Did you know that 34% of Americans have a side hustle? (Zapier)
And I wouldn’t be surprised to see that number increase over the next several years.
But what seems to get in the way of most people is learning how to balance work and a side hustle.
Most of us work 40 hours a week and leave at the end of each day feeling a bit drained and ready to relax.
But in the world of side hustling, you have to find that extra energy to keep pushing forward to get that extra income.
My hope is that these 5 tips for how to balance work and your side hustle will help you maintain your sanity while not losing your focus and passion for everything going on in your life. I know you’re busy and this is going to be a challenge, but with the right time management and prioritization, I know that you’ll be able to do this!
5 Tips for How to Balance Work and Your Side Hustle
1. Take Advantage of Your Breaks and Lunchtime
While you’re eating your midday meal, you can use this time to refine your side hustle skills, reach out to potential clients, respond to emails, or complete tasks for money. (This last option is one I do regularly because it doesn’t take much time and generates me a few hundred extra dollars a month in side income. Read more in my post 37 Best Side Hustles From Home!)
If you have one hour of breaks every workday, this amounts to about five hours of side hustle time each week!
Just make sure you have a plan for how to spend this time wisely (more on this shortly).
2. Make Sure to Give Yourself Some Time Off
The last thing you want to happen is to experience burnout, which is quite common if you overwork yourself and never set aside “you” time.
Personally, I take one full day off each week.
I’ve found that I’m much more productive during the week when I do this because I feel refreshed and focused.
It’s just like exercising — if you overwork your muscles, they won’t be able to recover properly, and their growth will be impacted.
So don’t skip this step!
Take time to practice self-care, hang out with family and friends, and spend time enjoying everyday life. Your side hustle will be much better off for it.
RELATED: 7 Side Hustle Books You Need to Read
3. Get Really Organized and Automate When Possible
Balancing work and your side hustle requires a great deal of organization, and maybe even some automation.
You’ll want to have a calendar set up that outlines your to-do list for the day so that you stay on track. This can be done via your phone, computer, or even in a planner. Personally, I use all three, but I encourage you to test various methods out and find a system that works for you!
I also recommend setting up separate folders on your computer to keep your side hustle documents. Additionally, you may want to organize your email inbox into categories so that you can easily find invoices, important conversations, and so on.
As for automation, you can schedule social media posts in advance, create email templates to save you time, or even use an app like Evernote to help you quickly arrange your ideas.
4. Set Clear Goals
Setting goals might be the most important tip for how to balance work and your side hustle.
Without goals, you’re not going to know what you’re working toward or what direction you want to go in.
Think about things like:
- The amount of money you want to make each month/quarter/year
- How many clients you want to take on
- How many projects you want to complete
- What benchmarks you need to reach to achieve your long-term goals
Once you have your goals in mind, make a plan for how you’re going to achieve them. Everything you do on a daily basis should be working toward those larger goals.
So, let’s say your goal is to get $5,000 in side income by the end of the year. You’ll want to break down how much money you need to make each month (or day or week if you want to get really granular).
As you create your goals, make sure they’re SMART:
Learn more about SMART goals by clicking here.
5. Develop an Action Plan for Getting Things Done
This is the part where you take your goals and allotted side hustle time to put it into an action plan for success!
Now, everyone’s action plan is going to look different. You may find you do better having a vision board with your goals visually represented whereas others may have plans written on a whiteboard for clear guidance every time they walk into an office.
Whatever your method is, make sure it works with your schedule and focuses on your SMART goals.
I personally like to keep track of things in a planner and create action steps for each day and week to keep me on track toward my monthly and yearly goals. I also know that I need to work around the day I take off every week, so I budget that into my available side hustle time.
This process may take some trial-and-error as you figure out your footing, so don’t get discouraged if things don’t go exactly as planned at first. You’ll get the hang of it the more you do it!
I hope these tips for how to balance work and your side hustle help you achieve success!
Do you have any other words of wisdom to share on this topic? Feel free to share them in the comments below!