It’s been awhile – I let myself get caught up in the distractions of life; we’ve had some mild meningitis (husband, he was okay after a few days), deployments and road trips and doctor’s visits and surgeries (Twin A had a minor eye issue that was corrected through surgery) that have kept me very busy these past few weeks! During this time, we began to see a decline in our available monthly budget. As a military spouse, I still have not been able to fully establish myself in the professional world due to constantly moving. I work in marketing/public relations and it’s a field (like many) where if you don’t the proper experience, it’s really hard to stand out from other applicants. I look great on paper, I’ve been commended several times about my resume, however, my experience is lacking so when I try to get the positions that will strengthen my competitive edge, I don’t have much luck due to my lack of experience; talk about a Catch-22!
Once I had my twins, we moved within six months and as a result, I couldn’t find a job in my new state where the income covered more than just the cost of childcare. I became a full time SAHM and now, after almost one year of being unemployed, we’re starting to see the financial strain of only having one income. I decided to become more proactive in my professional development which in turn, will *hopefully* allow me to have more luck in my job search.
I turned to the internet. It’s so hard to find a legitimate online opportunity and so far I’m still testing the waters but I thought I might write about my experiences with what I have tried in order to help other people who may be stuck in their careers.
All experiences are below, but I’ve also provided links so if there’s only one that interests you, you don’t have to scroll through the endless text to find it!
1. FlexJobs (Why this site is great: FlexJobs is “specifically looking for the professional, legitimate jobs that offer some kind of flexibility – telecommuting, part-time or flextime schedules, or freelance contracts. When our researchers find a job listing that appears promising, they research the company for legitimacy.“)
I found out about this website through a Forbes.com article so I figured it had to be a good place to start! The secret to this website is if you go to their website and create an account, they will send you a 30% off coupon within a few days to complete the registration process. I ended up paying around $35 for 12 month access to their website. I’m still exploring the site along with what tools it has to offer, but while I’m working on that, I will say that so far, this website lives up to the hype. The jobs that I’ve seen so far are actually great jobs that offer excellent pay. From sales, seasonal and administrative to cyber security and CEO’s, this site really does offer a great range of REAL opportuntities.
2. Poshmark/Mercari (Fun but not a great money maker unless you have time AND money to invest.)
Personally, I don’t LOVE these, however, they keep me “entertained”. These are both online shopping platforms which allow you to sell new and used items, very similar to e-bay. It’s fun to do, but I feel as if though to really be successful here, you need to have time to dedicate to it while also having the funds to stock your online closets. This is hard to do if you don’t work lol Additionally, Poshmark takes 20% of your final sale (Mercari is still in beta so users currently get 100% of their commission – they just celebrated their two year anniversary so I’m not sure how much longer that will last). If you do decide to sell on these platforms, interested buyers may try to talk you down from your original listing price so that, along with the 20% AND the time invested and potential cost of shipping materials isn’t worth if if you don’t price your items wisely.
3. Lynda.com (Why this site is great: potentially free access “Over 4000 courses in Business, Technology and Creative Skills taught by industry experts.“)
With Lynda.com, you can take courses in ANYTHING that interests you – I found SO many courses that are relevant to my professional development in the first 20 minutes of navigating through the site. There is a fee to join, however, Lynda.com offers free access to certain library systems. I would definitely recommend anyone who can to invest in this website, whether it’s paid or not.
4. Macaroni Kid Publisher
My latest venture, I’m still waiting to get the information I requested to become a part of this online community which is essentially your own “digital publishing business”. This site provides information on community events for families with small children so if you are involved in your community, have the time to write about what’s going on and like exploring new things to do with your family this seems to be the best way to do it while also getting paid. I’m still unsure exactly how it works but I think there may be some sort of perk involving getting invitations to community events to advertise on your personal Macaroni site. More to come…