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ChangingCourse.com, Find Your Life Mission and Live It

Issue 203

February 25, 2009

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Compass

ChangingCourse.com since 1995 dedicated to helping people like you to:

~Live Life on Purpose ~Work at What You Love ~Follow Your Own Road

Inside Today's Issue

Opportunity Knocks

Do You Need to Make Money Now? Avoid the Heartbreak and Myths of Marketing  

Featured Resource

Making Dreams Happen Audio Program 

Learning Opportunities

  • How to Get Money NOW: Unlocking the Hidden Money In Any Small Business Webinar with “Now Money” Expert Ron Romano

  • How to Create Your OWN Strong Economy This Year With Online Information Teleseminar With Ali Brown

  • "How to Attract Clients" Teleseminar with Fabienne Frederickson

  • LAST CHANCE TO REGISTER Marketing Tips and Techniques Opportunity Hour Tele-Brainstorming Call with Your Host, Valerie Young 

The View From the Other Side

Resources for a Change

This ad-free bimonthly newsletter is brought to you compliments of ChangingCourse.com.

Commitment leads to action. Action brings your dream closer. ~ Marcia Wieder

Opportunity Knocks: Creative Ways to Make a Living Without A Job

Do You Need to Make Money Now?
Avoid the Heartbreak and Myths of Marketing

By Valerie Young

Valerie and her rescue dog,
"Cokie Roberts"

The person on the other end of the phone was crying so hard that when she first started talking, it took a minute to even recognize her voice.

It was a friend who made a major career change three years ago from being a well-paid human resources manager to a massage therapist. Juggling massage school while working full-time was grueling. But after dealing with the bureaucracy of a large organization, the one-to-one healing aspect of her new work was highly satisfying.

In the last few years, she’s managed to attract a handful of regular clients. But, with her school loan still not fully paid off and office rent, it’s been tough going. On this particular day she was calling me from her car. She’d just come from her tax appointment and her accountant told my friend that her income was so low she should consider applying for food stamps. FOOD STAMPS! After all her hard work, I’d cry too.

My friend needs to find a way to make more money NOW. So I immediately leapt into marketing mode, offering concrete steps she could take to get new clients right away. We’d had this conversation many times before. Despite her desperate predicament, my friend’s response was the same as always. “I hate marketing.”

Not everyone hates marketing. Some people actually enjoy it. They just stink at it. Like the acquaintance who sent me a link to the Web site for her new corporate consulting business. Given the time she’s spent in the corporate world, I wasn’t surprised that her web site was all, “Our mission is to provide our clients with excellent blah blah blah… so they can (yawn) achieve their organizational mission to blah blah blah” and other tired corporate brochure sounding language.

She wanted to know what I thought. So I told her. The first thing she needed to do was change the copy to talk “to” her customer and not “about” them or “at” them. I checked in on her site last week. Turns out she really didn’t want my advice.

Finally, there’s a Changing Course Club Member who has one of THE best business ideas I’ve heard in a long time. He was all set to roll out his business when the economy tanked. Instead, he shelved the idea explaining, “It’s just not a good time to be in business.”

Now *I* want to cry.

What breaks my heart is that even in this economy, all three of these existing and new business owners SHOULD BE SUCCESSFUL. How? One word – marketing.

Marketing Myths Guaranteed to Doom Any Business

If you have never run a small business before, then you’re probably operating from a lot of myths about what marketing is and how it works. Succeeding in this, or any, economy means smashing through these four myths that are guaranteed to doom any business.

Marketing Myth #1: If you build it they will come.

Once you come up with a great idea or find the perfect niche, people will line up to pay you for it. Right? Wrong.

I understand how people would think this. I mean, my friend went to massage school to be a healer, not a marketer. The reality is though, when you start out in any new business, only about 20 percent of your time will actually be spent doing the thing you went into business to do. The other 80 percent is going to be spent on attracting people who want and can benefit from what you have to offer.

Over time, these percentages flip flop. But it takes time. There are things you can do to speed up the process. Specifically, the more time you spend learning about how best to serve your clients or customers – which is what marketing is all about – the faster you’ll be able to create a marketing strategy that is more automated and less time consuming, and the faster you’ll be able to get back to doing what it is you love to do.

