Are you wanting to start your own business and pursue your dreams? Do you want to be able to quit your job and fulfill your passions?
Starting your own business is definitely a fantastic route to take to create your own destiny. The challenge is, most people are stuck with their “full time job”, which doesn't allow them the time or energy to really start their business and get it off the ground running. Not only that, but other commitments can get in the way – friends, family, your social life, other activities, etc…
This is not only a problem that I've encountered when I first decided to start my own business, but it's something many others have faced as well. I recently received a message from a follower of PLM asking how they can start their own business while working a part-time job and I decided to create a video blog post to share my answer.
Watch the video below:
You Have To Be Willing To Make Sacrifices
Starting a business isn't an easy task. It requires a lot of time, energy and effort. Running a business isn't like a “job” where you punch the clock and you're off work at 5PM. You also don't get paid for just “showing up”, rather you get paid only based on performance. If you work 8 hours a day at your job and don't produce any results, you still get paid for that time you spent. With a business, YOU ONLY MAKE MONEY WHEN YOU PRODUCE RESULTS. To build a successful business, it takes more commitment than anything else. It has to become your #1 priority and you need to be willing to give something up in order to succeed. The bottom line is, you have to be willing to make sacrifices.
I started my first business when I was 21 years old. I quit my job and went cold turkey, pursuing this dream I had of creating a coaching and seminar business to help people overcome some of the challenges I went through in my life. I didn't know squat about business, I just knew I had a passion for coaching. I was in for a huge surprise, as starting a business and making a profit wasn't as easy as I first anticipated. I struggled for months finding ways to pay my rent. I was in total desperation mode and was without any “security” that my job provided me for years. I had my back against the wall many times and had to tap into my resourcefulness to find ways to make money. As a result, I didn't have much of a life outside of my business.
I still remember at one point in my life, I was living in my friends living room as a “sacrifice” to get out of my credit card debt. I was embarrassed by this and definitely wasn't living at the standard I had expected. Some of the other sacrifices I made was to work 7 days a week, including Friday and Saturday nights. I wasn't going out much and often had to say “no” to many friends that invited me out. I made a bold move that year and decided to travel Thailand and Southeast Asia, as I figured I'd be able to travel and work, and even save money as it's very inexpensive in that part of the world. I didn't have a “home” anyways, and I figured this way I could work on my business and not have any distractions. I was first getting into starting an internet business, as I knew making passive income was going to be my path to financial freedom.
I was at the Beijing airport for a layover when I took out my journal and wrote down my goals for the next 3 months. My goal with my internet business was to make $300/mo passive income and I decided I wasn't coming back to Canada with anything less. I believed that $300/mo would change my life. It would help me be able to afford my own place and not have to live in my friends living room. It would be the start of something big, as I knew if I could make $300/mo, I could easily scale it up to $1000/mo and more. The work was about to begin. So was the sacrifices.
During my 3-month trip to Southeast Asia, I spent 90% of my time at restaurants, cafes and inside my hotel room building my online business. I was going through multiple programs, hired a coach even though I couldn't afford it, and was working nearly 16 hours a day. I would stay in hostels in most cases and share rooms with out backpackers. While nearly all of these travellers were out partying and having fun, I was working. I didn't want to be struggling anymore and I dreamed of being able to stay at the beautiful hotels and resorts, having the finances and freedoms to do so. I was committed. I was willing to do whatever it takes.
Long story short, I achieved my goal within those 3 months. Soon after when I returned to Vancouver, my income grew month by month. It went from $300/mo, up to $500/mo, then $1000/mo, $2000/mo, $4000/mo, and in a little over a year, over $10,000/mo. The sacrifices and commitment that I made is what got me to where I am today. At 24 years old, I became “financially free” and had my passive income cover all of my expenses. I didn't have to “work” anymore, but I soon discovered that being semi-retired is extremely boring. When I was 25 years old, I started ProjectLifeMastery.com as a passion and have been able to grow it to be a successful blog, which is something I'm very proud of.
SACRIFICES ARE REQUIRED. Part of getting what you want is to understand what you have to give up to get it. When I hear people not willing to give up their social life or other activities to grow a business, I know right away they simply aren't committed enough. They are “comfortable” and want it to be easy. If you are working from 9-5, what are you doing from 6 to midnight? It's during those hours that you are going to have to commit to building your business. If you want to know what the truth about success is, check out this blog post that I put up that really explains what it takes.
Create A Schedule
Scheduling is important when it comes to managing your life effectively. Most people don't have a “system” or way to really manage their lives. In the my life plan video blog I talk a lot about how I manage the different areas of my life. A big part of it is planning the week in advance. I know exactly when I'm going to be working on my different businesses, the times and dates that I'm going to workout, which days of the week I'm going to socialize, and the days that I'm going to “relax”. This is extremely important and you MUST NOT deviate from this schedule. If you have a work session planned and scheduled for Monday evening and your friend calls you to invite you out to an event, you need to be willing to decline it. You have to be proactive, not reactive. You need to make sure you're consistent with your own standards.
I generally don't recommend to people to just “quit their jobs” and go for it with their business. The younger you are, the more risks you can take, whereas if you're older with a family, I definitely wouldn't recommend it. I've always believed you need to have SOME source of security first and a back-up plan. Make sure you have at least 3 months of earnings as savings in the back for security. I'd also make sure that your new business generates enough cashflow for you to live off of for a few months first, then quit your job. This is important, as with business, income isn't always stable. Your income from your business will always fluctuate month to month, whereas a job provides you consistent security.
Make sure you determine however many hours each week that you need to start your business. Project Life Mastery is a part-time business that I run. I run many other online marketing businesses that are much, much more profitable to me than Project Life Mastery is. With Project Life Mastery, I simply schedule certain hours each week to work on it. I usually just focus on doing one video blog post each week and have been fairly consistent with that for a year and a half. With coaching, I schedule specific days and times each week to focus on coaching my clients. I also run a business publishing books on Kindle and I usually spend a few hours on Monday for that. My life is managed effectively, because I schedule my time and I'm able to run multiple businesses because of it.
Starting Your Own Business Is Worth It
It is worth it to start your own business. It is definitely not “easier” than a job, but it will force you to really grow and the potential is much more lucrative. With running my online businesses, I set my own hours, get to work from home, and have freedom to do what I want, when I want. I have been able to travel around the world and still work from my laptop, which is an amazing privilege to have. With an online business, you can also make “passive income”, which means you can make money while you sleep! A business allows you to really make a difference in the world, while pursuing what you're passionate about. It can be very rewarding and fulfilling.
I don't regret starting a business. I do think if I knew what it would have taken to get me to where I am now, I most likely wouldn't have started one in the first place. But the struggles are something I am grateful for having gone through, as they shaped me who I am today and made me a much better person. A business is the ultimate training grounds for anyone that is on the journey to self-development and wants to become more and give more. I wouldn't have it any other way and I could NEVER see myself ever having a job again.
If you are considering starting a business, DO IT. Make sure you are aware of what you're getting into and what it takes to really succeed. If you are willing to do what it takes, take that leap and go for it!