8: Start a Side Business with this Time Management Strategy

Now listen, you and I know that starting a business does take time. It takes extra time. Even if the business comes to life really quickly, you still got to find time in your day to actually put in the effort to make it happen, but how do you get a business off of the ground when you feel really stretched for time?

Whether that be because you already have a nine to five and so this is really just a side hustle or it could be that you are building a different branch and your business and the full business is already taking up too much time. It could be children, it could be family, it could be travel or health.

Many things really are tugging at our time, so if you want to start your online business and truly make it a priority, I’m going to give you three simple ways to do that.

Step one is to actually choose the days and times every single week.

I recommend that you have weekly days and times that you are focusing on your business. For me, it’s every Monday and Friday. I protect Mondays and Fridays. I’m a full-time consultant, but I’m still protecting Mondays and Fridays for all of the work that needs to get done. Tuesday, Wednesdays and Thursdays for me are my coaching time. So that’s what I’m taking meetings and that’s what I’m taking.

Now, of course, there are drastic exceptions. If I get called by the Steve Harvey Show, we’ll then, yes, I’m going to fly out to Chicago and film an episode, right? But if not that I’m protecting that time. So for you, it could be maybe Tuesday and Thursday evening, or maybe it’s Sunday afternoon or maybe it’s Saturday from nine to four. Whatever works best for you. I want you to think about what are those times and then how can you protect them.

So it’s not about just saying, oh, I’ll find some times from free time. Well, anytime that I get an extra three hours, I really, really need you to focus on when is this going to happen? And then protect that time, protect it just as you would protect your sleep time or that just a few seconds that you need to brush your teeth before you go to bed. Protect it like you protect the kid’s tee ball practice and that dot. Your daughter’s gymnastics or protected times get respected so that’s why we’ve got to find the time and then protect it.

Step two, I want you to create a routine around that protected time so we in our protected times.

Like our sleep times, for example, those are generally protected times even though they could get kind of squished one way or the other, but in general we know that we’re going to go to bed at some point and our bedtime routine if you will, is like maybe you brush your teeth, maybe you put on a sleeping mask, maybe you brush your hair a hundred times. Whatever your nighttime routine is, it sets your mind and it sets your body into that zone. Then when you wake up in the morning, you have a different routine.

Even if it’s not conscious and maybe you didn’t even plot it out, but something is happening, right? You wake up, maybe you throw the covers up on the bed, you put them back on. That in and of itself is a routine. So whatever it is is your routine. I want you to create a routine for this protected work time so you’re protected.

Work time routine might be something like you open your computer and you do a quick meditation or maybe it’s that you get out your to-do list and you circle one thing that you’re going to start with. Or maybe it’s simply that you, you know, just grab a great cup of coffee and a glass of water and you sit down at your computer and whatever it is, when it becomes a conscious routine, that is what’s going to send your body and your mind being ready to accept that space over the course of time when it comes to be, you know, Tuesday night you’ll be like, oh my body’s craving my my little cup of whatever and my glass of water and sit down and be ready for work.

The third step is to choose one goal that you know you can accomplish and that protected amount of time.

So your protected time might be nine hours or 10 hours. You’re protected. Time might be an hour or two hours or three hours. It might even be just 15 minutes to get started. Whatever it is that you have set aside is protected time. I want you to think about what is it that I’m actually going to accomplish in that time zone. Now, here is why this is so important. When you start to set your mind and body and juror routine for your protected time and then you show up for it and then you start getting “after win after win”, you start accomplishing your goals and you sit down with one goal and then you get in the habit of accomplishing it. It’s going to lead to increased motivation.

A lot of times people think that results come after motivation, but really motivation comes after results.

You got to sit down and do all the things to get you ready and then just go into the work. When you see results, motivation will come. So that’s why we say just pick one thing and we’ll write it down so that you know that that is what you are going for and that protected work time. Now again, you’re protected work time might be nine hours, so you might be able to get some really big project done or it might be just 15 minutes or just an hour and a half or just three hours, whatever it is. You’re just focused in on those one task. So I want to share with you about how I did this.

When I started my business years ago, I actually was living with a roommate in La and I had to tell this room I was working a nine to five job. So, and really it ended up being more like eight to six, right? Like many of us who start with a side hustle, it ends up really kind of going over. So I want to share with you how I got started protecting my time. It was when I actually was building my business as a side hustle. I had a nine to five job and I’m going to share with you exactly how I protected my time, both from not just myself but also from friends and from roommates and from colleagues and from all the other things that were coming at me at the time.

Just like you, I’m sure to have many other things coming at you. You’ve got to figure out ways to protect your time. So I’m sharing this story with you. I want to hear when your week can you protect your time, even if it’s just a short amount of time. When in your week can you consistently protect even a small amount of time. Hopefully, it’s a larger amount of time, but even if it’s small, that is okay too.

So as I mentioned now in my business on Mondays and Fridays are fully protected. I’d always protect my mornings for my morning routine, which usually for me goes till like 10 or 11 and then at that time, Mondays and Fridays are fully protected until 5:00 PM and during those times I get so much work done like so much because it’s protected time and I know exactly what I’m going to be accomplishing on those days now.

When I first started at my side hustle many years ago, my protected time was Saturday, so I woke up at Saturday morning even earlier than I woke up from my nine to five job during the week because I was so excited about building my business. So I woke up early on Saturday mornings and it went until about one or two in the afternoon on Saturdays and I say one or two my protected time was till about noon, but I was getting into it and really loved it. So sometimes I stayed engaged until one o’clock or two o’clock but my protected time, it was about eight until noon on Saturdays.

Now, I also had Tuesdays and Thursdays in the middle of the week, just in the evenings because I would get home from work, I would go to the gym, get my workout in, and then I would come home from that. Then I say, now it’s time for me to settle in. So from about eight o’clock till maybe 11 o’clock at night and I’m, I just can’t fully remember it right now. It seems like a lifetime ago, but it was about eight to 11 o’clock at night. That was protected time. And to do that, I had to tell my roommate that, hey look, I’m going into my room and I’m working on my business so I can’t be bothered. I can’t go out. I can’t be doing anything else. Like no, nothing can be going on right now. I just really need to focus on my business. And my roommate fully respected that, which was awesome. And I think it was also, you know, partially the way you communicate it to.

So when you communicate that your business is important to you, others will respect that as well. And as I mentioned, when you get results in your business, it will lead to increased motivation. So for me, when I started my side hustle, I really wasn’t seeing a lot of results right away, but at least I knew I was accomplishing my tasks. So every day that I sat down ready to say, okay, what am I banging out today? I was getting those things done and it was feeling so good to say, wow, this week I accomplished this, this, and this had so much accomplished. Then before you knew it, I think that went on for maybe a few years after I learned the strategy of protected time.

As soon as I was doing that, maybe it only went on for a year, year and a half before I was fully able to transition full time into my business. So that protected time can be huge. And how you allow yourself to transition out of a nine to five or to add more and more time to your business to continue to grow it.

What is your current time that you are protecting or if you haven’t done the strategy yet, when in your week can you protect some time so that you can drastically improve your business, make big gains in a very short amount of time?