But if you absolutely, positively want nothing to do with marketing, then you have one of two options. You can get a job and let your employer worry about marketing. For example, my friend could work in spa. Of course then she’d be right back to being an employee which would defeat the purpose, but it is an option.

The other thing you can do is outsource your marketing. Obviously this is going to cost you money, but if you either refuse to market yourself or just don’t want to take the time to learn how, then you don’t have a lot of options. Creative types like former consulting client Tom Kennedy of Kennedy Creative Construction Company, and Chief Marketing Implementor Shannon McCaffery ofMarketing Implementer LOVE to market. I say let them. (If you do work with Tom or Shannon mention my name to get the Changing Course discount.)

Marketing Myth #2: Marketing is slimy, tacky, or otherwise immoral.

Unfortunately, when a lot of people think about marketing, the first thing that leaps to mind is a high-pressure used car sales rep. If my massage therapist friend went around saying, “So, what’s it gonna take to put you on this massage table?” that would be one thing. But if you look at marketing as a means to solving somebody’s problem, then you realize that marketing is a means to serve.

A month before Christmas, my own massage therapist sent me the same holiday letter she always does. It’s the letter I look forward to every year and the one I would be disappointed not to receive. That’s because I know she’s going to offer her clients gift certificates for half price massages to give to our friends or family plus a discounted massage for myself.

Whenever she sends that letter, my massage therapist gets a steady stream of revenue during an otherwise slow period, plus the opportunity to potentially gain new clients. As a time-strapped holiday shopper, the gift certificates definitely solve a problem for me because I get to knock at least one item off my shopping list. And, as a stressed out holiday shopper who would otherwise put myself last on the giving list, the discounted massage is just the push I need to treat myself. It’s a win-win.

But whenever I try to get my massage therapist friend to send a similar offer to her clients, she refuses because she says, “Marketing is so tacky.” Not only does my friend suffer financially, but her clients don’t get all the great benefits I do. It’s a lose-lose.

Three days ago I got an email from a guy named Keith who was writing to basically thank me for selling him into the Changing Course Club. After feeling lost for the past ten years and several false starts, Keith says he is finally, “…putting one block on top of another and becoming the architect of my life as an entrepreneur.” Adding, “I made a commitment to myself this January that 2009 will be my year! No excuses, no detours, no turning (or looking) back.”

Remember when I said marketing is really solving a problem? Keith ended by saying, “I have been seeking for a long time what you are offering,” he wrote. “I can’t even begin to tell you how excited I was as I grabbed my credit card.” If you’ve bought into the marketing is tacky, bad, slimy, evil and all the other success-busting myths, think of Keith’s email and ask yourself, “Who am I to deprive anyone of such excitement?!”

Marketing Myth #3: A down economy is the worse time to launch or market a business.

Nonsense. Some of the most successful businesses were started during rocky economic times. Hyatt, Trader Joes, Fed Ex, Microsoft and hundreds of other companies all began during a recession, and the iPod came out right after 9-11!

I know there’s a tendency to cling to a false security of a job right now. But you can still get your business going on the side. When you think about it, you have a lot more control over starting a business than you do over finding a job!

When I launched Changing Course in the mid-90s, every day brought a new headline about huge corporate lay offs. Sound familiar? Still, I knew that it takes no more effort to think big as it does to think small. That’s why one of my first marketing tactics was to try to drum up some PR from major newspapers and magazines.

I sent out about a hundred press releases. Not one, but two reporters from The Wall Street Journal called. Soon after, I got a call from an editor at USA Weekend magazine. They were doing an entire edition around the recession. The theme of quitting your job to work at what you love was not quite a fit, but they were writing an article on going from a two-income household down to one and wanted to know if I had any tips.

Not really. But with the prospect of getting an entire sidebar with my name on it, you can bet I came up with some tips pretty fast! I even hopped on the phone to call a few subscribers and found three couples who USA Weekend ended up interviewing for the piece.

Marketing Myth #4: Marketing is too expensive.

Depending on what approach you take, marketing a business can cost nothing. Zero, zilch, nada. You just have to be creative!

With that USA Weekend article coming out in a month, I was poised for millions of people to learn about Changing Course. There was just one problem… it was 1997 and  I didn’t have one of these new fangled things called a Web site! And I definitely didn’t have the thousands of dollars it took at the time to get one built.

