Victoria DeVita – I run my freelance business from my bed while my toddler sleeps beside me as my boss texts me to confirm my shift change for the following day.
I am the C-Suite executive and the lowest man in the ranks of my business all while being an employee for a major corporation at the same time.
Deciding to start up your own business comes with a lot of excitement, but it can also come with a lot of questions and overwhelm. One of the ways to mitigate some of the stress of financial insecurity is to continue working at your part or full-time job that provides a consistent paycheck, however, even that comes with its own set of challenges.
I have found myself reaching circus-tightrope walker levels of balancing acts to make sure that everything that needs to get done, gets done and I have compiled a few of these tips below to help you as you step up to the tightrope yourself!
Time Management is Key
Now, this doesn’t mean you need to rush to the store, buy the prettiest daily planner you can, fill it all out, and stick to it super rigidly. For me, that planner would get about two days of use before it ended up in the bottom of some drawer only to be found again during my next move. With that being said, one of the biggest pieces of advice I can give is to have a good handle on what needs to get done and when. I like to manage this by writing down the major things I have to get done for my business.
For me, as a freelance writer, this can include things like reaching out to potential clients, sending over complete pieces, or actually writing something. I write down all of these things and then I build those things into my set schedule (the one set by my employer and my family). I find that having everything written down keeps me from letting something slip through the cracks.
Know Your Transferable Skills
Whatever your job title is at your place of employment, you most likely have some unique skills that help you do that job.
I used to work as a daycare teacher and that allowed me to have conflict resolution skills like no one’s business. When I branched out on my own, this skill came in handy a lot more than I could have imagined.
Being able to market yourself with a skill that might not normally be associated with your business can help you in landing more clients. For example, if you run a construction business obviously people probably want to see previous projects you’ve worked on and how good you are at building. But, if you own a construction business and you have a background in marketing, maybe your website and social media presence catch new customers’ eyes and they’re more likely to remember you over a competitor. Being able to transfer your skills from your day job to your own business is a great way to set yourself apart!
Understand Your Limitations
This last tip might be the most important one I can offer you. When I first decided to become a freelance writer, I wanted to put the pedal to the metal and treat it as my full-time job. However, that currently isn’t financially plausible for my family. This also meant that I was putting in full-time hours without getting a full-time income. I needed to realize that this business can be successful but that it was going to need to take a back seat to my family and our financial security.
I didn’t want to be getting home from work only to jump onto the computer and keep working. Where does that leave me time to hang out with my daughter or watch TV with my husband? Maybe your limitations are the same as mine, maybe they’re different. But understanding them and accepting them can help you from a lot of hair-pulling and frustration when it comes to running your own business. Remember that it is okay to start slow and build up your business as you go!
Victoria DeVita is a freelance writer and author who has spent their entire life writing in one form or another. While they were a stay-at-home mom for their daughter, Victoria found writing to be an incredible way to stay grounded and flex their creative muscles. Graduating with a Master’s degree in English and Creative Writing in meant that they could set their sights on making writing their full-time gig. With a focus on accessible and engaging storytelling, Victoria prides themself on writing content that understands their audience and meets them where they’re at. They are always interested in learning new things and answering questions on the topics they love! Find Victoria at Instagram @victoria.devita and at victoriadevita.com.
Photo Source: Kyle Glenn, @kylejglenn, via Unsplash.