How To Work A Full Time Job & Still Build A Business Of Your Own

This is a special guest article reprinted with permission by Sue Painter of Confident Marketer.  I came across it in her ezine and thought the five points she offered were fantastic for anyone trying to transition from working a job to creating their own home business.

I promised to answer some of the questions you gave me when you took my survey a few months ago, remember?  One question that several people asked was how they could build their own business when they were already working a full time job.  From the questions, I can tell there is a good bit of frustration, exhaustion, and worry going on about this topic.  So I decided to pull together some ways to build a business even if you are working.

  1. Assess your commitment honestly. You may SAY you want to build a business, but if you find yourself “never getting around to it” then your commitment isn’t high enough for success.  Consistent effort is the key.  No matter what else your chores, jobs, or commitments are, you have to carve out some hours each week to work on your dream.  You can encourage yourself by remembering that what you do NOW changes your future LATER.  If you are not willing to say no to other commitments and find 4 to 6 hours a week minimum, you are not committed.  Quick torturing yourself and give it up.
  2. State your commitment to everyone and ask for support. Things will have to change if you want to make this work.  Your spouse will have to take the kids two nights a week and leave you alone to work.  Your children will have to pick up after themselves a bit more, and learn that when your “office hours” are scheduled to leave you alone.  Maybe you serve on one less committee at church.  Remember that you are loud and proud about what you are working for, and that it will benefit you, your family, and the community when you succeed.  Ask for encouragement, ideas, and support.  Stand firm when people try to make you feel guilty.  Stay away from people who are negative about your idea.
  3. Even though you are quite busy, take time several times a month for down time. Go get a pedicure, sit outside and read a book, take a long bath.  Do whatever will give you respite and help you refresh your mind, body, and spirit.  And no guilt, either.  You’re working a full time job and building another, after all!
  4. Consider asking to work part time if at all possible. Your energy and commitment to your business will increase by leaps and bounds if you will risk doing this.  And let me tell you, great employees are hard to find.  You are valuable, and while you think your boss might “never” agree to let you work 32 hours a week instead of 40, you might be pretty surprised.  It’s all in how you ask and what you ask for.  More often than not, you can work this out.  You just say it isn’t possible because it scares YOU and makes you really, truly commit to your own business.
  5. Get coaching. Yes, I know I’m a coach and I know you’re thinking “of course she’ll say that.”  Here’s the truth – you can’t do this without objective support and someone who knows the ropes and can save you time.  Developing your business skills and mind set comes from spending time with those who know what you don’t.  You can work with many coaches (including me) just twice a month and still gain tons of expertise and support.  It doesn’t have to be weekly, and it doesn’t have to go on forever.  Don’t fight this and make excuses.  Just do it!  You can get into a group rather than private coaching, and that will save you money, too.

Sue Painter works with solopreneurs to get the muck out of their marketing and their minds set right for success.  An expert business strategist, Sue is the owner of two successful businesses.  You can get her twice-monthly e-zine filled with biz tips at

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  1. Thanks for sharing this Michelle. There are many valid points here. I can see where number 3 would be a challenge for all of us. On the other hand, I know it is important so that we can clear our mind of the clutter.
    Again, thanks for sharing.

    1. Definitely can be a challenge. Glad the article was helpful.

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