I tracked down the instructor who taught a course on Web design at a local community college to see if her students were looking for projects. I was able to get two 40-something career changers to design a great starter site in time for the USA Weekend magazine article at no charge, and these fledging business owners got to list a live site in their design portfolios. Another win-win.

It was during this same lean economic time that I partnered with a local bank to offer a lunch-time workshop called "Taking Your Business to the Next Level." I think I charged something like $100 a person for the four-week series.

The bank got potential customers in the door and some good PR. The fact that the bank was co-sponsoring it gave me the credibility I needed to get a free pitch in the local newspaper. Plus, the bank let me use their conference room and even printed the flyers so I had no marketing costs. Another win-win.

Are there times when you do have to spend money on marketing? Absolutely. Spend wisely and marketing will pay you back many times over.

Over the years, I’ve probably spent $100,000 on marketing. But, of that, “maybe” $3000 was on paid advertising. The rest of my marketing dollars have gone to filling shelves with self-study courses and books… attending teleseminars and live events… paying to be in high-priced Mastermind groups with some of the best and brightest marketing minds in the country… and other means of educating myself about how to serve my market in a way that solves a problem for them, is in line with my personality and values, and allows me to continue to support myself so I can continue to help others escape the job world and create the life they really want!

Common Sense Meets Creativity

Valerie with Drayton Bird

There is nothing magical about marketing. In fact, a lot of marketing is nothing more than common sense. In his book Commonsense Direct and Digital Marketing, British marketing legend Drayton Bird tells readers, “Try to sell something connected to your own favorite hobby or interest,” adding that a good friend of his lived off a business in rare coins for 30 years. “It’s much easier to work hard at something you know and love.”

Drayton’s book was originally written more than twenty years ago. Reprinted numerous times, it continues to be a must have on the bookshelves of many of the world’s top direct marketers.

I had the privilege of meeting the 70-something year old Drayton at Yanik Silver’s Underground Online Marketing Seminar last week where he shared his “Ten Commandments of Marketing.” My three favorite are…

#1 Start with the customer, not the product. We get so enamored with our ideas that we forget who they are intended to serve. When you begin with the end user, your product will take care of itself. A great way to find out what your customer really wants is to put together a survey using a free survey creator like SurveyMonkey.com.

#6 Use a proven formula. People sometimes make the mistake of trying to be original. It’s actually a lot smarter to follow people and companies that have already figured out what works and learn from them. (See Learning Opportunities below for some great places to start including the chance to get some free advice.)

#10 Never, ever give up. Drayton understands that too many people try something once, get poor results, and give up. But, like life, marketing is a process of trial and error. The first time I marketed my Outside the Job Box Career Expert and Small Business Idea Consultant Training Program it was to a small, but very enthusiastic, list of about 50 people who had been begging me for this opportunity to train to do what I do.

Not a single person signed up. Two days later I sent a slightly revised version of the same marketing copy to a larger number of people. That time it worked to the tune of $78,000.

There is nothing more heartbreaking than talented people who squander their gifts by never figuring out how to share them with the world. And marketing myths are just that... myths. Even during these challenging economic times you can be successful, you can make money, you can grow your business --and your dreams. So what are you waiting for?

Marketing myths are just that. Even during these challenging economic times, you can be successful, you can make money, you can grow your business and your dreams. So what are you waiting for?

P.S. Don’t forget to grab your fully downloadable Making Dreams Happen program featuring Barbara Sher, Barbara Winter, and me at the insane sale price of $67. This 3-Day Rewarding the Action Takers Sale ends Thursday, February 26th. This offer will not be repeated any time soon. To listen to an excerpt, or to learn more about Making Dreams Happen, go to ChangingCourse.com/makingdreamshappen.htm.

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About the Author

"Turning Interests Into Income" expert, Valerie Young, abandoned her corporate cubicle to become the Dreamer in Residence at ChangingCourse.com offering resources to help you discover your life mission and live it. Her career change tips have been cited in Kiplinger's, The Wall Street Journal, USA Today Weekend, Woman's Day, and elsewhere and on-line at MSN, CareerBuilder, and iVillage.com. An expert on the Impostor Syndrome, Valerie has spoken on the topic of How to Feel as Bright and Capable as Everyone Seems to Think You Are to such diverse organizations as Daimler Chrysler, Bristol-Meyers Squibb, Harvard, and American Women in Radio and Television.

