It’s been 2 months day since I left my day job and went full-time with my business! Do I feel like it’s been two weeks? Absolutely. I can’t believe how the time has passed. The days look more different than I imagined but I’m trying to stop everyday and reflect on what a gift this is.
My husband reminds me on days where I begin to feel overwhelmed that I’m literally living out my dream right now. How’s that for a kick in the shorts? Haha! I am thankful that he points me in the direction of gratitude and awe of what God has done (and is doing!). I need the reminders because it’s easy to get lost in the details of everyday life.
I’m sharing with you 3 lessons I’ve learned in the first 2 months of being a Creative Entrepreneur. Although my area of work is Virtual Assistance in Social Media Management & Digital Marketing, I believe these can apply to anyone trying to grow their business, whether that’s full time or a side-gig. I’d love to hear what you’re learning if you’re on this journey too! Comment below or leave me a message on what you think!
1. TIME MANAGEMENT ISN'T LAME
I am slowly learning that structure is my friend. That friend’s name is time-management. It’s what I need most when balancing working on accounts, growing my business, being present in my marriage, hanging out with friends, serving our church, and trying to take care of myself PLUS other random chores / life things in between.
I used to think that having structure was pretty lame because I love spontaneity! Random coffee dates, going with the flow, etc., (basically my college experience). It’s how I’m wired! Too much structure can sometimes stress me out – i.e., over-planned vacations/weekends, everyday looking exactly the same, or being locked into something that’s not a good fit. I'm looking for the unicorn in all of this time management : Balance. I don't always want to be working nor do I want to be irresponsible with my time.
What I’ve learned is that taking control of the hours you have will give you more peace of mind when balancing several roles. Plan out your tasks ahead of time, work when you’re most efficient, set an alarm to wake up and give yourself grace when it doesn't look perfect! I think it takes much more time to settle into a new routine than we understand.
2. COMMUNITY IS ESSENTIAL
If you’re on your own, chances are that you don’t have a cubicle buddy to talk to or the support of a full office when you could use it. Even though you're on your own now, community is still so important. Find people who encourage you, cheer you on, challenge you, and people who are in the same field as you.
If you're struggling with finding community here are a few ideas! Check out local networking groups, The Rising Tide Society's Facebook page, or ask around to your friends if they know anyone in your field! There are also local Facebook groups where people in your area who are like minded get together for coffee or cocktails. Start searching or asking around! I think it's worth it to get out of your comfort zone and meet new people!
I’ve been so grateful for the support that I’ve received in the form of FaceTime sessions, random questions on Facebook groups, lunch dates, and more! I definitely do not have this all figured out and the questions are plentiful. I have been joining in work-sesh dates with friends who run their own businesses too and it helps me feel not so alone or crazy :) If you know, you know. it's super nice to relate to others in the same boat. It's helped and it's been an important part of these two months!
3. SET YOUR FUTURE-SELF UP FOR SUCCESS
As I grow my business, I know inquiries will increase, the same questions will arise, and I’ll be repeating certain tasks weekly. My goal to help out my future self is to create workflow systems, templates for e-mails, and a loose-framework for how I’m going to do the essentials for my business. Like tracking expenses, invoices, replying to e-mails, making graphics, Pinterest workflows, etc., This way, I'm not losing time doing the same thing over and over again. The goal is to maximize my time when things pick up much more. I hopefully won't miss important opportunities or spend too much time on something that could be pre-planned!
Thanks for reading! I hope this was helpful. I know I will be learning every step of the way and these are just the first few things I've come across! Pin the image below if you'd like to reference this for later! What do you think? Have you experienced any of these things above with starting your own business?