Wanna work at home so that you can be your own boss? It’s not as scary as it seems.
Are you in a job that you’d really like to change? Or are you at home and feel like you could be doing more with your life or your time? Would you like to work at home but feel overwhelmed by the choices and decisions you have to make?
Today, I want to share with you why I’m self-employed and how working at home can help you pursue your dreams.
The Entrepreneur Bug
I suppose you could say I come from an entrepreneurial family. My mum and dad both owned and ran several businesses throughout my childhood. My dad owned a juice factory and now runs a health clinic. And my mum owned a clothing store, an advertising company and then later, a beauty clinic.
I had living examples of being your own boss my whole childhood. And as inspiring as that was, it did have it’s ups and downs. My parents worked hard and they faced several challenges over the years. They earned well and we were always provided for, but they did see some tough times.
So when I decided to start a music agency at the age of 20 and phase out working in an accounts company full time, I had seen as a kid how businesses were run. And with my experience of keeping accounts, I felt quite confident that I could make something of my new business.
Since starting my own business sixteen years ago, I haven’t looked back. Things have changed since I ran my music agency. I’m now a performer rather than an agent. And I’ve also pivoted into the online world and given my passion for writing and stationery an outlet with this blog and my stationery company, Paper Me Pretty.
But I know I couldn’t go back to my 9-5 job working in an accounts company. No, sir-ee Bob! I’m very happy being my own boss. I LOVE my job! I could seriously do it for free – but let’s not tell anyone that shall we? 😉 And I love being able to be with my kids and homeschool them. I love working with my husband. And I love being able to work when I want on what I want!
How much do YOU want change?
I guess the first thing to find out is, how badly do you want to change your current situation? I’m not gonna lie to you. Being an entrepreneur isn’t always easy. You need to keep pushing forward through tough times and plateaus. And the people who make it work, are the people who persevere.
You’ll need to want change so much so that you couldn’t contemplate going back to your current situation. Whatever it is that you would like to pursue, you need to want it. Not just feel like you should give it a go because ‘well, why not?’. You need to desire it. Deeply. So deeply that it keeps you motivated through difficult times – because there will be some challenges. That’s the truth.
Find out what it is you’d like to do
Once you know that you really want to change your current situation and you’re willing to put in the muscle to achieve it. You need to find out what it is you’d really love to do.
Now I’m not talking about, what you could do to bring in some extra cash because you could really use some moola right this second. Because if you only work for money, guess what – you’ll be miserable. It won’t keep you joyful, passionate, and excited.
You need to find out what it is that inspires you. That fuels your creativity and passion. What you’d happily stay up working late at night for. When you have a job like that, you’ll seriously find it hard to retire!
Find out how much time you can sacrifice
Look at your week and work out how many fringe hours you have to work on building a business. Where do you have gaps that you can dedicate to this new venture? You can see how I’ve scheduled my business time in this post.
When you’ve done that, look at what you have in your week that you can sacrifice. What can come out or be set aside, even temporarily, so that you can really get the wheels in motion for your new dream?
Once you’ve found those hours, consider them unmovable. This is your future. Although you probably won’t earn anything from the hours you put in at the beginning, treat it like a job. You need to show up for work and focus.
How much does your business require financially
If you’re looking to start working at home because you need the extra income, you probably don’t have a lot to invest at the start of your business. Most businesses require some kind of financial investment, however small, before you start seeing money roll in. That may be the cost of a website domain for a few bucks or getting some business cards printed to give to potential clients. You might also need to pay for training and education.
Work out whatever the most likely costs will be at a bare minimum and whether you have that to invest. If you don’t, work out how much you can put aside so that you can reach this amount. I don’t feel any business should start in debt if it can helped. That’s not a good way to start off. Get scrappy and work with what you have!
Get help to work at home
Once you know what it is you’d like to do. And you have a small budget set aside to cover any initial costs. It’s time to get help on how to start and grow your business so that you can work at home.
My husband often says that;
a fool learns only from his own mistakes, but a wise man learns from the mistakes of others.
Don’t try to rely solely on your own knowledge. Use the wisdom of others who have gone before you. Learn from their mistakes as well as their successes. You will save yourself a lot of time, effort and money.
Learn from experts and experienced entrepreneurs so that you can be successful with your passion. Ask questions everywhere you can. Sign up to an online course or attend a seminar that would really help you to gain more knowledge that you can use to launch and grow your business. Listen to podcasts that are related to your business. Get yourself in the circles of those who can teach you – in person or virtually. Just use the wisdom of others who have gone before you. Because, it’s highly likely someone has.
When I started blogging, I spent a lot of money on various courses. Too much in fact.
If I could start all over again, I would have just joined The Member’s Club at FEA and saved myself a ton of money! FEA (aka the Female Entrepreneur’s Association) is a membership site that is dedicated to helping women build successful businesses. Carrie, the owner, gets an expert each month to give a course on a business topic. So essentially, when you join the Members’ Club, you get access to a lot of courses from world-class experts for a fraction of the cost. I can’t recommend it highly enough!
One note about information
It’s easy to fall into the pit of “Never Ending Learning”. This is where you just consume information, but very little of it is put into practice. Don’t do that. It just wastes your precious time (and money if you paid for that information).
Make sure to always implement what you’re learning. I’d also recommend having a learning schedule where you only work on one course at a time. If you join the Members’ Club at FEA, they have implementation calls during the month to actually help you put each course into practice!
So, if you’re tempted to do a new course you’ve just found, but are already stuck in another course – don’t do it! Ask yourself ‘is the course I’m doing right now proving useful?’. If it is, stick with it. And hold off starting that new course.
If it isn’t, then don’t waste another minute on something which isn’t helping you move forward. Your time is too precious for that. And I say this with real conviction because often, as women, we’re building these businesses in the margins of our time. And we don’t get a lot of margins! So we have to be ruthless with what we’re spending our margins on!
You’ve got this, my friend. Your work-at-home dream awaits. Pursue it!
Resources for you
- Female Entrepreneur Association Members’ Club – an online membership club geared at helping women build successful businesses. I’ve used and referenced a ton of Carrie’s material and courses when starting and growing my own business and highly recommend becoming a member. I’ve been a member for years and I’m still a member!
- Profit First – a budgeting system for your business that will keep you in profit.
- YNAB – budgeting software I couldn’t live without for my business and my personal life. It works brilliantly with the Profit First method of money management.
- Living Forward – a book that I recommend for everyone. This will inspire you to leave a legacy – whether that’s through building a business or just in the way you live your life. It contains thoughtful questions that will give you clarity on the direction you want to go in life.
If you’d like some help planning your day so that you can be productive and use your margins well, be sure to grab my Daily Game Plan!