If you work full-time you might be wondering how to balance your job with a side hustle. Maybe a side business has been on your mind lately, but you are afraid to take that first step because you think you won’t be able to balance them well in addition to your other responsibilities.
I was in that spot not that long ago. I started this blog six months ago and added a YouTube channel about two months ago. So all those struggles are very fresh in my mind, which is why I want to make this post right now – when I’m still at the beginning stages of my journey.
In order to find the balance between your full-time job and a side hustle, you really have to think about it in three areas: mindset, planning, and execution.
This is where it all starts. You really have to start with the right mindset to set the right expectations for yourself.
Define Your Why
First sit down and think why you want to start a side hustle in the first place? What is your vision? What do you want to accomplish? Knowing your reasons and spending some time defining your why will help keep you motivated when things get difficult. And they will get difficult! Especially during those beginning stages where everything is new. Which brings me to my next point.
You Are a Beginner
When you start a new side hustle, you are a beginner. There will be a lot of things you will have to learn. So give yourself plenty of time to master those new skills and give yourself some grace when you take longer than expected to learn something.
Let me give you an example of that. When I first started watching YouTube videos, I thought to myself – Wow! This person makes awesome videos and it takes them 15 minutes to film. Or, wow, that is a great blog post. I would love to have my own to express my voice.
Then I started doing some research and heard other bloggers and YouTubers say how long it takes them to actually produce content and I was shocked. And even then I was thinking, there is no way someone spends 4 to 6 hours working on a YouTube video. They might not have a good system. I’m sure that will not be the case for me. Well, they were not wrong. But I sure was! Because it sure takes a lot of time for create quality content for both blogs and YouTube channels.
So just because something looks easy and effortless when you look at the other people’ side hustle, nothing if further from the truth. It all takes a lot of work. So don’t go into it thinking that easy. You have to go into it with realistic expectations.
You Will NOT be Successful Overnight
And what goes right along with the setting realistic expectations is the realization that success is not overnight. If you know of anyone who had a side business that was successful overnight, that was the exception to the rule. I have listened to many podcasts and read books and articles about successful entrepeneur women. And they will be the first ones to tell you that it took them years to get to where they are today. So don’t expect to be any different.
Once you have the right mindset, it’s time to get to the second phase, which is planning. If you saw any of my previous videos, you know that I love planning. And I will like a video here on how I plan my days to stay productive.
When Will You Work on Your Side Hustle?
First, you have to figure out when you will work on your side business. Because if you have a full-time job, your time will be limited. And if you are a mom as well, it will be even more crucial for you to dedicate a specific time of the day/week for working on your side job.
So take a good look at your days and decide when you will be working. Will you wake up earlier in the morning? Will you stay up later? Or perhaps you work during lunch or commute to work? If you are concerned with how to find more time in your day, I made another blog post about that topic.
The idea is to identify those gaps that you will be able to dedicate to your side business.
List Your Tasks
Once you know when you will be working on your side hustle and how much time per week you have, you can move on to your next planning step.
And that is to define some specific tasks that you will have to perform. For example, if you want to start blogging on the side, your tasks will include: writing the blog, finding images, creating a pin image for Pinterest, promoting your blog post, and posting on social media. Like I said when we discussed the mindset phase, there is a lot of things that go into the side hustle.
Match Tasks to Time Gaps
Once you have a clear plan on what you want to do and when you have time for it, it’s time to plan specific types of activities for specific types of days. So if your side hustle is making YouTube videos, maybe weekends are when you will record your videos. And Tuesday and Wednesday early mornings will be dedicated to editing. And so on. You simply want to make sure that what you have planned to accomplish that week will actually fit into the amount of time you have dedicated to your side hustle. Plus having a plan on what, how, and when will definitely help you be more productive.
Finally, the last phase is execution. This is the fun part but also the part that requires a lot of work and dedication to make your dreams a reality.
Follow Your Plan
So let’s get to work. The first step is to follow the plan that you have developed in the previous phase. Remember, if you are just starting you will encounter a lot of bumps in the road.
Evaluate Your Plan
Which brings me to the second point. Make sure that after a couple of weeks, or maybe a month, you take some time to evaluate your plan and progress. Check in with yourself to see what has worked for you during those past weeks. Where there any activities that took you much longer than you have anticipated? Did you find yourself struggling to work on an activity during a particular time of day? This is the time when you need to start making some changes to your plan.
Your plan is there to work for you. So if something does not work, you need to adjust it.
Ask for Help
You also need to remember to ask for help! Talk to your spouse before you start this journey so they can be offer you support. Both mentally and with doing things that maybe were your responsibility. Maybe it’s as simple as going to a coffee shop for a couple of hours on Sunday mornings to work on your side hustle while your husband stays home and plays with the kids.
And finally, be sure you keep learning new skills. You want to work smarter and not harder. So keep looking for content that will help you do just that. There is so much free information out there; YouTube, podcasts, blog posts, or books. Utilize them to your best advantage. I cannot tell you how much I have learned over the past six months from other entrepreneurs. And yes, majority of it was free!
And if you find something that costs money, don’t be afraid to make that investment in yourself. Do your research, and make sure that the content that you will receive is worth the price, and if it is, go for it. This will help you run your side hustle more efficiently and effectively.
Do you have a side hustle that you want to start? What is stopping you? And for those of you who already have a side business, tell me what is your biggest struggle when it comes to balancing it all your other responsibilities?