Cookies are becoming a regular fixture on kitchen counters, the bottom of the tree is filling up, and hints are being dropped left and right. It can all mean only one thing: the holidays are upon us. As with every break, the extra time presents a decision: use it to chill, or use it to profit.
When headlines like “6 Shows to Binge Watch Over Holiday Break” begin to arise, so does the temptation to veg out during your long-awaited weeks off. But this year, rather than watching endless reruns of holiday movies, what if your kids used the break to fill up their piggy bank or make progress on that invention? If they need a nudge, we’re here to help. Toss this list under their door (and don’t say a word.)
Snagging a Seasonal Gig
If you think a month isn’t enough time to make an employer happy, you haven’t seen the job boards recently. A simple search for “seasonal” on a leading job site resulted in dozens of listings for everything from “seasonal fulfillment center employee” to “seasonal retail clerk” and even “gift wrapping associate.” Because the holiday break is peak shopping season for retailers, they turn to seasonal employees for extra hands. Some jobs require employees to be 18 or older, but not all. (You may even have luck earning employment as one of Santa’s elves!) Here are some of the most popular seasonal gigs around the holidays:
· Delivery Driver “Holiday Helper”
· Retail Clerk
· Seasonal Catering Waitstaff
· Fulfillment Center Associate
· Tree farm retailer
· Gift wrapper
For even more ideas, check out our YouTube playlist, “How Teens Can Get a Job.”
What exactly does seasonal work look like?
Creating Your Own Income
Can’t find a short-term gig, or simply prefer the entrepreneurial life? The holidays present plenty of opportunities for inventive self-employment. Your first assignment? Brainstorming. Make a list of the unique tasks the holidays bring, then ask yourself how you could help make them easier. Perhaps you could wrap gifts for a few dollars per package, help string lights, or clean houses before company arrives. Need some inspiration? Consider the following:
· Tree trimming
· House cleaning
· Kitchen helper
· Personal gift shopper
· Holiday card envelope stuffing
Thinking Long Term
A seasonal gig is a respectable way to spend a break. And making your own income through an entrepreneurial pursuit is an impressive use of time. But there’s another way to use your break fruitfully: making big plans for the future! Lots of us have ideas for gadgets that make life easier, tasks simpler, or frustrations smaller. The next step? Doing something with them. Use your break to turn your idea into a plan. Our free business plan template is a great start. Ready for more than just planning? Consider devoting some family time to a Shark Tank-style family invention challenge.
Your Holiday Challenge
Marketing guru Seth Godin is a master of a lot of things, but among his top talents is the “Ship something everyday.” No, we’re not talking about the pile of gifts you need to bring to the post office. We’re talking about taking action. The concept is to commit to taking a single, small step toward your ambitions everyday. Perhaps it’s as small as sketching your concept on paper, sharing your plans with a relative, or opening a business checking account. Whatever it is, a three-week break could put you 21 steps closer to reaching your goal.