By Shauna Sanders
Transitioning your part time gig into your new career while still working full time is kind of like training for a marathon. It might take a little while to get there, you’re going to have to train new muscles but crossing that finish line is going to make you feel richer than crème brûlée.
Here are a few manageable ideas to propel you — and your side gig — forward.
1. Map out your plan.
Write it down, make it happen. This is the key to accomplishing anything you want. No, really! This might be THE most important (practical) step. That’s why it’s #1 on my list and the longest section.
We are complicated creatures with busy brains that have been said to compute more than 70,000 thoughts per day. That’s almost 1 thought per second. Point being, we have a lot of ideas and the best way to organize them is to write them down.
Before you go and write down 200 things to do to make your business better and possibly feel overwhelmed by your new long list, let’s do a bit of reverse engineering.
Where do you want your side business to be in a year, or in five years? What goals and action steps will get you there? From here, work backwards with what actions steps you will need to take.
For example, when I first started my life coaching business, my first annual goal was to have a part-time business up and running, which for me meant:
get certified, have a website and at least a couple of clients.
I took each goal, broke them down into actionable steps and away I went. It’s helpful to also have daily, weekly and monthly goals that are reaching TOWARDS your big goal.
2. What’s your ‘Why’?
If you haven’t seen Simon Sinek’s TED Talk “Start With Why” take eighteen minutes and get ready to be beyond inspired. WHY are you growing your side business? Are you looking for freedom with your schedule to spend more time with your family? Does your desire to share you knowledge of, say essential oils, run so deep you want to shout and share it from the mountaintops? What’s YOUR why? This important concept should be the basis for, well, really anything you do.
When digging into your “why”, it’s equally important to believe you can do it.
Your mind believes what you tell it to, so tell it something good.
Our brains can’t differentiate between reality and what we tell it. So even if you don’t actually believe what you’re saying (yet), keep saying it and your brain will catch up.
“My side business will be up and running and producing money within a year” or even better, put it in the present tense. “I am an expert in my field and people want to learn from me”.
4. Manage your time.
Now that you have your mapped out plan and your list of prioritized goals, it’s time to get to work. Working full time still leaves room for other things. How you choose to fill your time is about to get measured. As Peter Drucker wisely put it, “what gets measured, gets managed”.
Take the next week or two and write down everything you do and the time it takes to do it. You can sum up showering, dressing, packing lunch etc. as “getting ready for work” and note how long it takes you. Be sure to notate your down time too, watching TV or surfing the Internet. You’ll start to see slivers of time that you can dedicate more to your side gig. If you’re a night owl, add an extra 30 minutes at the end of the day for your business. Morning person? Set your alarm 30 minutes earlier.
And if you have a good chunk of time, one of my favorite get-down-to-bigness tools is the Pomodoro timer. This time management technique is simply 25 minutes of concentration on your work, then a 5-minute break, repeat this cycle 4 times and then take a 10-minute break.
I’ve achieved what would normally take me all day, in about 3 hours with this method.
5. Outsource Tasks.
You are even busier than most people; get some help where you can.
In your personal life one of the easiest ways to add time to your schedule is to hire a housekeeper. And for personal things un-cleaning related, check out Task Rabbit or Amazon Home Services.
For your professional side, hire out the tasks that are taking up your time, and, or, the ones you don’t actually enjoy. Virtual assistants (VA’s) are a great way to get things done while you are busy creating content or focusing on your next big goal. And, if you haven’t heard of Fiverr, you can basically hire out people to do almost anything starting at $5.
6. Surround yourself with like-minded people.
Telling your spouse about your business isn’t the same as having entrepreneurial friendships and sharing ideas and bouncing things off of each other. Facebook groups are just one way to be around like-minded people, find your people and what works for you.
7. Create accountability.
When you tell people you are going to launch your new book in October, that puts more pressure (aka accountability) on yourself than just writing it down on your goals list. Two of the best ways to achieve this are to hire a coach or join a mastermind.
8. Be kind to yourself.
Focus on what you have accomplished, rather than what you haven’t finished yet.
9. Don’t wait till you’re 100% ready.
We tend to want to wait until everything is perfectly set up and in order before sharing what we do. Stop waiting! Start telling people about it now… like, today.
Shauna Sanders, known as the Joy Catalyst , is a life coach helping people who are sick and tired of the reality they are living, step up to the life that they truly deserve. She is a founding member of The Curiosity Library. You can learn more about Shauna and her work HERE.