Hustle -V- Day Job

Today, I want to talk about a topic that many of us can relate to: balancing the demands of our new business ventures while still working in our day jobs and keeping families happy too.

When I started out, I had two small children under 3 and while my husband at the time was great with the kids, he was not great with any domestic jobs (except cooking and putting washing in, he loved that for some reason!). So I had to get a cleaner but that was ok.

When I became more successful, I did still suffer enormous guilt (entirely self inflicted) and I do remember feeling very torn between being a mum and striving for success.  Even though that success was what was paying for the family to survive financially.

When I was with the kids, weekends particularly, I felt I should be working, and when I was working and away from home at conferences and masterminds etc., I felt like I should be home, witnessing all those 'firsts' that you never get to see again.  

Luckily, in my quest to become a highly effective person, I stumbled on the book of the same name and implementing the 7 Habits totally changed my life so I do recommend it highly.  It helped me zone my diary (more on that below) so that I could focus on what I should be doing and make sure the balance of time was evened out.

As exciting as it is to pursue our entrepreneurial dreams, it can also be incredibly challenging to juggle the responsibilities of work and home. But fear not, because I'm here to share some practical tips and strategies for finding balance and making the most of your time. So grab a coffee and let's dive in!

Embracing the Journey: It's Okay to Start Small

First things first, let's take a moment to acknowledge that building a new business while working a day job is no small feat. It becomes a bit of a mountain to climb if you add in family time and responsibilities.

It's a journey filled with ups and downs, victories and setbacks. But remember, every step you take, no matter how small, is bringing you closer to your ultimate goals of financial freedom and autonomy from the 9-5. So embrace the journey, and don't be too hard on yourself if things don't go exactly as planned right out of the gate.

Setting Realistic Expectations: Define Your Priorities

One of the keys to finding balance is setting realistic expectations for yourself and your new business. Take some time to define your priorities and identify what matters most to you. Is it growing your business as quickly as possible, or is it doing it more slowly while maintaining a healthy work-life balance? By clarifying your goals and priorities, you can make more informed decisions about how to allocate your time and resources.  There is no wrong way to do this, it has to work for you.

Maximizing Your Time: Making the Most of Every Moment

With a busy schedule that includes both your day job and your new business, it's essential to maximize your time and make the most of every moment. Here are some practical tips:

  • Time Management Techniques: Consider using time-blocking or the Pomodoro Technique to structure your day and maximize productivity.  I do recall getting more done in the half an hour before picking up the kids from school (when I did that) than any other hour since 9am.
  • Utilize Travel Downtime: If you commute to work or travel frequently, use this downtime for strategic planning, brainstorming new ideas, or catching up on industry news.  Although I hated commuting, having 3 hours a day in total to focus on my business, making me more able to focus on my day job when I was there.
  • Accountability Partners: Consider hiring a coach or accountability partner to help keep you on track and motivated on your entrepreneurial journey.  Singlehandedly, hiring a coach (even though I didn't feel I could really afford it) was the best thing I ever did.
  • Communication with Your Partner: Talk to your partner about your business goals and how they can support you in achieving them. Delegate where possible and affordable. For example, use grocery delivery services rather than spending hours in Tesco (unless you enjoy that!). Carve out dedicated time to work on your business together, and involve them in decision-making processes when appropriate.  But be aware, your partner might want all of your time, when not at work or with the kids, so you might have to really sell the benefits here!  

Leveraging Your Resources: Seeking Support and Outsourcing

As a solopreneur juggling multiple responsibilities, it's crucial to leverage your resources and seek support wherever possible. Here are some practical tips:

  • Outsourcing Tasks: Identify tasks that are outside your skillset or time-consuming and consider outsourcing them to domestic help, delivery services, freelancers or contractors.  Don't think "I must do..." think 'Who could do...?'
  • Family Support: Involve your family in your entrepreneurial journey and enlist their help in tasks like brainstorming ideas, providing feedback, or even assisting with domestic and administrative tasks.

Finding Your Rhythm: Establishing a Sustainable Routine

Finally, finding balance is all about establishing a sustainable routine that works for you. Here are some practical tips:

  • Self-Care: Prioritize self-care and downtime to recharge your batteries and prevent burnout. This could include activities like exercise, meditation, or spending guilt-free time with loved ones.
  • Flexible Work Hours: If possible, negotiate flexible work hours with your employer to accommodate your entrepreneurial pursuits and family responsibilities.
  • Batching Tasks: Group similar tasks together and tackle them in batches to maximize efficiency and minimize context-switching.  Batching is brilliant - today I'm writing all three blog posts for the week, which will then be shared over social media for the week and turn into audio for my Saturday podcast.

Embracing the Journey: Celebrating Your Wins Along the Way

As you navigate the challenges of balancing your new business with your day job and family, don't forget to celebrate your wins along the way.

Whether it's landing your first client, hitting a revenue milestone, or simply making progress towards your goals, take the time to acknowledge and celebrate your achievements.  Ideally with the people you love, who have helped you along the way.

After all, every step forward is a step in the right direction towards building the business of your dreams.  One that delivers the lifestyle for your family and any other dreams you hold dear.  

Otherwise there is no point, is there?


Tags

Entrepreneurship, female entrepreneur, hustle, side hustle, start a business, starting a business, time managment, work life balance


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