Are you reading this while swinging from a hammock on a beautiful beach in Thailand?
Because unless you’re independently wealthy or living off your savings in a destination where your money can really stretch, you probably have a job.
And that job is something you want to keep, at least for now, while you’re building up your freelance writing business, affiliate marketing site or any other of the many online business opportunities out there that you’re trying to create.
That means you have limited time on your schedule. At least eight hours a day (and likely more) are already taken for between working and commuting.
Now, add on to that if you have a family, and friends, or a social life. Plus, oh yea, sleeping and eating, and suddenly the time you have to devote to growing a business is looking pretty slim.
For a lot of people, including many Location Rebel members, that’s the reality.
So, it’s not surprising that we get a lot of questions that ask how people can do both.
The good news is we have a few suggestions.
VIDEO: How to Make Time to Become a Freelancer
First Thing, You Have to Make Time
Yea, at the end of the day, that’s the main answer.
If you want to get out of your 9-5 and work for yourself you have to make time to do it.
That’s not to say you need to give up on sleep or ignore your family. But you have to get more strategic about it, and frankly you have to make it a priority.
Everyone has enough time. It’s just a matter of being honest about how important starting a freelance writing business is to you right this second.
You can probably find time in a few places.
One would be your tv time or the time you spend on social media or playing video games. If you can squeeze a bit of time out of each of these activities every day you can start building up hours of time to work each week.
What you should know is that the vast majority of people who build businesses are also doing it when working a full-time job. So, it certainly is possible, remember that.
One other thing to keep in mind, we’re framing this around starting a freelance writing business – but this can be applied to any online business. Blogging, affiliate marketing, e-commerce, freelance…it’s all the same.
Here’s How to Get Focused (and Stuff Done)
Your primary task here is going to be to get super focused on the task at hand. Typically, the less time you have to work on your business, the longer it is going to take to get it off the ground.
You need to make the most of that time.
Here’s how to do it.
1) Create a Schedule for Your New Lifestyle Business
First, schedule blocks of time where you can work. That might be half an hour or an hour a night four nights a week and one hour on the weekends. While that isn’t exactly a ton of time, it’s something you can work with — and it’s better than nothing.
What you want is to be as consistent and you can with this time. Don’t have this be your schedule one week and then the next devote zero hours.
Consistency is key, remember that.
This is part of building solid habits. Work on the foundation from the very start and you’re going to be in much better shape over the long run.
2) Be Ready to Work
Next, get focused, really focused on the tasks you want to accomplish in the time frame you have to get things done.
If you only have 45 minutes available every day, don’t spend the first 15 minutes on Twitter screwing around doing things that don’t matter. You need to be 100% focused the second you get your tush in the seat and get to work.
3) Have Your Tasks Ready
The easiest way to know exactly what you want to do when you sit down is to know what you have to accomplish.
Simple as that.
It’s usually a good rule of thumb to sit down before the week starts, on a Sunday night, and create a list of the big tasks you want to accomplish.
Don’t go nuts here. Your list shouldn’t be 17 things. What you want to usually focus on is 1-3 big things.
For people getting started that could look like this:
- Get a Freelance writer website set up
Sure that’s only one task, but there are a bunch of steps that go into it. You can spread those steps over the course of the time you have available.
Breaking down those tasks could look like this:
- Monday: Buy URL
- Tuesday: Get hosting set up
- Wednesday: Write home page copy
- Thursday: Write about page copy
- Friday: Write one blog post
- Saturday: Publish your site
Here you can see that the one big task, which feels a bit daunting knowing that it could take a few hours, can be done with focused work in your allotted time slots.
Ideally, you want to suit each of your tasks to the time you’ve got allotted.
For example, try not to pick something that’s going to take two hours if you only have 30 minutes. If you do try to work a bigger task into smaller time blocks, try to create a few stopping points that fit into that time frame.
4) Cut What Doesn’t Fit
The final point is you want to ruthlessly cut any tasks that aren’t on your list.
Also cut any tasks that aren’t directly related to getting clients, making money, or building your brand. Updating the colors on your website theme for an hour can wait. Using that time to send out 10 letters of introduction, which can lead to clients is something that should not wait.
As you start checking off those big tasks and you have free time you can use that focus on some of those back-burner tasks. But as you’re getting started you want to prioritize the minutes you have with tasks that are going to make the biggest impact.
That’s the reality of the situation.
You can absolutely build a business while working full time you just need to get laser-focused right from the start. These tips should help you get there.