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How to Make Time to Grow Your Side Business

Got a great idea you want to turn into a side business? Along with a full-time job and a busy schedule, you may be thinking you simply don’t have the time. Falling into that trap will most likely stop you – and many others like you – from ever transforming your new hobby or idea into a business. However, if you make a few small adjustments to your day-to-day, you’ll probably find you have plenty of time after all. Read on and start your journey to a successful side hustle!

You Don’t Have to Do Everything Yourself

airdone/Shutterstock: Outsourcing can save time

Okay, so you’ll have to manage a lot of things yourself, but don’t fool yourself into thinking you have to handle every last detail personally. Outsourcing the more menial duties that don’t need your direct input – such as social media management – will free up a huge amount of your time.

There are many online platforms, such as CoSchedule that can help you keep track of everything while automating many processes. Most of the premium services cost a little money each month, but the majority offer a free trial so you can see if it will work for your needs. Once you see how much time this will save you, you’ll see it’s worth the small cost.

Group Tasks Together Instead of Multitasking

Multitasking might seem like the best course of action when you need to get lots done in a short time. However, more often than not, you end up wasting time because you aren’t focusing on any one task properly. That doesn’t mean you can’t find a work/homelife balance though! Rather than juggling multiple tasks, try grouping your business and everyday tasks so you can tackle similar tasks at the same time.

Find yourself spending too much time cooking each day? You don’t have to switch to take out or frozen meals to save your time. Instead, set aside an hour or two on the weekend to meal prep. No, that doesn’t mean you’ll be eating the same spaghetti bolognese for the coming week – unless you want to of course! Start by preparing vegetables, pasta, rice, meat, and any other ingredients you plan to use for the week. Store in the fridge or freezer until you need them, and you can start cooking dinner straight away – no prep needed! If you have a bit of extra time, you can cook a big batch meal or two for those days when you really don’t feel like cooking. Quick and easy dinner and no need to wait for delivery! Take a look at these recipes if you need a touch of inspiration.

Working Hard Doesn’t Always Mean Working Smart

Don’t feel you have to work crazy hours just because you’re working on your own project. It’s okay to take breaks – in fact, if you keep skipping your breaks you’ll soon find yourself struggling to focus. Taking a short break every 30 minutes or so gives you a chance to refresh, and will help you stay on task for longer.

fizkes/Shutterstock: Take a break

Set a Side Hustle Schedule

Give yourself a set time to work on your side project every day, and make sure you stick to it. This might be your project, but that doesn’t mean you can cancel on yourself! Treat this time like a daily appointment that you have to keep, and make sure you utilize the time well. Remember, the way you prioritize your tasks will affect how you spend your time, so don’t waste it scrolling your email inbox.

Try using an online time management tool like Trello or Asana to organize your tasks. The benefit of using one of these tools over a physical board is the ability to include all the information you need such as a checklist covering what the task entails, and any links, images, or files you’ll require. You can even set a due date for each task, so you can see what needs attention at a glance. It’s well worth the little time it takes to initially set up a project board, and you may even find yourself using it for your personal and work to-dos.

Having a fully customizable board tailored to your specific requirements serves as a visual reminder of what you need to do, what is in progress, and what is done, and is a great way to keep on track and make the most of your time. Both Trello and Asana are free to use at the basic level, although the premium version of Trello includes the Butler feature. This handy addition enables you to automate processes by creating a “Rule” or a “Button”. The Butler also tracks which actions you perform regularly and uses this information to suggest additional “Rules” and “Buttons”. Adding automation to your board, either manually or through the Butler suggestions, saves you a heap of time in the long run, and keeps your board tidy and up-to-date – and you don’t have to lift a finger!

Share Ideas With Like-Minded People

It’s easy for motivation to slip if you feel like you’re in this alone, especially if you fall into a habit of thinking you’re the only one who’ll know if you skip your “side gig appointment” today. Once your motivation starts to drop, so does your rate of progress, and before you know it, your side hustle has ground to a halt.

Getting started was hard enough in the first place, so you can probably imagine how difficult it would be to rebuild your momentum from scratch. However, there’s a simple thing you can do to avoid this thought pattern, and it will benefit you and your project in more ways than one. It’s time to find your side gig tribe!

George Rudy/Shutterstock: Sharing ideas

You might be lucky enough to already know people who are working on their side gigs, but if not, it’s time to do a little networking. Their projects don’t have to be all that similar to yours either, so don’t get too caught up on this. The important thing is the fact they’re running a side business, just like you!

Once you’ve connected with two or three other side hustlers, arrange a monthly meeting where you can discuss ideas, concerns, goals, and progress, and above all, encourage each other! You’re far less likely to skip an “appointment” when you know your tribe also wants you to succeed. Plus, reporting back to the group and celebrating achievements together will boost your motivation level. An increase in motivation means an increase in progress and momentum – you’ll soon be hitting your goals left, right, and center.

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