I’m a big believer in the saying, “Age is just a number.” Most people will be exasperated at the notion of working at the age of thirteen.
Most people also kind of drudge through life, going with the flow, and never really take any initiative of their own.
The truth is, that every person is a unique individual. I never like to talk down to children, because that’s worse than judging a book from its cover, it’s a self-fulfilling prophecy!
Kids develop and grow at a very rapid rate and are very impressionable. If you coddle them too much and treat them like idiots, guess what they end up thinking of themselves?
Now, I’m not saying put a hard hat on every 13-year-old and send them off the contribute to the workforce, quite the opposite actually.
Our educational system is severely lacking real-world skills and practical experiences.
Meaningful work is by far one of the most fulfilling things to a human being, and in matters of lifelong missions, earlier is always better.
With that said, there is an implicit pressure related to any kind of work.
Once you start doing something that involves others, you have to respect their time and match their needs. Deadlines and numbers start to loom pretty quickly.
If you are interested in trying something or making money as a newly formed teenager, any sensible and reasonable adult will appreciate your efforts and diligence.
You will find many unreasonable people as well, but don’t let that stop you!
Let’s get right into it, so you can see all the possibilities.
- 1. Start A YouTube Channel
- 2. Create a Blog
- 3. Twitch
- 4. Fill Surveys
- 5. TikTok
- 6. Typing For People
- 7. Print On Demand
- 8. Create Content Across The Board
- 9. Dropshipping
- 10. Handmade Crafts
- 11. Flip Things On eBay
- 12. Odd Jobs
- 13. Dog Walking
- 14. Test Products
- 15. Newspaper Delivery
- 16. Washing Cars
- 17. Family Business
- 18. Self Publishing
- 19. Tutor
- 20. Freelancing
- 21. Performance Arts
- 22. Testing Apps
- 23. Watching Videos
- 24. Proofreading
- 25. Affiliate Marketing
- 26. Start Your Own Business
- 27. Voice Acting
- To The Conclusion
1. Start A YouTube Channel
Have you ever heard of Jimmy’s story? He’s the man who started Mr.Beast, the current most subscribed YouTube channel on Earth that’s owned by an individual.
I bet you didn’t know this, but he also started YouTubing at the age of thirteen. Today, he owns about a dozen channels, each with over ten million subscribers.
When he started, everyone he knew called him crazy. They said that he was way too obsessed and that it was unhealthy for him to miss out on his so-called childhood. That’s why he even hid his channel from his mother.
When his mom did find out, long before he became successful, she was overjoyed that he had such dedication. All he did for years was play Call Of Duty Modern Warfare II Online, by the way.
After that, he struggled a lot with trying to find the right format for him, and slowly built his team over the years. I can guarantee you though, if you ask him about his experience, he’ll say that he loved every second of it.
Today, the same people that called him insane hail him as a genius. I think that pretty much says it all. Jimmy didn’t earn anything for years, but today, he’s a billionaire.
He started off chasing numbers as well but found his own love for the process along the way. If you like the idea, go for it!
2. Create a Blog
I could keep going throughout this list by giving you success stories just like Jimmy’s in almost every job category, but I think that one is more than enough. Now I want to focus more on compatibility and give options to all kinds of people.
If you were interested in literature and happen to read as a hobby, you might be surprised how much you will enjoy blogging as well.
Writing as a whole can be daunting, a book or a novel is a very demanding project. Blogs are the perfect starting point for any aspiring or budding author. (speaking as one myself here)
Making money from a blog is a different thing, but absolutely nothing is stopping you from trying it out and seeing how you like it.
You don’t even have to think about marketing or anything, just write 30-40 articles on any single topic of your interest, and Google will likely start ranking your website if it’s good stuff.
You can start earning in just a few hours once you have an audience. My personal favorite platform is Medium, check out this article about it for more info.
Ask a professional for help if you’d rather build a website for something more specific, they will help you out! You can also start a fiction story blog on other sites like Wattpad.
Hey, if you love playing video games, you don’t have to worry too much, because you can do so much with it nowadays. Ages 13 to 18 are perfect for trying things out, if you don’t like something, just drop it!
