husband and a father as well, so we get into how he balances all these different hustles!

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  • How John became a part-time professor and how you can find similar opportunities locally or online.
  • How John built his mini app empire and how it runs almost completely passively.
  • His experiments with self-publishing.
  • How John bartered his way into free car repairs and free landscaping services.
  • How he turned those interactions into recurring revenue streams.
  • How he sets these hobby businesses up to maximize his time.
  • John’s #1 tip for Side Hustle Nation.


Download the Free PDF "Highlight Reel" from this Episode

With all of my guest's top tips and resources included.

Enter your email to access it now:

You'll also receive my best side hustle tips and weekly-ish newsletter. Opt-out anytime.

John’s TEDx Talk:

YouTube video

for profit hobbies

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Nick Loper

About the Author

Nick Loper is a side hustle expert who loves helping people earn more money and start businesses they care about. He hosts the award-winning Side Hustle Show, where he's interviewed over 500 successful entrepreneurs, and is the bestselling author of Buy Buttons, The Side Hustle, and $1,000 100 Ways.

His work has been featured in The New York Times, Entrepreneur, Forbes, TIME, Newsweek, Business Insider, MSN, Yahoo Finance, The Los Angeles Times, The San Francisco Chronicle, The Financial Times, Bankrate, Hubspot, Ahrefs, Shopify, Investopedia, VICE, Vox, Mashable, ChooseFI, Bigger Pockets, The Penny Hoarder, GoBankingRates, and more.

10 thoughts on “139: Building Multiple Income Streams with For-Profit Hobbies”

  1. Turning your hobby into something that pays the bills is pretty much the dream of not just every entrepreneur, but probably every person alive. Unfortunately for most, watching Netflix doesn’t provide much value for other people, but when your hobby happens to be making smartphone apps/writing ebooks, you’re in luck. Then it’s just about figuring out how to make apps/ebooks that people actually want to buy! And in markets as saturated as those ones, that’s not a small task by any means.

  2. Finally! Someone who works like I do — multiple ideas and projects — to make a fulfilling life. Everyone on Side Hustle Nation has inspired me in some way, but to have a guest that makes me feel like I am okay even though I’m not a “one thing” kind of creator is very affirming. Thank you, Nick, and John.

  3. Thats the idea Nick,
    Creating a multiple streams of income is the way to go and it’s the dream of every entrepreneur.

    Having, turning a hobby into profit is usually not an easy task especially if you have a boring hobby.

    But if you a good hobby that also has some audience then, it might become much easier for you to turn it into a good business.

  4. The only hobby I have is looking for ways to pay off my debt faster. I love reading and I love playing computer games. Any clues on what kind of side jobs I could find?

  5. Hello nick i live in Sydney Australia and I can see a lot of side hustles that would work in America but not over here in Australia what do you recommend for people like myself?

    Great website I would appreciate a prompt response.


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