Side gigs as experiments

Side projects are experiments

I like the concept of “experiments” or, as I call it, my own “digital & design lab,” to refer to a side projects portfolio. I also like the idea of taking “MakeCations” dedicated to side ventures.

I’ve been researching about side ventures, especially instructive experiences and strategies for sustaining them on top of a demanding full-time job. I’m with the camp that believes in the mutual benefits of holding a full-time job AND pursuing side projects too.

I count myself lucky that my current job integrates multiple interests of mine — higher education, technology, design, communications, a culture of learning — and that it’s challenging and has allowed me to grow in the past 5+ years I’ve worked there. I’m thankful for all the opportunities my full-time job has afforded me. Having said that, I am challenging myself to grow more, beyond what my job would typically offer me.

And this is where my side projects come in. Side projects are an “incredible way to utilize excess cognition and creative capacity while learning new things.” They’re excellent for flexing new & emerging skills, for applying relevant trends & technologies to solve concrete problems. They’re great ways that I can sustain momentum and edge as I keep building skills/talent/confidence as a professional, and for knowing myself more holistically through practice.

I’ve started curating a Pinterest board about side projects where I’ve collected some articles of use to me, and potentially to others. I welcome thoughts from others too who have done this successfully. If we’re on similar wavelengths and have complementary talents, we should chat.

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2 comments

  1. […] portfolio means more than just a site: it’s my own side venture. It’s my digital lab, a series of experiments. Experiments that will help me learn, apply, keep the fire in my belly burning. And later, some of […]

  2. […] Make your side projects successful: treat them as experiments (from 99U.com) (mariefunkin.wordpress.com) […]

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