To read more articles about how to work at what you love without a job go to ChangingCourse.com/articles.htm  

Rather than living a life filled with self-doubt and inner stress caused by someone else's decision, I would take control. ~ Byron Pulsifer

Featured Resource

Tap Your Wildest Dreams… Find Your True Calling… and Take a Giant Leap Toward a Whole New Life…

Six months from now, you could be doing work you really love...
and enjoying the freedom, flexibility, and quality of life you deserve.

Find out from experts Barbara Sher, Barbara Winter, andValerie Young exactly how you can make it happen… starting today.

Making Dreams Happen is the ONLY audio program ever that features not one, not two, but three internationally-recognized career and life change experts...

~ Best-selling author and Oprah guest Barbara Sher best known for books like "Wishcraft" (over a million copies sold!), "I Could Do Anything If I Only Knew What It Was," and her latest book for people who love too many things -- "Refuse to Choose"

~ Barbara Winter, best-selling author of "Making a Living Without a Job" - now in it's 18 printing!

~ And me -- Turning-Interests-Into-Income Expert Valerie Young. I've spoken at companies like Procter & Gamble, Boeing, Intel, and UBS and along the way gotten some great press from The Wall Street Journal, Kiplinger's money magazine, USA Weekend magazine, end elsewhere....

The new all digital, fully downloadable version of Making Dreams Happen normally sells for $97.

A word that came up over and over last weekend when I was at Yanik Silver's Underground Online Marketing Seminar was action. Successful people take what they learn and they act on it. They are decisive.

Yes, I want to do my part to make things as affordable as possible for you to get where you want to go faster... but I also want to encourage you to be decisive, to move past analysis paralysis and to instead listen to your intuition.

So, between now and midnight on Thursday, February 26, 2008 -- that's less than 36 hours -- you have the opportunity to purchase and  download at your leisure the complete set of Making Dreams  Happen -- over 20 hours of dream-enabling audio and over 150  pages of Speaker Handouts -- for only $67.

If you're not sure if Making Dreams Happen is right for you, you can actually listen to inspiring excerpts from Barbara Sher, Barbara Winter, and me. For your complimentary excerpts, and to learn more about Making Dreams Happen, go to...

                    http://ChangingCourse.com/makingdreamshappen.htm

But you'll need to place your order before midnight on Thursday to receive your $30 SAVINGS and get Making Dreams Happen for only $67.

If you're really ready to create a life that you love, I encourage you to tap into one of the most uniquely inspiring and informative resources from three top experts all dedicated to helping you make your entrepreneurial dream of making a living doing what you love a reality!

 

With courage you will dare to take risks, have the strength to be compassionate and the wisdom to be humble. Courage is the foundation of integrity. ~ Keshavan Nair

Compass

The Changing Course Newsletter
Copyright 2009  
Lisa Tarrant, Editor
Valerie Young, Publisher [email protected] www.ChangingCourse.com 7 Ripley Road
Montague, MA 01351

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If someone sent this to you, don't depend on your friend for this great information. Get your complimentary subscription at ChangingCourse.com/ezine.htm

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Often the difference between a successful person and a failure is not one has better abilities or ideas, but the courage that one has to bet on one's ideas, to take a calculated risk - and to act. ~ Maxwell Maltz

Learning Opportunities

Here are four opportunities happening over the next couple of weeks where you can get free or low cost marketing advice from some of the brightest marketing minds on the planet.

Since these seminars are happening right NOW and are expected to fill quickly, make sure you do that today.

How to Get Money NOW:
Unlocking the Hidden Money In Any Small Business Webinar with “Now Money” Expert Ron Romano

On a personal note, I first met Ron Romano last May when we both joined Yanik Silver’s Mastermind group. All I knew at the time was he was a marketing expert, he was from Canada, and he was a really nice guy.

Valerie with Ron Romano

As it turns out, Ron is a super-successful marketing expert. He’s been behind the scenes for over a decade with many of the top marketers and entrepreneurs in North America, integrating their marketing into money-making turn-key systems.

