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There are lots of people who have a great idea for starting their own business. You can even be one of them. However, significantly fewer people start their own businesses.
So what is stopping you from moving from column A to column B? Execution – especially at the start. At first, it is most difficult to cultivate a new hobby that could turn into something more. You can prepare for success, if you know it.
I have a full time job and I wrote my first book, Careful thinking: using lists to be more productive, very efficient and less targetedd and maintain the ListProducer.com blog at the same time.
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Here are some of my time management tips that I use to do it all while working a 9 to 5.
So often people ask me “how do you do it all?” The truth is, no.
I still have to maintain most things by myself, but I automate almost everything else.
For example, I use Co-Schedule to manage all of my social media, which relieves me a lot of shoulders. Of course, outsourcing often costs money, but when you calculate the cost / time savings, you may find that you are paying less than the minimum wage to complete a task. If you feel bogged down, you can ask for help.
2. Lump tasks together.
When you’re new to balancing work and family life with your new hobby, it can be tricky. It can be tempting to try to multitask (for example, writing emails while you are packing the dishwasher). However, I find that multitasking tends to waste more time than it saves. Instead, group the tasks together – work and daily tasks.
For example, a quick way to save a huge chunk of time is to cook a big meal and spread it out throughout the week. Heating lasagna is even faster than ordering takeout.
You can also take advantage of your trip to read on your property or listen to relevant podcasts while you walk the dog. Not all tasks should be performed seated at a desk.
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3. Use the “Pomodoro” technique.
When working on your own projects, many people fall into the trap of pushing themselves too hard – forcing themselves to work unreasonable hours without interruption. However, just because you work hard doesn’t mean you work smart.
The idea behind the Pomodoro technique is that it is important to take breaks. Our mind cannot focus very long without them. The Pomodoro app gives you 25 minutes to work on a certain task, then you can take a short break (5 minutes) or a long break (15 minutes). This allows you to keep the task, but allows you to refresh your mind so that you don’t feel overwhelmed.
4. Make an appointment.
Set aside time each day to work on your next concert. Treat this time like a doctor’s appointment; you just can’t cancel it. When you work, try to make the most of your time. Rather than just reading emails, think: could time be better used elsewhere? Even if you had all the time in the world, the way you prioritize made all the difference. I like to use the Asana time management tool to keep track of all the tasks I need to do in regards to my concert. This is separate from where I keep my personal and professional tasks.
5. Join a think tank.
Each month I meet three other women who also run their own businesses. We meet to share our goals, discuss our progress and offer encouragement. Being accountable to someone else can give you the extra push you need to keep going. It’s hard to motivate yourself when the only person who knows if you haven’t done anything is you. In addition, a little encouragement goes a long way.
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