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Trying to balance a 9-to-5 job and personal business venture can be hard work. You want to be an efficient professional but also need to dedicate time to your hustle. Kudos to those who are able to quit their jobs and pursue their dreams full time. Not many of us have the financial backing or support that doesn’t require a life line.

When I first started my journey down the path of self-employment, I surely did hold on to my job. There’s no industry that provides you guaranteed success without a few hurdles. I wanted to make sure I gave myself enough time to build a name and list of reliable clientele. Over time, I started tracking my growth and took baby steps before taking off my water wings and diving in the ocean.

Everyone is different when it comes to their entrepreneurial realities. Just because someone you know saw success with their venture doesn’t mean the same thing will happen to you. Circumstances, opportunities and connections all play a part in what takes off, and what requires a little more time to develop.

Whether you’re just starting out or are still trying to find the energy to keep on going, roll up your sleeves and ready yourself for battle. Here are some pointers for part-time entrepreneurs on how to juggle their job and hustle.

Don’t rely on company time to get things done. Yes you might have some downtime during the day to fit in some work for yourself, but don’t rely too much on this. It’s easy to get caught up in your own business and forget to take care of tasks you’re paid to do. Productivity can and will go out the window if you aren’t keeping it official. Folks get let go for not doing what’s asked of them.

Use your downtime wisely. You might want to rearrange your schedule to make room for your side business. Utilize your lunch break, work commute (if you use public transportation) and time before you clock in to complete a few tasks for yourself. It’s also a good idea to take a look at your free time to see if you’re overloading your schedule with too many things. Sometime might have to give.

Don’t make premature decisions. This is a common pitfall I’ve seen too many times. Someone experiences a few good months of business and automatically thinks they’ve made it big. Wrong. You really need time to figure things out and ensure success. As much as you want to quit your job, don’t do it prematurely. Take the necessary precautions.

Ask for help. Honey there’s nothing wrong with asking friends and family to give you a hand. Perhaps someone can watch your children for a few hours so you can spend a little time working on your business plan. An extra pair of hands is also needed for stuffing mailers and shipping off packages. Just make sure you ask nicely and don’t assume folks will drop their daily demands to come to your aid.

Set manageable goals. The road to being an entrepreneur is a marathon, not a sprint. Enjoy the journey. It’s okay if you need to stretch your goals because you’re swamped with work. Sometimes trying to do too much can be counterproductive and cause unnecessary burnout. Stop trying to light the candle at both ends. Simply do what you can when you’re able.

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