Week 1 of Self Employment: 4 Big Takeaways
Apr 13

Have you ever wanted to build your own dream? If you are like me, it’s always been a dream to be self-employed. We're going to talk through a few key takeaways learned during the first week of self-employment. 

In this post, we’re going to talk through a few of the things I’ve learned during the first week of building my own dream. Even if you want to someday try this entrepreneurship thing out and build your own dream, I encourage you to read on. The preparation will not go to waste, even if you aren’t ready to do it right away. Hopefully you can find a few tips in this post that will help you if you ever decided to make the leap in your future!

LESSON ONE 

The most surprising thing about working for myself full-time is that TIME is flying by faster than ever.

The days pass extremely fast! I know what you may be thinking. I don’t just sit at home all day and sip coffee and listen to good music on Spotify.

The old saying of “time flies when you’re having fun” may apply here – because I love it!

Time is one of the biggest assets in self-employment but it’s also the biggest enemy

As an entrepreneur trying to build my own dream, it feels like there is so much to do and so little time! All the time management I learned in my professional career has come in handy.

Prioritization is a whole post on it’s own, so if you are interested in learning how I prioritize as a new entrepreneur – please let me know in the comments below!

Takeaway: time is a non-renewable resource. Find ways to maximize it. Don’t waste it.

LESSON TWO

Before I did this myself, all the self-employed people I knew seemed to have the perfect life! Don’t have to put up with terrible bosses, get to build their own dream, and make their own schedule.

While all those things are true, what you see vs what you get at this point in my journey are not one in the same!

What I mean by that is, there is a lot of work to do and it’s just me! This may change at some point in the future but I am the safety net. That thought alone can be heavy and keep me up at night thinking about strategy and how I am going to pull this off.

Yes, I do set my own schedule but that doesn’t change how hard I must work to be successful. Never mind the fact that I want to work on it all the time because I love it so much!

From setting up email responders, to planning a social media strategy, to building this website and blogging – it’s all a been a thrill!

Being my own boss is great! I get to prioritize what I see as important.

I love not living under a rock of someone else’s priorities. Additionally, being able to create my own working environment has been refreshing.

If you have ever worked in a place that is toxic and draining you will not understand how valuable getting out of there is until you do it.

Your mind and body are your number one assets as an entrepreneur! Protect the assets.

Remember, there is no perfect life anyways. All the fantasizing about what all the famous bloggers do every day isn’t healthy. Keep your mind set on what you want to accomplish and go after it as hard and fast as you can.

Takeaway: nobody has the perfect life. You are your biggest asset as an entrepreneur. Foster a healthy work environment to maximize your output.

LESSON THREE

It seems that I’ve been planning this escape all my life. The escape from the 9-5 that is. Don’t get me wrong, working a 9-5 is not a bad idea at all. In many cases, it can help you prepare for what’s coming by gaining skills, saving money, and making connections.

As I mentioned earlier, the things I’ve learned in my professional career have been useful.

Preparing early on will help you later. What I mean by that is, gather the tools and skills that you will need before you branch out on your own.

Do the up-front learning BEFORE you launch out to become self-employed so that when you decide to launch your dream, you don’t have to learn it as you are creating.

Start working on your dream while you quit before you quit your day job.

This will give valuable time back to your creation process and really allow you to be creative and work on what really matters, your business.

Learning is valuable as an entrepreneur but action is king.

What does this mean practically? It means that if you come across a tool or article you know will serve you later in your journey, bookmark it on your computer.

If you know that a skill will be useful to you later that you have a chance to use in your day job, ask your boss to take on that project.

If you know that your future self-employed (self) will need to know something, practice it now!

Takeaway: don’t wait to build your dream until you’re ready. Start now. Gain the skills you know you will need now. Action is king.

LESSON FOUR

Absolute belief. Passion. Hustle.

I am tempted to leave it at that because I think those words speak most of what I want to say, but I’ll expand.

You must believe in what you are doing. You will have moments that are hard but your why must be bigger than that small fleeting moment.

If you are not passionate about something, don’t try to build your dream on it. That’s silly. Wait awhile and find something that you could really see yourself doing.

It can be helpful to plan backwards in this scenario. Start by thinking what your ideal day looks like. What do you want to do when you wake up? Step by step hour by hour, line everything out.

Then reverse engineer that day into your actual life over time and fill it with things that you know make you come alive.

Last thing I’ll mention is on hustling. While I do feel more mentally engaged than ever, it comes at a price.

Thinking about the business is a never-ending process. The to-do’s and dream lists can literally go on forever. I’ve learned this first week that I must find a time to shut that off to re-charge. Basically, I can’t work 24/7 but I can hustle hard if I get the rest I need.

This is most important because when it’s time to hustle, I can be sure that I am at the top of my game.

While I have only been working for myself for a week now, I absolutely love it. It is a dream come true in many ways. There are pros and cons to this journey that I’ve decided to go on but I wouldn’t trade it for anything.

The thing that keeps coming back to mind is that when things get tough in life, no matter what you are facing.

Your WHY must be bigger than the problem you are facing. Write your WHY down somewhere you can see it everyday.

At a time when entrepreneurship is a complete buzzword, the truth is that working for yourself is both exhilarating and terrifying. That’s what makes it so fun!

Takeaway: work hard, rest hard. Your WHY will get you through, write it down. Have absolute belief in yourself and your dream.

What about you? Are you self-employed? Have you ever wanted to pursue your dream hustle and go for it full time? Share your thoughts and comments below. We read all responses and your feedback will help us know what to share with you next time!

If you haven't read our full story about why we started this site, check our our Meet Zack & Jen page to learn more! 

While you're reading.... Check out our full story about how we paid off $50,000 in debt in less than one year! ​

Cheers!

Zack & Jen

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