Building your dream on the side is hard. You have a day job and a family. You have other responsibilities and the general craziness of life. Finding time to build your dream seems impossible at times.
It’s a dilemma because you don’t have time but if you don’t make the time your dream will never happen. I remember this dilemma clearly as I was building this business.
I worked 50 to 60 hours a week delivering bread. I have a wife and three growing children and I had responsibilities at church. I slept three to five hours a night for twelve years but still dreamed of being a writer.
Despite all the craziness I did find time to write two books, create several products, speak all over the world and build an online business that supports our family.
It might seem like a lot but it wasn’t half as much as I could have accomplished if I was focused. I could have done a lot more and gotten here faster with two major tips.
If you’re chasing a dream on the side you’re going to have to use every minute wisely. With two simple tips you can make your dream happen a lot quicker.
Cut out the distractions
As you’re reading this you’re probably thinking “duh” but as you think that how many tabs do you have open right now? Are your email and social media notifications turned on? Are you getting calls that really aren’t that important?
Every minute is precious and when you use those minutes catering to distractions that’s one less minute you can spend on your dream. Those little distractions are time killers and if you added up the time you would be shocked.
Dan Miller is the multi-millionaire NY Times best-selling author of 48 Days To The Work You Love. Last year he had a challenge to create one new product every month. He created those products and wrote a book. He also reads one book a week. Read that paragraph over again and say WOW!
One thing that I’ve heard Dan say over and over again is that he works in uninterrupted blocks of time. He completely eliminates the distractions, especially the ones I mentioned above. He uses that time to focus and just work.
Can we all be superstars like Dan Miller? 100% YES! You may not get as much accomplished in the same amount of time but you can get more accomplished than you ever thought possible.
I just interviewed Stacy Claffin. She wakes up every day at 4 am and writes until 7 am. During those three hours she cuts out all other distractions. Working without distractions has allowed her to write and release 11 books since November of 2012. Did I mention that she has two kids who she home schools and runs a daycare??
This is how you create rockstar content that grows your audience, changes lives, and brings hope to the world. Social media will come and go but your dream can change your life and give you true freedom.
Look, we all have different things going on in our lives. You may not have huge blocks of time to work on your dream. The point is to use whatever you have and do the best you can.
*One day test* I challenge you for one day to work in an uninterrupted block of time. When you sit down to work on your dream turn everything else off. At the end of that time period see what you’ve accomplished compared to what you normally do. If it works you might want to continue and build until it’s a habit that helps you create and grow your dream!
Focus on what’s most important right now
How many blogs do you read everyday? How many podcasts do you listen to? There’s a ton of information out there and it’s easy to get information overload. As a matter of fact most people starting out or people who haven’t seen progress end up getting information overload.
We want answers and we want our thing to be built better and faster. In an effort to do that we turn to information. Information overload has crippled many a dream and there’s an easy fix: focus on what’s most important right now.
If you’re just starting out your focus should be creating amazing content and building your email list. That’s where your focus should be, not reading an article about affiliate marketing tips. Not listening to a podcast about SEO tactics.
Too often we see something cool an A-Lister did that generated a bunch of money and we want to try it. We download the plugin, we install that widget. We buy that program and in the end it’s a complete waste of time. We spend hours just trying to figure out how to use the thing and that’s precious time that could be used building your audience one person at a time.
That’s where they are at in their journey not where you should try to be. You need to do what’s going to make progress where you are. The thing that always makes progress and actually builds your business is making life-long customers.
That’s the advantage you have when you’re “small”, you can make a personal connection with every new audience member. That personal connection is what makes life-long customers as Derek Halpern talked about.
Don’t run down the rabbit holes. Instead focus on what you need to work on where you are in the journey. Do that and then move on to all those cool things. Realize that in the end good content is what people are looking for. All the fancy plugins and widgets are nice but if the content doesn’t back it up people aren’t coming back. Have you ever gone back to a restaurant that looked good but had yucky food?
Look, you can build an online business that supports your family if you have the right focus, cut out the distractions, and hustle. I can tell you from personal experience that this life is better than you can imagine.
There’s nothing like having the freedom to spend time on the things that are important to you. To live life on your terms, not the systems.
How much time do you get to work on your dream weekly? How productive are you honestly?