A Hobby is Born
Jenn (my wife) and I had our own personal hobbies. She was a history nerd turned Historian (graduate degree and all) and I had taken up making videos of the family. For a very long time, I had been the “video/computer guy” in my circle of friends and family. Making videos was a creative outlet for me, since being in the military does not lend itself to artistic output. (not complaining, just the truth)
We both loved other similar things like camping, fitness, travel…but none of those were always possible or easy for a military family that moves every couple of years.
The Walk with History YouTube channel started like so many others…with a “hey, I was watching YouTube and what if we made videos like xyz?”.
In February of 2021, my wife and I began a hobby together.
My first “joint” Hobby
What is a “joint” hobby?
A joint hobby is not something you do with someone else. A joint hobby is something you cannot do without someone else.
To be honest, I didn’t realize that until just now. I COULD NOT do the Walk with History YouTube channel without Jenn and she COULD NOT do it without me.
She finds the topics, does the research, searches out the locations, and keeps the idea generator going. I am not actually that interested in History – which is odd to say when I produce a history YouTube channel and (now) two history focused podcasts.
I produce everything. Video work (aside from vlog style shots), editing, publishing, website creation and management, finance tracking, podcast creation/production, and all around tech guy. Oh and I drive everywhere. Very important.
She loves her part of this and I love my part. We joke with people, when this hobby turned side hustle comes up, that it only took us 15 years to find something we like doing together. Most of our friends and family laugh at that because they know we have done a lot together…but this is the first thing that we are both truly passionate about.
Hobby to Side Hustle
I knew early on that this hobby could be a future business. I believe to my core, that we can make Walk with History something that will work as a business.
So it became a side hustle pretty quickly.
With YouTube as one of the foundations of this side hustle, this channel checked all the boxes for us and for our future success.
- Specific niche (history)? Check
- Someone who is passionate about the topic (Jenn)? Check
- Someone who loves to video and edit (me)? Check
- Topic(s) that have potential business opportunities (history, travel, education)? Check
- Consistency in production? Check
I tracked expenses early on and we even claim these on our taxes. We’re not working the system, we truly are treating this like a business. My plan is to slowly build this up enough, perhaps over the course of 7-10 years, so that this can be my full time “retirement job”.
To be honest, tracking it like a business has made some decisions easier. As I write this Jenn is in London, house sitting for some friends for two weeks. She works remotely so she is filming Walk with History videos in the morning and working her regular job in the afternoon/evenings. Buying that plane ticket is an expense we can claim to this business as are other expenses she may incur while in England and filming.
Side Hustle to Full-Time Job?
Success will take time.
There are no shortcuts to the top of the mountain – and we are climbing this mountain together, one step at a time.
Building this business from hobby, to side hustle, to future full-time business will easily take 10 years…less if I’m lucky…but success is just when preparation and luck finally meet.
Let me say that again…
Success is when preparation and luck finally meet.
If we got lucky to early…we would not succeed because we wouldn’t be prepared. Same goes for anyone. If your very first video went viral, what would that do for you? If your very first blog post was read by millions of people what would that give you?
You MUST have a foundation of preparation.
I know that Jenn and I will succeed because we are both passionate about this project and we have the drive and patience to build that foundation over the course of many years.
I have zero doubt in my mind that we will find success. What that success looks like?
Well that’s a different question…😁