Pursuing a career in the entertainment industry requires flexibility. Lots of flexibility, day in and day out, month after month, year after year. Meaning you are ready at a moments notice to drop what you’re doing, hop in your car (or some other form of transportation) and be on set within a few hours time. Plain and simple that’s how this industry works and you have to be ready, all of the time. Life can literally change from one hour to the next and having the ability to just pick up and go is paramount. It can mean the difference between success and failure. Thus the importance of the money job, as I like to call it or survival job as others have called it. Money job sounds so much better to me but they are one in the same. So no matter what you call it, the money job, the survival job or something in between it all comes down to the same thing…having a job or jobs that pays enough to keep your bills afloat but is still flexible enough to where you can change your money job schedule at the very last minute without jeopardizing that job. That is the name of the game and it is critically important if you are going to not only survive but thrive for years to come in this wonderfully exciting yet unpredictable industry.
Below is a partial list of the many different “money jobs” one can have. I say partial because I am sure more could be added to this list. All the jobs are flexible in nature, some more than others so the very best way to approach finding your money job(s) is to determine what fits your personality best. Really give this some thought because more than likely you’ll be doing this money job(s) for years to come and you want to enjoy it on some level.
Waiter/waitress: The old standard. Almost everyone at one time or another has waited tables and for good reason, there’s good money in it plus you’re working alongside other artists who are very amenable to covering for each other when needed.
Cater-waiter: Very similar to waiting tables however you are employed by a catering company and work at different locations/functions vs at a single location/restaurant.
Bartender: Again similar to waiting tables. The upside is you can typically count on big tips but most likely you’ll be working late nights. Perfect if you’re a night owl.
Background work: One of the best because it gets you out on set where you can meet people and start networking. Keeps your morale up and is a great stepping stone. But don’t get too comfortable. As the saying goes “once an extra, always an extra” so be selective.
Babysitting/nanny: Superb if you like children.
Personal trainer: If you love health and fitness then this could be the job for you.
Brand Ambassador: Perfect if you are a “people person.”
Focus group participant: Want your opinion heard? Here’s where you can have your say.
Research study participant: Be a part of science and take part in research studies. Typically these pay very well.
Driver for Lyft, Uber or Sidecar: My personal favorite but you must have a decent car and be able to pass a background check with flying colors.
Online seller with Craigslist, Amazon, or eBay: Can be very lucrative but time consuming yet your hours are your own 100%.
Pet sitter/dog walker: If you’re an animal lover this could be ideal.
Paid Audience Member: Usually you’re paid cash on the spot.
Avon/Mary Kay: Perfect for those who love all things make-up and skin care.
Temp work: Only caveat is to confirm ahead of time that they are flexible and you can leave for your auditions at any time.
Website designer/blogger/social media: If you’re savvy with online anything there is a make-your-own-hours job waiting for you.
The bottom line with all of these jobs is you want it to serve its purpose in paying your bills but never to take over your life. None of these jobs should EVER get in the way of you pursuing your goals. Keep your bills and living expenses down to a minimum which for many of you may mean living with a roommate(s), no new clothes, no out-on-the-town evenings buying dinner, drinks etc. You get the picture. Everything you do should be to towards your goal. Keep that in laser focus because this type of life can be difficult but worth it when you achieve success. And having said that, set 6-month goals so that when the going gets tough you can remind yourself of your 6-month goal. Don’t worry too much about the present day circumstances as long as every single day, yes every single day you are working towards your goal. This will empower you and keep your morale up.
Til next time…Victoria xox