With a simple internet connection and a webcam, you can start connecting with people over your love for video games through Twitch, it allows people who are thirteen and beyond to join the platform.
You will find that live streaming is a very collaborative project. Check out other people on Twitch and find cool ideas for things you want to do.
Your parents might have bought you a lovely PC setup, and with Twitch, you can sponsor the newest games yourself!
4. Fill Surveys
If you are looking for something quick and short-term, there are perfect options for you as well. Check out Swagbucks, to start off with. Although, there are many platforms just like it.
You can signup here, and get paid a few bucks for simple things like filling out surveys. All kinds of people need various types of data for their own work, and other working people just don’t have the time or bandwidth to share it with them.
That’s why filling out relevant surveys, collecting, and sharing information is a totally legitimate way to earn money.
Every platform is different and this one is famous for letting people become overnight successes. Look at Khaby Lame for inspiration.
If you happen to have a part of your life that other people might find interesting, you if you love to mess around and have fun by filming short videos, TikTok can legitimately earn you a massive following.
As I said before, once you have people’s attention, there are n number of things you can sell them to make money. Check out this article to learn more about it:
You can even get sponsors that pay you, simply for promoting their products, regardless of how many sales you actually illicit.
6. Typing For People
Maybe you really love the feeling of tying on your keyboard, but you don’t really like to think too much or come up with new things to write.
Just like the process of filling up surveys, there are so many small tasks that people really need to get done, but no one has the time to do them!
You have a few different options here, there are these things called Transcriptions where you have to type out what is being said in audio form.
Then there is data entry, where people have a lot of unorganized info and they need someone to fit it all into certain formats. Be sure to choose something that feels good, though.
I won’t lie to you, this is not very fun work. But this option is for those who want some quick cash for an honest day’s work. I suggest a platform like Fiverr to find these opportunities.
7. Print On Demand
Do you have an Ipad that you love to make art with? Almost all children love to draw things at one point or another. Well, there’s this amazing business model called Print On Demand.
On amazing platforms like Printful, you can choose a plain product, and upload your own design to make it your own. Then you can sell these products to earn money!
T-Shirts are the most common item here, and all you really need is an Ipad or a laptop to make designs on. The actual products aren’t printed until an order is made and money is received.
No need to worry about making the products, packaging, customer service, or anything like that, all you really need is to upload the design. Then, you can sell your T-Shirts throughout the world on platforms like Amazon.
Speaking of Amazon, check out this article on its POD service called Merch On Demand.
8. Create Content Across The Board
If Twitch, YouTube, TikTok, or Blogging doesn’t suit your fancy, there are so many other options. If you like to take pictures, there’s Instagram, for illustrations, there is Pinterest, and the list keeps on going!
Everyone uses something or the other, so explore each one until you find the one you like. Remember, it’s more important for you to taste things rather than succeed if you don’t feel strongly about anything in particular.
Try your hand on Twitter, Facebook, and Snapchat, then see what sticks. Each one has its own audience and winning formulas, study them well, young Padawan.
Just like Print On Demand, we don’t have to manage inventory, deliveries, or customer service in a dropshipping model. It is also a great, thoroughly tested way of earning money online.
There is a big potential for earning a ton too, especially if you can muster up some funds to sign up for Shopify. All you have to do is find valid drop shippers, curate a catalog of products, build a store, and then promote it.
That might seem like a lot, but everything you need to know is out there for free, and you can really make this one work, based on Shivansh’s own experience (that’s this website’s founder), who started a dropshipping store when he was sixteen!
It doesn’t have to be expensive either, knowledge and awareness are half the battle. Check out this in-depth article on how to do it with a total of zero dollars.
10. Handmade Crafts
Perhaps you are a more creative person who likes to work with your hands. By any chance, do you love to make paintings that are good enough to frame on a wall?
With popular worldwide platforms like Etsy, you can potentially find a market for and sell anything you might be making to someone or the other. If that sounds interesting, do check out Etsy.
By the way, you can even sell digital products here!
11. Flip Things On eBay
Shoutout to Gary Vee for this one. The man is famous for promoting what we call garage sale flipping. It’s a pretty simple idea.
