How To Make Time For Your Side Hustle As A 9-5 Employee
Many individuals have brilliant ideas for new ventures, and you might be one of them. However, only a small fraction of people actually take the leap and start their own businesses.
So, why does this transition from idea to action often prove challenging? The answer lies in execution, especially in the beginning stages. Starting a new venture and nurturing it to its full potential can be difficult at the start. However, with the right approach, you can position yourself for success.
Here are some time-management strategies I employ while working a 9-to-5 job to effectively handle my responsibilities and pursue my side hustle:
- Delegate Some Tasks
Entrepreneurs often receive inquiries about how they manage to do it all. The truth is, they don’t. While some tasks require personal attention, many others can be automated or outsourced. For instance, utilizing digital marketing tools to manage social media significantly reduces workload. However, it’s important to consider the cost versus the time saved. If the cost of outsourcing is reasonable compared to the time you save, don’t hesitate to seek assistance when feeling overwhelmed.
- Consolidate Tasks
When starting out, balancing your new venture with existing commitments at home and work can be challenging. The temptation to multitask might be strong, such as writing emails while doing household chores. However, in my experience, multitasking often leads to time loss that outweighs any time gained. Instead, try grouping similar tasks together, both personal and professional, to optimize your efficiency. For example, preparing a large meal and dividing it for the week can save considerable time compared to ordering takeout. You can also utilize your commute or daily walks to listen to podcasts or study your area of expertise.
- Implement the ‘Pomodoro’ Technique
Many people make the mistake of working on their own projects without taking breaks, resulting in long hours without rest. Working hard doesn’t necessarily equate to working smart. The Pomodoro technique emphasizes the importance of giving yourself breaks for optimal productivity. With this technique, you work for 25 minutes using a Pomodoro app, then take a short break (5 minutes) or a longer break (15 minutes). This approach helps you stay focused while also allowing your mind to rest, preventing burnout.
- Schedule Dedicated Time
Allocate specific time each day to focus on your side business, treating it like an unchangeable appointment. Make the most of this time by prioritizing tasks effectively. Consider alternative ways to utilize this time instead of simply going through emails. Regardless of how much time you have, your ability to prioritize tasks will determine your success. To keep track of all the activities related to my side business, I find it helpful to use time management apps like Asana, which I separate from my personal and professional to-do lists.
- Join a Mastermind Group
I participate in a monthly meeting with three other women who also own their businesses. We gather to discuss our progress toward our goals and provide mutual encouragement. Being accountable to others can provide the extra motivation needed to stay on track. When you’re solely responsible for evaluating your progress, it can be challenging to stay motivated. A little motivation and support from a mastermind group can go a long way in maintaining your drive.