Never give up on your dreams, but there are times when you need to make adjustments.
For over four years, I worked 12 hour days, much of which was spent trying to build an online business that would replace my income and set my soul free from the 9-5 drudgery.
I would struggle home from work, stuff my face with a quick bite to eat, give my wife a hurried kiss, and jump on my computer for the next five hours to work on my business.
Balance in life? What is that?
Although it was not easy, I finally managed to figure it out and walk away from an eight-year career that I was no longer passionate about.
Over that four-year period, I picked up a few tips on how to work a full-time day job, build an online business, and still spend quality time with my wife. Here are three tips I would like to pass on to you.
1. Bracket your time.
Set time limits on how long you are going to work on your dream business. It takes discipline to stop an activity when you are in the flow. Sometimes I would miss my stop time, but the practice alone did wonders for increasing my awareness and made spending time with my wife easier and more consistent.
Give your work two hours of laser focus and then spend an hour with your wife or girlfriend. It’s not only about the amount of time but the quality of that time. When you are with her, really be with her, when you are working on your business, be there. Commit to giving your total focus for a bracketed amount of time.
2. Focus only on process goals.
This one idea changed everything for me. After doing some personal development reading, I found out that I was wasting a ton of time and mental energy worrying about the results I so desperately wanted. When I switched to focusing only on my process goals (the work you do to get the results), my anxiety went way down.
I was much more efficient and productive with my work time. Although I’m still not perfect, when I feel myself getting anxious about a big event in my business or life, I switch my focus to the work that needs to be done. And I let the results take care of themselves. Try it! It’s truly freeing.
3. Don’t be afraid to pivot.
I struggled for four years, “quitting” on two different businesses that were just not working for me. Sometimes it’s a small, 15-degree pivot that takes you to the one that finally works. What are you doing right now? If you have been struggling for more than eight months and still are not getting closer to your goals, pause for a minute.
I recommend thinking about the byproducts of what you are already doing and are good at. What skill do you have that’s in-demand?Maybe you are a podcast host who is struggling to build an audience, but you’re a whiz at editing. That could be your business right there. For me, I was doing a ton of Google Hangouts and became a master at them. That was how Hangouts That Convert was born and became my full-time business.
I now make a full-time living working with passionate lifestyle entrepreneurs who want to learn how to use Google Hangout webinars to build their online businesses. Because I built a successful online business, I also consult with others who want to do the same. The combination of the two provides a full-time income, and I have never been more fulfilled in my life.
Never give up on your dreams, but sometimes we need to focus on less and pivot a little to get where we want to go. The road to success is never straight. Make sure to grab your steering wheel and take control.
Photo: Flickr/ Aaron van Dorn