Websites like eBay allow people to create a listing for anything and everything, and people can bid on them like an auction.
There are many other platforms where you can sell things as well, I mean pretty much anyone can sign up as an Amazon Seller after a few formalities.
The core concept is similar to Dropshipping in a way. You find things for cheap, then you sell them for fair but higher prices, and then you pocket the difference!
If you can polish your treasure hunt rewards to increase their value before re-selling, that’s even better! A great way to make a quick buck.
12. Odd Jobs
Time to bring it back to the neighborhood. Listen, you don’t have to build a website, sign up on Fiverr, or start a project like a YouTube channel. Sometimes, the best things are right in your backyard. In this case, quite literally too.
Look around your neighborhood and find opportunities. Maybe an old woman down the street would love to have her groceries delivered by you? How about watering plants, taking clothes to the dry cleaners, or mowing the lawn?
Talking to people around your block and negotiating these deals is also invaluable sales experience, not to mention a great way to do networking. All these things add up, so if there are busy people with some extra money in your lane, don’t sleep on it!
13. Dog Walking
Pretty self-explanatory after the last point. An added plus if you happen to love dogs as well. We all love man’s best friend, but they do need to go at least twice a day.
You do have to be comfortable with handling other people’s fur babies though, and occasionally you will have to clean up after them too.
But hey, no pain, no gain.
14. Test Products
There are other platforms where you can get paid, or receive free products for testing them and giving honest reviews. Anyone selling something online is made or broken by their reviews and ratings.
Check out this article to explore your options more deeply.
15. Newspaper Delivery
It’s amazing what you can achieve with just a bicycle, your will, and some free time. Getting up early and being on time is a must though. Don’t consider this if that’s a deal breaker.
If that’s fine for you, then you can earn up to a hundred bucks a month on average for most newspapers. Hey, someone’s gotta deliver all that news, might as well be you, right?
16. Washing Cars
This will depend on where you are and more importantly, how tall your height is. Working people buy cars to make their lives easier, though. Most people don’t really enjoy taking care of them.
Where there is a problem, there is also an opportunity. This mindset will take you far in life.
17. Family Business
Most teenagers don’t really have a picture-perfect relationship with their parents. You might not even be on talking terms with them, and that’s totally fine.
Still, one way or another, they did manage to pay the bills at least, until this point. There is nothing better than working with your family because you can trust and rely on them.
The environment is open and communication tends to flow freely. You don’t have to like the people you work with, but it does help in life if you have a loving relationship with your parents.
Getting into a business they already own, or starting a new venture with them can be a wonderful way to improve the situation. You’ll be surprised how better it can be than trying to find something for yourself.
18. Self Publishing
I know I said that blogging is the best way to start writing for beginners. I also said that every person is different, and I was really generalizing back then.
I mean, just check out this easy way anyone can write and publish a book nowadays! No joke, though, it’s easy as can be.
What will make the difference is how good the book is, and how much the demand for it. If you have all that, you can use cheats to fast-track your progress.
Either way, writing a book of your own is a massive confidence boost, an impressive credential, and an amazing learning experience.
It’s a bit odd to think of a thirteen-year-old teacher, but this article isn’t for your average teenager, is it? A ton of people nowadays are fortunate enough to have a great hobby or two since their childhood.
Take a look at Udemy for inspiration. The website has a course on forgiveness, and guess what? IT SELLS!
If you have any semblance of a skill or talent, you can easily find someone who wants to learn it and charge them tuition.
Data entry and Transcription is typically freelance work itself, but there are a lot of other options out there. Think of freelancing as doing odd jobs in the online world.
Just as someone wants their lawn mowed because they don’t have the time to do it themselves, other people want their scripts to be proofread or subtitles to be written.
Well, maybe the proofreading is mostly done by AI nowadays, but you get the point. UpWork is a great place for this, but there are certainly better ones out there for specific types of work.
For example, there is Behance for graphics and illustrations, just to name one. You can find all kinds of categories on websites like UpWork and Fiverr, so be sure to check them out.
21. Performance Arts
All kinds of people need younger performers for their projects in marketing, entertainment, and even education. Confident teens who can face a crowd should explore these opportunities as well.
