How to Create Multiple Income Streams

••• Photo © Erin Huffstetler

One income may keep your bills paid, but it won’t secure your future. If you want true financial security, and the freedom to live life on your own terms, you need to create multiple income streams for yourself – and that’s not as hard as you might think. Let’s break it down into manageable steps:

1. Protect Your First Income Stream

While you’re busy building new income streams, you’re going to need a way to keep your bills paid and you’re going to need cash to get your new endeavors off the ground.

Your current job can cover both of those – but only if you hang on to it. That means you have to continue to work hard at what you do and to treat it as your first priority. If you don’t like your job, like what it can do for you. Take the money that you earn, and use it to build the income streams that will provide your escape.

2. Define your goals

Spend some time thinking about what you hope to accomplish with your new income streams. Are you just after a little spending money, or enough cash to get out of debt? Are you saving up for something special? Are you trying to earn enough to walk away from your current job? Is financial security your main objective?

3. Decide how much you’re willing to invest

Achieving your goal is going to take time and probably some money, too. Decide how much of both you’re willing to invest. Do you want these to be passive income streams that require little work after you get them set up?

Do you have the energy to take on an ongoing project? How much financial risk are you comfortable with? How soon do you want to see a return on your investment? Is it okay if it takes longer?

4. Consider your options

Now, that you know what you want to accomplish, decide how you’re going to make it happen.

Brainstorm ways that you could create income streams around your interests and talents. What are you good at? What do you enjoy doing in your spare time? Is there something that you could teach other people to do? Do you have unique skills that there’s a demand for? Is there something you could sell? Do a little research to see what it would take to create an income stream around your favorite ideas – enough to determine if they’re still interesting to you and have the potential to meet your goals.

5. Pick an idea, and dive in

Have more than one income stream that you’re excited to create? That’s great, but it’s best to start with just one. Pick your favorite, and throw yourself into making it work. Keep at it until your stream is running smoothly and earning you a good income.

6. Add another income stream

Now, pick another idea off of your list, and throw yourself into making that one successful. Repeat the process until you’ve created enough income streams to meet (or exceed) your goals.


  • Stick to ideas that excite you (and will continue to excite you). You don’t want your income streams to become a grind
  • Be careful not to take on more income streams than you can handle. Creating multiple streams is about creating freedom – not tying yourself down
  • Avoid shortcuts and get-rich-quick schemes. The best income streams are built on hard work and quality product

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