Is working less and making more a real-life thing? Or is it just another internet myth?
Honestly, for a long time, I thought that there would be no way I could possibly do that. I’d always heard that hustle was the way to get where you wanted to go and that it was always about hustle.
But over time, as I grew my business and learned a lot more about how to run a business, I eventually learned that the “working less and making more” sentiment is 100% attainable. In fact, after almost eight years in business, I’m only working a few days a week.
How so, you ask? And what does that look like? I’m going to show you right here — keep on scrolling!
In those early days of business, I didn’t take much time off. So when I started treating myself to a legit lunch break on Friday afternoons, I learned that to make the most of my time, I need some breaks in the mix.
And I’m not talking about a sorting-through-emails-at-my-desk-while-eating kind of lunch break. I actually took myself out to a restaurant and sat down with no work obligations. It was nice to have some time to myself where I could enjoy good food and some quiet in my noggin.
Over time, I realized that one lunch break a week isn’t enough of a break when you’re running a business — you need some legit time off, and consistently! So, those lunch breaks became a whole afternoon on Friday, and eventually, the entire day.
I haven’t looked back since.
Pretty soon my Friday afternoons turned into an additional day of the week off. Why? Because a girl’s gotta run her errands! I mean…have you ever noticed that there’s no time on the weekend for both relaxing and doing that boring adult stuff — like grocery shopping and filing your taxes?
Or that it’s always a chore to take time off to go to the doctor or dentist?
Taking an extra day off during the week helped me make sure I was able to do this all without it scope-creeping into my time off. I knew I had one dedicated day each week to do chores and run errands, and could better plan ahead for appointments.
Part of the reason I never felt like I was able to take time off was because I just had too much on my plate. If I took an afternoon off, how would emails get written? Where would I find the time to plan out projects? It was extremely difficult to enjoy that off time too because there was always so much worry in the back of my mind.
But with outsourcing, I was able to take a SIGNIFICANT amount of work off my plate that not only gave me more freedom to be the business owner (and not the accountant, ops manager, copywriter, etc.), but to let me have some time to breathe.
For a while, I felt so guilty about taking time off. I started to feel like I wasn’t doing enough, or that I would fall behind because of a few hours.
But the truth is, as an entrepreneur you need white space, because it gives you room to create (even if you don’t consider yourself traditionally creative!), brainstorm new ideas, and add some distance between you and your biz.
Without that time, you’re stuck staring at your computer 24/7 (or making products…or doing your 1:1 services…whatever the thing may be for you). But to grow, you have to have some time to think about growing, and take the time to work on your biz.
And it wasn’t until I started taking that time off that I realized it was when I was able to do that. Ideas would come to me at random times, while out running errands especially, and I loved it! Managing my schedule like this has seriously changed the game for me.
Another concern many folks have when thinking about entrepreneurship is personal life. Sure, I talked about ways to take time off and more whitespace into your day, but a few extra hours to breathe is hardly what I’d call a personal life — that’s just the essentials, like sleep!
If you’re a new business owner, or a business owner wondering if it’s going to be all work no play for the rest of your life…check out the video below! I get real about what having a “personal life” as an entrepreneur is really like.
(P.S., and this may be a bit of a spoiler, but, I added air quotes because personal life is subjective and totally up to you! Just FYI.)