There are a lot of people out there who have an excellent idea for starting their own business. You may even be one of them. Yet a significantly lower number of individuals actually continue to start out their own business.
So what’s keeping you from going from column A to column B? Execution — especially when just starting out. In the beginning, it is the hardest to cultivate a replacement hobby that would become something more. You can set yourself up for success though if you are know-how.
I have a full-time job, and that I wrote my first book, Listful Thinking: Using Lists to be More Productive, Highly Successful and fewer Stressed and maintain the blog ListProducer.com at the same time.
While working 9 to 5 I use some time-management techniques to do this.
So often people inquire from me “how does one roll in the hay all?” The truth is, I don’t.
I still need to maintain most things alone, but I automate almost everything else.
For example, I exploit Co-Schedule to manage all my social media, which takes tons of the load off my shoulders. Of course, outsourcing often costs money but when you work out the cost vs. time saved you might find you’d be paying yourself less than minimum wage to do a task. If you’re feeling bogged down it’s OK to look for help.
2. Lump tasks together.
When you’re first starting out, figuring out how to balance work and home life with your new hobby can be tricky. It might be tempting to try and multitask (e.g. writing emails while you pack the dishwasher.) However, I find multitasking tends to waste more time than it saves. Instead, work together – both business and daily responsibilities.
For instance, a fast thanks to saving an enormous chunk of your time is to cook one big meal and spread it out throughout the week. Heating up some lasagna is even quicker than ordering remove.
You can also cash in of your commute to read abreast of your field or hear relevant podcasts while you walk the dog. Not every task has got to be done sitting at a desk.
3. Use the ‘Pomodoro’ technique.
When you’re performing on your own projects, many of us fall under the trap of pushing themselves too hard — forcing themselves to figure unreasonable hours with no breaks. However, just because you are working hard, doesn’t mean you are working smart.
The idea behind the Pomodoro technique is that it’s important to give yourself breaks. Our minds can’t focus for very long without them. The Pomodoro app gives you 25 minutes to work on a certain task, and then you can take a short break (5 minutes) or a long break (15 minutes.) This keeps you on task but allows you to refresh your mind so you don’t feel overwhelmed.
4. Make appointments.
Set aside sometime each day to work at your side gig. Treat this time like a doctor’s appointment; you just can’t cancel it. When you’re working attempt to make the foremost of some time. Instead of just reading through emails, think: Can time be spent anywhere better? Even if you had all the time in the world, how you prioritize makes all the difference. I like to use the time management tool Asana to stay track of all of the tasks I want to be doing when it involves my side gig. This is a breakaway where I keep my personal and work to-dos.
5. Join a mastermind group.
Every month I meet with three other women who also are running their own business. We meet to share your goals, discuss your progress and offer encouragement. Being accountable to somebody else can offer you that extra push you would like to stay going. It’s difficult to get motivated when the only person who knows if you didn’t do something is you. Plus a little encouragement goes a long way.