People always seem to be surprised when I tell them I have a 30-hour-a-week job in addition to running my own business.
For the most part, the people at my "real" job think that my Etsy shop is a hobby.. if they even know I have an Etsy shop at all. Honestly, most of them just think I go home and take a nap every day. Um, I wish.
The people who know me on the internet probably think all I do is sell on Etsy, go to Disney World eighteen times a year, and take pictures of my Starbucks cups to post on Instagram. Um, I wish.
And when they find out that neither of those misconceptions is true, the most asked question is.. "But wait. How do you have enough time to do both?"
Let's just get one thing clear. I'm not Superwoman. In school, I was never the best time manager. That 10 page paper always got done the night before it was due. That exam always got studied for at 5am the day of the test. Yeah, I have the same amount of time in the day as Beyonce. The difference is, apparently, I like to live dangerously. (That's a joke.)
A decade later, I still don't have it all figured out. But I also know that time isn't something you can create. Instead, time is something you can choose not to waste. I'll say that again..
"TIME ISN'T SOMETHING YOU CAN CREATE. INSTEAD, TIME IS SOMETHING YOU CAN CHOOSE NOT TO WASTE."
1. It's not that you don't have enough time.
Instead, more often than not, you're just not using it effectively. Is that game you're playing on your phone going to make you any money? Um, sorry to break it to you, but no, it's not. And before you go thinking I never get sucked into this trap.. yeah, I'm not even gonna pretend I'm innocent. That Disney Emoji game is addicting, y'all. Can you use that time to write an item description? What about coming up with 5 new tags you could use on your listings? Answering a convo via the Sell on Etsy app on your phone?
Do a little experiment. Write down everything you do in a day and the time it takes you to do it. I'm willing to bet that when you really break it down, you can find at least an hour or two a day that you could spend on your biz instead.
2. Set clear goals for a finite amount of time.
I've always kept a running to-do list in a black notebook that I carry around with me at all times. Sometimes the list could be up to 2-3 pages long, because it encompassed every single aspect of my life. Crossing those items off gave me such a feeling of accomplishment, but the list seemed to grow exponentially with every passing day. At one point last year, it got so messy that I decided to copy over the undone tasks to a new page and start fresh. Here's what I realized. Some of those undone tasks were 6-8 months old. (SHOCKED FACE EMOJI)
So I changed my methods. I got all of those tasks cleared out, and started making daily "must lists". They're sometimes made anywhere from a day up to a week in advance and they're way less overwhelming than those 2-3 page to-dos. It has helped me focus in on exactly what needs to be done, and it gives me a hard deadline for doing it. It's one thing to write "update tags for Father's Day" on your 2-3 page list where it gets lost. It's another to write it on your "Monday Musts" list, and not allow yourself to get distracted by the 234098345 other things that you brain dumped last week.
3. Don't try to be everywhere.
There are way too many social media apps. Yeah, that's right.. a millennial just said that. Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, Pinterest, Instagram, LinkedIn, Tumblr. OH EM GEE. Trust me, if you're spending all of your time doing social media instead of doing what you actually do, then you're doing it wrong.
My advice? Choose one or two platforms that you love, learn them inside and out, and spend your time promoting your wares there. My personal faves are Instagram and Facebook (specifically, my Facebook group - the shophappy society).
Think you don't have enough time to start your own Etsy biz? Think again! Grab my FREE guide that shows you 3 super simple steps to opening up shop - and you can get it done in less than 30 minutes per day!