Christian Bale, Johnny Depp, and Brad Pitt all got their start as child actors. Then there are other things like dancing and singing.
You don’t have to make a career out of it, and for things like advertisements, you don’t need any talent either.
With online content creation, you can practice some of the skills related to acting and if you were already interested in theater, nothing better!
22. Testing Apps
Speaking of freelancing, there is another really cool platform named UserTesting.
It’s a place where software developers can connect with normal users to test out their products before launch and get solid feedback on them.
All kinds of developers have different target audiences, and UserTesting will pay you for you trying out different apps and websites, and giving feedback.
They might request you to share video reactions as well since they want to provide developers with natural reactions to their work.
23. Watching Videos
Then there are websites like InboxDollars, that pay you real money to do things like watching paid videos. You won’t earn millions of dollars this way, but it’s good to make a quick buck for doing your daily activities.
I’m sure you watch stuff and advertisements anyway, why not mix up some of the things you like with paid things to earn dozens of dollars every month? It’s free to signup.
If you have good reading skills, there are still some great opportunities for proofreading and editing.
I know we might think that everyone is using AI nowadays, but writing and editing are totally different things, and even AI required supervision.
The truth is, most working people just don’t have the mental bandwidth to read and edit massive pieces of information and AI is still far from trustworthy. Check out Reedsy to explore opportunities.
25. Affiliate Marketing
Affiliate Marketing is a mainstay of our website, and we have seen great potential in it. It’s a lot like a sales job, where you earn commissions through sales of products that you have to promote.
Check out our in-depth guide to see how you can leverage this incredible industry and combine it with your own ideas to find creative ways to do it.
26. Start Your Own Business
While you cannot really work as an employee until you are an adult, nothing stops you from starting your own business as a 13-year-old. You saw many options on this list, but business is all about making money.
Emphasis on the “make” part. This means that if you can create something that’s useful for any group of people, you can turn it into a business. If you have any such idea, this is a great time for you to stretch your legs and take it for a walk.
You can gain invaluable insights through experience and with time, patience, and a lot of hard work, you can make a ton of money. Start small though, like really small.
There are a zillion different ways to do it. Like starting a lemonade stand, and growing it gradually. If you mow lawns, you can make it into a business and turn it into an agency for hiring helping hands.
The biggest things are self-awareness, so you know your own strengths and weaknesses, and understanding the world around you, so you can find viable opportunities that are worth your time and energy.
27. Voice Acting
You don’t have to be confident to work in the performing arts either, there are all kinds of other options like singing and creating online content as well.
Check out the amazing platform called Voices, for instance. It’s a massive platform where you can freelance voice acting work. If that sounds interesting, check out what opportunities await you there right now.
To The Conclusion
Those were just some cool ways that a teen can start earning money before becoming an adult. Some of them are more demanding than others, but each of them requires a very specific kind of person who can excel at it.
If you don’t find any enjoyment or meaning in doing something, you won’t feel like doing it for very long. No matter what you choose to do, there will be difficulties and hardships along the way.
And that is especially true if your aim is to live a carefree life that’s full of peace and joy. Rather than trying to find something that makes you happy, look for something that you are willing to suffer for.
Everyone will tell you that you should take it easy, rest, and enjoy while you are young because this is the only time you can afford to do it. That is the conventional wisdom for good reason.
The adult world is so obsessed with fixing things that it doesn’t allow things to just be as they are, much less to appreciate the clumsiness of nature.
Being unaware of your imperfections is a very beautiful part of childhood that is often lost people learn to judge themselves in the competitive capitalistic world.
Yet, despite all of that, the single most important thing which decides the quality of a person’s life is simply what they want to do. If you wish to start a business, chances are, nothing will make you happier than that.
Oscar Wilde once said,
“If you know exactly what you want to be in life, then you will become it. That is your punishment. Actually not knowing who you want to be,
Reinventing yourself every morning instead of being fixed, Being a Verb, instead of a Noun.
That is a real privilege.”
Writer from the heart – whether it is affiliate marketing or fiction – and a proud member of Shivansh’s team! Big fan of combat sports, reading non-fiction, and watching the best of everything from anime and movies to TV and video games.