Working in a full time job and starting and/or running your own business is HARD! It’s hard to find time. To look after yourself. Connect with your loves. Grow your business. I get it!
For years I juggled full time work with blogging. My normal 9 til 5 hours were sandwiched between pre 9AM blog post writing and post 5PM social media management – in amongst exercise, socialising and the much needed ‘time out’ this little introvert needs. I dreamt of the day I’d lead a different lifestyle. One were I could work from the comfort of my home, or in cafes. One where I could make money doing what I love. One where I could lie in bed and watch Netflix when my period demanded that I rest.
I grew more and more frustrated with each passing day, because each passing day acted as a reminder that I wasn’t yet where I wanted to be.
And I wanted to be there now. No. I wanted to be there yesterday.
I remember the growing resentment I felt towards my day job (HA! The one that paid the bills! It seems so odd now that I would resent it).
The wavering motivation I felt towards my blogs which, despite so much effort, felt like they were providing very little return (financially AND emotionally).
The daily, ‘what the f!ck am I doing’ wonderings.
But, 5 years on, I see it was all worth it.
The waiting, which tested my determination and desire.
The ‘failures’, which taught me resilience and new ways of thinking creatively.
The loneliness and feelings of being misunderstood, which resulted in me being proactive in seeking out and meeting the most supportive biz babes.
The endless writing, which helped me refine my craft.
The website tinkering, which helped me grow more technologically competent.
The confusion, which helped me get clear on my vision and ideal client.
The consistency, which helped build my courage and determination.
I could go on and on …
If you’re in the beginning years of your biz building journey I want you to know this … all the frustration/pain/challenges/tears/tantrums are worth it.
Showing up, every day (making sure that you allow time to disconnect and rest too of course!) will provide you with the most delicious rewards, beyond your imagination.
Though the path may be a little steeper than you anticipated, and though the journey may take you to a different destination than you originally planned, I promise that, if you lead with your heart, you’ll end up at the right place.
In the meantime though, here’s some things that I found to be SUPER HELPFUL at the beginning of my journey when I was juggling 9 til 5 work with my passion project:
Find a tribe!
Oh my goodness, I would not be where I am today (I would have thrown in the towel a long time ago!) if it weren’t for my babes in biz. How did I meet them you ask? I put out a shout out in a Facebook group. That’s it – easy peasy. EVERY new babe in biz is seeking connection and support. I mean, you know yourself how isolating it can feel, right?! Be bold and put yourself out there. You never know what magic might unfold.
Get a Mentor or a Coach!
It can seem like a big investment but it’s OH SO WORTH IT! I’ve had 3 coaches in my time and each of them were worth every penny. They inspired me. Supported me. Helped me dream big and (perhaps most importantly) DO. They rationalised my fears and helped me see my full and beautiful potential. In all honesty, I don’t know where I’d be without them today. There’s a tonne of awesome Mentors and Coaches out there – do your research and find one that resonates with you! You can check out my business coaching here.
Take baby steps, every day.
Be consistent in showing up, even if that means just posting to social media once a day. Keep yourself ‘in the zone’ and keep creating. Remember: from little things, big things grow.
Track your progress.
It may not feel like it, but I assure you that every day/week/month/year, your business isgrowing. I encourage you to set yourself a time frame and some ‘markers’ upon which to track your progress. If you’re growing your business slowly, then choose a longer time frame (say, 6 months). Decide which ‘markers’ you want to use – social media growth, growth in newsletter subscribers, number of blog posts written, number of blog posts written/interviews done for other sites, etc. Choose what resonates with you.
Stop comparing yourself to others.
Because, let’s be real, you probably are. It’s pointless and does nothing but tear us down and make us feel sh!t. And the funny thing is this – there’s probably someone out there doing exactly the same with you! You being proactive in your own authentic journey is incredible and inspiring. Don’t dismiss that by comparing yourself to others and telling yourself that you’re not good enough.
Last but not least, take time out to care for yourself.
It can be easy to go-go-go when you’re passionate about something but sadly, go-go-go isn’t sustainable. It will lead to burnout and burnout is the killer of all creativity (an ESSENTIAL part of business). Treat yourself, AND YOUR BUSINESS, to down time. Your future will thank you for it.