How do I unite my daily work and small side business?

How do I unite my daily work image

Having an additional income stream is something to be so proud of. It gives you flexibility in your monthly income, another place to develop further skills and a direction to pivot if you need. It is also a great way to build strong work habits and boundaries that can positively affect your personal life as well. But it isn’t always easy to find a balance. Sometimes one job bleeds into the other or you run the risk of burning out if you do too much. The benefits of a side career should be carefully considered and all the various elements weighed as pros or cons. But it is achievable and if you plan smartly, self-advocate and pace yourself. It can really help build your career, your own self worth and your financial health. Read more to uncover some tips and pitfalls to avoid when you are balancing a full time job with an additional workload.

Research first.

Before you really get into having a side job it is essential to spend some time researching whatever industry you are looking to be part of. This is simple in some ways, but try to get a good grasp on what costs come with this new work, what do you need to pre-buy, how much can you expect to make in the first 6 months, the first year. This will help you pace yourself and slowly transition between your day job and this new business idea. Talk to people who do the work you are hoping to do and ask lots of questions. Find out what mistakes they made and how you can best plan to not do the same or in turn discover what made their ideas successful. No matter if it is selling crafts on Etsy, taking photographs at Weddings or rehabbing houses on the weekend, you can find someone who has done this before and learn a lot in the process.

Build a strong support network.

Working two jobs is not easy and a support group of close friends and family can help keep you on track. Self advocate if you need some extra help with the kids, support walking the dog or just being there for you when you need to talk, whatever it may be, know they are there for you. Also make sure your support network understands why you have taken on additional work. Whether you’re working towards buying a home or starting to build the capacity to transfer careers. Make sure to let them know your intentions and they can fully help you realize your long term plan. You’d be surprised how important it is to keep your network engaged in your goals, they are your biggest supporters and can help you keep going when things feel tough.

Respect the boundaries of your existing work and side business.

It is critical to have additional work that fits within the time constraints of your primary job. They cannot overlap, so it is important to identify the time you can dedicate to side work. Do you have mornings available, weekends, or just one night a week? Find something that works for you. It is so critical for the stability of your primary job to not have it overlap with your side business. Having set hours is an easy way to have clear boundaries for all the work in your life as well as your time away. Let the people in your life know what your schedule is, so they can assimilate as well. If you need a certain window of time every morning for your side business, let your family know and they can help you, but also know when you’re working and when is the time they can have your full attention.

Have time management.

Your time is valuable, so be thoughtful and intentional with all of it. Being organized with what you do is the key to being successful, so always plan for your day, month and year. Really plot out everything you have to do whether it’s work or time for yourself. See where you have windows to carve out time for your side work to get done in. Maybe you get an hour lunch break everyday and could use this time daily for notes or brainstorming new ideas. If you are best when you wake up early, utilize the quiet time to focus on your additional work or in turn, listen to your body if nighttime is where you feel the most energized to get work done. When you have a clear plan, you will ultimately be carving out time to recharge as well. Good sleep is essential to being able to do anything, so again listen to your body, plan for this non negotiable time and ensure you are getting enough.

Practice self care.

This is a critical step that most people forget when you're busy with work and daily life. You need to find time to recharge and have the energy and clarity to move forward. Find what works best for you and make a calendar appointment for what you need to do. Going for a run or hike outdoors takes very little time, gear or money to practice and is so good for your body and mind. Maybe practicing meditation at home is what works for you to be your best. Attending local yoga or gym classes can be a mix of time away and a social outlet for taking time away from work. This small break from obligations will make you feel better and will ultimately make you even more effective in everything you do.

Be grateful.

With the current climate feeling uncertain, it is smart to always have a back up income stream. Congratulate yourself for maintaining a full time job and finding the time for additional work. You never know when a situation may change and having choices in where you can pivot is key. Having various working skills also makes you adaptable and able to shift gears if you need to adjust your lifestyle for any reason. Channel gratitude for the luxuries your extra income is affording whether it’s a cushion in your savings or buying things you have been wanting and giving you the gift of freedom and choices in your life. Really own how lucky you are to be in this situation.

Remember why you have taken on additional work. Is it what you love or something special you're saving for. Life can get busy, change course or shift overnight and it’s always important to assess why you are taking on the additional work. Check in with yourself, your support group and your family. Be patient and follow through. It is good to have goals that you can reach and build in moments for reflection along the way. This will keep you from forgetting the benefit of this side work in the first place. Always remember to find your own balance with all work and the time away to recharge. You are the key to making your life thrive, so don't lose track of your health in the process and enjoy the fruits of your effort along the way.