How to Start a Business While Working Full-Time

You’re tired.

You go to your day job every day just to watch the clock.

Spoiler alert – it never moves any faster.

You like your job. You certainly don’t love it, but you like it. After all, it helps you pay the rent and put food on your plate.

It’s draining, though. There’s something missing that makes it hard for you to clock in every day. So what’s the solution?

A side hustle.

Yes, you read that correctly. The answer is to work more, but it’s different. You’re working on something you’re passionate about. You’re contributing to a community that shares the same interests as you.

It’s a lot of work, but it’ll be fulfilling.

So, how do you start this side hustle without quitting your day job?


1. Find Your Passion

It’s called a side hustle for a reason. To make anything happen, you’re going to have to grind, push and work hard for your goals. It only makes sense that your side hustle revolves around something you love to do.

Find that one thing you’re passionate about. It can be an artistic endeavor, a personality trait or a niche you know you can make a profit in. Once you’ve found that passion, turn it into a business you can monetize.

Chances are your day job doesn’t completely satisfy your passion. This is crucial today, since data from MOO reveals that career satisfaction contributes to personal happiness.

Yes, your side hustle could help you find true happiness.

Do you like helping people? Start a consulting service where you give people life advice. Are you passionate about cooking? Start a food blog and write recipe books you can sell. Love photography or design? You know what to do.

Look for something you’re passionate about that you can’t utilize in your full-time job.

2. Do Your Research

You’ve defined your passion and you know what type of product or service you want to provide. Now it’s time to do your research.

If there’s something you’re particularly passionate about, then chances are you know a bit about it.

Chances are other people are passionate about it as well. This also means there’s a way to make money.

Do your research on the niche you’ve selected and see how other people are making it work. See if there’s anything unique you can bring to the table that’ll fit in the same formula people are currently using.

This research can be done in the morning before work, during breaks or after work. You’ll have plenty of time every day to get on your computer and learn about your niche market.

3. Set a Passion Reminder

Having a side hustle is hard. You have to spend eight hours at work and then find the time and energy to work on something that might not make you any money for a while.

Set a frequent passion reminder where you revisit the reason why you started your side hustle. In fact, write this reason on a piece of paper and put it on your wall or bathroom mirror to keep you going and remind you why you chose to start this side business.

4. Keep a Schedule

The side hustle world you’re about to enter can be stressful and unorganized, but only if you are.

Make sure you create a schedule and stick to it.

Make clear goals for yourself each day. Goals make you happier and motivate you to work harder. Buy a to-do list, planner or desk-sized calendar and write down tasks each morning. Set realistic expectations and work toward your goal every day. This will help you organize and separate tasks from your day job and side hustle.

When you start your side hustle, you’ll realize there’s much more work to do than you originally thought. Keep track of it all so you don’t get overwhelmed.

5. Meet Other Entrepreneurs

Networking is crucial for any business. You’ll want to meet people in the same field as you to learn from their experiences and impress them so much they recommend you to their audience.

The more connections you make, the better your side business will be. Business reasons aside, it’s enlightening to meet people who share the same passion as you. It’ll motivate and drive you to work harder when your full-time job has exhausted you.

The internet has made it extremely easy to find these people and communicate with them at all times. It’s very possible to work around your job schedule and email or Skype someone later in the day.

You’ll become part of a community of people who share the same passion as you, and that’ll only take you further.

6. Be Open at Work

At first you might be reluctant to tell your co-workers and managers about your side hustle. You might think they don’t appreciate your hard work being used elsewhere.

Be open about your side hustle. Not telling people will give off the idea that you’re hiding something. This is worse for management, because they might think you’re planning on leaving your job. Reassure them that it’s only a side hustle that you’re working on in your free time so they know you’re still working hard at your current job.

Your co-workers will appreciate your side business and might be interested in starting one themselves. After all, 6 million Americans work a second job to follow their passion.

At the very least, you may have a few new customers.

7. Make Sacrifices

It’s possible to have a side hustle without quitting your job. The only thing that’s required from you is hard work and, with that, sacrifices.

Your only enemy in this pursuit is time. Your day job requires eight hours and your sleep schedule requires eight hours. This leaves you with another eight hours every day. How will you spend it?

Most of that time will be devoted to your side hustle. This means no more late-night television, Netflix bingeing or hours surfing social media. This side hustle is basically your baby and you need to take care of it in order for it to grow.

Decide what sacrifices you’re willing to make and prioritize the rest. The only thing that separates you is how you spend your time.

8. Hire a Virtual Assistant

Time is money, so why waste it checking emails and making phone calls?

Hire a virtual assistant to deal with tasks that would otherwise waste your time and prevent you from getting any work done. This allows you to focus on the meaningful aspects of your company that aids growth and stability.

Another perk of having a virtual assistant is that you have someone working on your side hustle while you’re at your day job. This means progress is being made and customers are being helped while you’re doing a completely different job.

9. Focus on Productivity

Now that you’ve started your side hustle, productivity is more important than ever. You need to learn what makes you productive and when you can get more done.

Do you work better in the morning or at night? (Some, including myself, suggest spending an hour on your side hustle first thing in the morning.)

Do you meditate?

Are you more productive after yoga?

How about when you get an extra hour of sleep?

Now is the time to ask yourself these questions and create a daily routine that optimizes your productivity. Get yourself in the right mindset to be the most productive you can possibly be and your side hustle won’t seem so demanding. You’ll even have time for some Netflix when you’re done.

Join the Hustle

You’re about to start a new journey that’s exciting, and we want to hear about it! Comment below and subscribe to Punched Clocks for more on making your side hustle a success.

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Sarah Landrum is the founder of Punched Clocks.

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