As you may already know, I’m relaunching part of my business this month. Very unexpectedly, this past Mercury retrograde brought up an opportunity for me to rediscover my passion for working with entrepreneurs who are just getting started on their journeys, and so I thought I’d follow my inspiration and write some new articles specifically for aspiring business owners who are wanting to quit their 9–5 a.s.a.p.
Today, I wanted to share 5 of my favourite ways to free up time and space to work on your business while still working full time in corporate.
1. Work Part Time
First of all, and I know this may sound obvious … if you haven’t yet explored the option of working part time while taking your first steps in your business, I highly recommend doing so. Reducing your work hours at your current job (or finding a more suitable bridge job) is one of the quickest ways to free up larger chunks of time that simply won’t be available to you while you’re still working full time.
If you’re a particularly courageous soul and if you have a substantial amount of savings, you may even want to consider leaping straight into full-time entrepreneurship. That’s how I did it 8 years ago after deciding that finding a part-time job first just wasn’t the right solution for me. And yes, it worked! However, I do want to be clear here: Only do this if you know what you’re doing! Ideally, I recommend having at least 1–2 years’ worth of living expenses in your savings account if you choose to take this route. (Or: Have another back-up plan that you know will work for you.)
2. Declutter Your Schedule
Next, let’s take a look at your daily routines and see how you can free up time and space in your current schedule. This doesn’t necessarily mean having to let go of anything that’s genuinely important to you such as your favourite workout routine or spending time with your family. (Neglecting self-care is definitely not the way to go.)
However, if you’re completely honest with yourself, you’ll probably find some things in your schedule that are really just eating up your time and not contributing to your well-being in any significant way. A good example would be spending a whole lot of time on Facebook or Netflix out of habit (and not because you’re consciously choosing to do so).
As a rule of thumb: Keep the things that truly light you up and fill you with energy. Ditch the things that drain you and pull you down.
3. Set Boundaries
Another great way to free up time is to learn to say “no” more often.
Are you constantly saying yes to working longer hours even though you really don’t want to? Are you taking on tasks that aren’t really your responsibility just because you don’t want to let your boss and co-workers down? Are you drowning in family obligations that draining your soul because you have a hard time saying no to those you love? If so, it’s time to set healthy boundaries and claim the space you need to work on your dream.
This may take some courage, but it’s a great habit to get into no matter where you are in your journey right now. (Because yes, even if you weren’t growing a business—there’s nothing shameful about needing time for yourself. We all need time to rest, too!)
4. Simplify the Tasks in Your Business
Next, it’s time to have a look at your daily activities within your business. If you’re like most people, chances are that there are a lot of things you’re doing (or thinking about doing) in your business right now that aren’t actually creating results in any significant way. Also, most of us tend to make things much more complicated than they need to be.
How can you simplify the tasks in your business to create more space to breathe and flow? What can you let go of? What are your true #1 priorities right now?
For instance, many people think that in order to get their business up and running, they need a website a.s.a.p. While this is true in some cases, there are lots of ways to build a business that don’t require you to have a website right away. For example, if you want to start a coaching business, it will often make a lot more sense to focus on relationship building and sales first, and then putting the more complex pieces into place.
(In fact, I know quite a few coaches who took their business to 6 figures before they had a website or a list.)
Finally—and again, this is a great habit to cultivate from the start—don’t be shy to ask for support when you need it. This can be as simple as asking your spouse to help you with the dishes just a little more often (yes, even that can make a big difference), or it can be bigger things like hiring someone to build your website for you, delegating some of your weekly tasks to your VA, or getting someone to clean your house for you once a week.
That’s it for today! Do you have any favourite time hacks that have helped you create more ease and breathing space in your business in the past? Let me know in the comments! :)