Among other things, he co-authored master marketer Dan Kennedy’sNo B.S. Direct Marketing – The Ultimate No Holds Barred Kick Butt Take No Prisoners Direct Marketing For Non-Direct Marketing Businesses.

He’s also a contributing author along with Donald Trump, Ron LeGrand and Dan Kennedy in Walking With The Wise Real Estate Investor. Ron’s chapter is on "How to Implement Automated Systems to Create More Leads and More Sales.”

Ron has a free Webinar coming up this week that’s aimed primarily at people who already have a business and who need to figure out how they can make more money from their business – right now!

After listening to a couple of Ron’s CDs, it's pretty obvious that his advice is also invaluable to anyone who is “thinking” about launching a business and who wants to make sure they start generating money as quickly as possible.

One of the things I like about the marketing systems Ron teaches is that they work for people who have a “brick & mortar” or other non-Internet based business as well as for people who are doing business primarily online.

Ron’s expertise is in helping small business owners see the hidden money in their business that’s right in front of them – if they know where to look and what to do when they find it. You’ll learn:

  • How current business owners can increase sales instantly

  • The 4 areas of “Missed Opportunities” where you can grab money NOW

  • 10 tested and proven marketing strategies that will increase sales instantly

  • Offline marketing systems for online marketers guaranteed to boost profits

Thursday, February 26, 2009
8:00pm Eastern Time
Cost: Free
Click Here to Register

When I saw Ron last weekend, all I could get out of him was that there would be some kind of free bonus gift for everyone at the Webinar. As of this morning, there were only 117 spots left.

If the idea of making money – NOW – appeals to you, register now to grab your seat atChangingCourse.com/recommends/nowmoneywebinar

If you’re not sure this webinar can benefit you, you can sign up to see how your current marketing strategy stacks up at ChangingCourse.com/recommends/marketingreview


How to Create Your OWN Strong Economy This Year With Online Information Teleseminar With Ali Brown

In this free one-time only teleseminar, internet marketing guru Ali Brown will be sharing:

  • 5 ways to recession-proof your business right away

  • how to earn passive income from information products

  • how to avoid the three most common mistakes entrepreneurs make online

  • and more

This is also the time when Ali will be offering a one-time $500 savings on her Online Success Blueprint System. I’ve been on these calls with Ali, sometimes as a guest speaker and sometimes as an eager learner. Even if you pass on the total system I know you’ll walk away with some really good ideas – free.

Thursday, March 5, 2009
8:00pm Eastern Time
Cost: Free
Click Here to Register

Last year this call filled up quickly and a lot of very upset people got shut out. If you want to listen in, I would sign up now.


"How to Attract Clients" Teleseminar with Fabienne Frederickson

If you are a consultant, speaker, author, healing practioner, or other solopreneur who is selling services, Fabienne Frederickson is the marketing expert for you.

Fabienne first got onto my radar screen because we are are both contributing authors in Ali Brown's book, Power and Soul. But my first real connection was when she and I were guests on one of Ali's Teleseminars. Since then we've had the opportunity to chat a few times by phone and over the last year I've gotten some really great feedback about her Client Attraction program.

Fabienne began a free 3-part Teleseminar series in January where she's been breaking down her own step-by-step system for attracting ideal high-paying clients while working less and making more -- anywhere from an additional $5000 to as much as $85,000 a month. The steps she used are easy to replicate so you can adapt them to attract clients to your business as well.

Fabienne's final free Teleseminar in the Client Attraction Marketing & Mindset Breakthroughs is coming up Tuesday March 10th. If you missed the first two calls don't worry. Once you sign up for the March Teleseminar you'll get to listen to the previous classes.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009
8:00pm Eastern Time
Cost: Free
Click Here to Register

PLAN AHEAD: These calls are a great way to preview Fabienne's *live* workshop coming up April 15-17 in Los Angeles, California.

At the end of upcoming Teleseminar, she'll be making an special offer to those actually on the call. There were over 2500 people on her first call so be sure to register early to make sure you can get on the line.

If you can't make the March 10th call -- or just want to plan ahead by learning more about the live workshop and the special time-limited payment plan option now -- go toChangingCourse.com/recommends/marketingworkshop


LAST CHANCE TO REGISTER...
Marketing Tips and Techniques "Opportunity Hour" Tele-Brainstorming Call with Your Host,
Valerie Young
 

Valerie YoungMarketing is nothing more than applied creativity.

