Making a Living from Life: Getting Paid to Do Not Much

NEW YORK (AP) — The post-pandemic world has accelerated a revolution in the workplace. As the boundaries between work and life continue to erode, more people are earning a buck doing seemingly ordinary tasks.

Many people are now juggling multiple jobs and side hustles. The trend is occurring not only because technology has allowed new forms of work to flourish but also because earning extra income is fast becoming an economic necessity for many. Although annualized inflation in the US reached 5% in April, declining further from last year’s peak, the higher cost of living still threatens to erode American consumers earning power.

More people are turning to unconventional sources of income to increase their earning power. Many turn a profit from doing activities that are already embedded in their daily life. The trend is particularly prominent among especially disenchanted Millennials and Gen Z, many of who are priced out of traditional assets like houses and starting families later than previous generations.

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This article will explore various ways people attempt to earn money from simple hustles requiring less effort.

Live-to-Earn

Blurring the boundaries between work and life enables individuals to earn around the clock. The old dream of making money while you sleep is literally coming true for some. Furniture companies often require ‘sleep testers ‘ to try their product and will pay for the service. There are also other tasks you can do while asleep, from donating plasma to streaming online commercials.

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The rise of walk-to-earn apps incentivizes people to slim down while fattening their wallets. Apps like Stepbet, FitnessPotato, and EarthMiles offer a range of cash rewards, discounts, and other bonuses to their ‘active users.’ However, certain conditions must be met to reach the point of payout.

Even when your feet need a rest from walking, they can still make you money. Many women have now become foot models, selling photos of their feet online. Most pics sell between $5-100, with some top earners making thousands a month selling pics to subscribers.

If getting paid to walk is not enough, some combine it with other passions. Dog lovers can now earn some quick cash by offering dog walking services. Platforms such as Rover or Wag make it easy for walkers to set up a profile, set prices, connect with owners in their area, and earn extra income.

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And while canines may be ‘man’s best friend,’ there is still a need for human companions, enabling people to rent themselves out as friends to strangers. Platforms like rentafriend.com have become a marketplace for lonely souls who need to pay for someone to go out to a restaurant with them or accompany them to a social event.

One man in Japan, Shoji Morimoto, earns more than $70 per booking to accompany people on short excursions, usually to a park or restaurant, or some other public space. He does not tell jokes or stories or do anything in particular while out with the client; he just simply exists with them and makes small chats when appropriate.

While most quirky side hustles won’t earn you a six-figure salary, there are ways to expand them. For instance, by hiring other content creators to increase the volume or by leveraging artificial intelligence automation to accelerate and automate the process.

Going Artificial

Online hustlers are increasingly tapping the power of artificial intelligence (AI) to assist in their online money-making ventures. There are a number of profitable side hustles that ChatGPT can assist with.

One is website building, as many software engineers – and even those with no coding experience – spin up sites for clients by instructing ChatGPT to generate the code base for them.

Another option is pattern making. Using AI tools like Midjourney, creators can easily generate and fine-tune compelling graphic visuals into a product. They then sell them in PNG form on online marketplaces like Etsy. This can be a highly passive form of income since it requires little to no customer service and no physical delivery as these are downloadable files.

Banking Bust

With myriad ways to make money online now, coordinating payments for revenue streams has become vital. Most online entrepreneurs will need to juggle multiple accounts, including the revenue balance embedded in the platforms they sell on, such as Amazon, their traditional bank account, and other digital accounts.

While it is more cumbersome, even unbanked individuals can find ways to earn money online. Some online payment platforms, such as PayPal, allow users to receive payments without a bank account by linking their account to a prepaid debit card or by receiving payment through a trusted friend or family member’s account, while some online workers choose to receive payment in cryptocurrency, which can be stored and used without a bank account. They can even manage if they receive their payment in physical form. For instance, there are several ways to cash in a personal check without a bank account, such as through a local grocery store or convenience chain like Seven-Eleven.

Spinning up a passive income stream may seem intimidating. Yet there are a number of tools out there to guide people toward their ideal hustle. There are many online courses that teach strategies for getting more projects through freelance platforms such as Fiver or Upwork. There are also dozens of low-cost e-books available on the subject.

Ultimately, this requires some level of experimentation. It takes time to find a side hustle that also is a natural fit for one’s life. Yet the shift toward alternative modes of earning reminds us that value is relative and is becoming more decoupled from hours spent clocked in at the office, enabling new innovative ways to mix earning and living.

This article was produced and syndicated by Wealth of Geeks.

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