You don't even need a lot of money. All it takes is a little creative thinking, which is a good thing because Real Success Without a Real Job author Ernie Zelinski calls creative thinking "the poor man's wealth." Ernie was spot on when he said, "There is nothing quite as exhilarating as coming up with a brilliant idea, putting it to good use, and eventually being rewarded handsomely for my efforts by the marketplace."

In this Teleseminar I'll be sharing:

  • low-cost and no-cost ways to get the word out about your business
  • marketing strategies for people who hate to market
  • co-marketing strategies

Plus, it’s one thing to hear from the “gurus.” It’s another to learn from regular people in the trenches. That’s why I’ve invited several surprise guests to share their marketing experiences and favorite tactics as well including Tom Kennedy ofKennedy Creative Construction Company and Outside the Job Box Career Consultants Kate Fessler ofInspiration4Success and Sue Newell of Life First Work.

So join a community of dreamers and dream doers for an exhilarating hour of creative thinking, opportunity angling, and possibility-provoking fun! The rewards could be enormous!

Do you have ideas or interests but you're just not sure if and how you can turn them into income? Post your ideas at the Changing Course Club on the Q & A Discussion Forum or email[email protected] and they could be selected for the Hot Seat at the next Opportunity Hour Teleclass!

Thursday, February 26
8:00-9:00 p.m. Eastern Time
Free for Changing Course Club Members (Sign Up in the Club Lounge)*
$19.00 for Non Members**
Click Here to Register

*This series is free to current members of theChanging Course Club.
**100 percent of Non-Members registration fees go to the non-profit micro-grant organization TrickleUp.org

 

Stand up to your obstacles and do something about them. You will find that they haven't half the strength you think they have. ~ Norman Vincent Peale

Compass

The View From theOther Side

"Don’t give up! Stick to your vision. Here’s a big one: If you were given an idea, whether by God or the universe or it came from inside you, remember—that is your vision. It may not have been given to someone else because they can’t see it. And you don’t have time to wait around for certain people to understand it. When you have a vision and a dream, you have to move on it.”

~ Taja Sevelle, Executive Director & Founder, Urban Farming

Compass

 

Resources for a Change

There are lots of low-cost marketing resources out there – you just need to look!

Guerrilla Marketing was the first of Jay Conrad Levinson’s popular series. I first read Guerrilla Marketing in the 80s and it’s still a keeper for anyone trying to market on a shoe string budget. I seem to recall some fabulous advice to anyone starting out in the restaurant or specialty food business to bring free food and discount coupons to the stylists at the local hair salons – talk about the buzz factor! (Amazon.com)

The 3rd Annual BlogHer Conference is a crash course for women bloggers on best practices for reaching women consumers online, bringing in ad revenue, and other business and marketing strategies for bloggers. Last year over 1000 people attended and the agenda looks great. It's not happening until July 23-25th, 2009 in Chicago BUT the early bird registration price ends February 28th. (BlogHer.com)

500 Tips for Marketing Your Craftsby crafterA. B. Petrow includes hundreds of tips about how to find and get into craft fairs and how to make money once there. Also covered is doing your own photography, making your own displays, travel tips, designing your trade show booth, marketing your crafts to craft galleries and other wholesale markets, selling on the internet, putting your crafts on a web catalog, making your own website, and selling on eBay as well as advice for pricing, planning, bookkeeping, selling, advertising, promotion, packaging, copyright, health, computers, taxes, sales reps, etc. (Amazon.com)

Alberta Women Entrepreneurs’ “Innovative Approaches to Success” is a powerful two-day event focused on expanding the horizons of Alberta's female entrepreneurs and celebrating success. I’ll be speaking at the April 1-2 event. But if you are not from Alberta there are other government-sponsored provincial and state events and resources designed specially to help entrepreneurs via loans, networking opportunities, skill building, and advice. Google your province or state to find a program near you. (AWEBusiness.com)

 

 

Note: Changing Course does not accept paid advertisements from any of the resources listed here. This list is provided to expand your thinking about just how many interesting ways there are to make a living without a job!