So you want to build a coaching practice? Make a greater contribution to the world? Own a flexible business that you love? That’s great.
But one thing stands in your way.
As in, you don’t have any.
You’re working a full-time job. You serve in the church. The kids have out-of-town soccer games every weekend, and you’d occasionally like to see your spouse without having to wear a nametag so they’ll remember your name.
How do you find time you don’t have to build a business that yields more time?
I’ll be honest with you. It’s not easy. It takes trade-offs. Trade-offs that none of us really want to make.
But, it can be done. Hundreds of coaches around the world do it every day. With some discipline and creative thinking, it really is possible to carve out the time you need to create a job and life you love.
Choose one or more of the14 ways below to start moving towards your new life today.
14 Creative Ways to Carve Out Time
- Find overlap with things you already do — Engage in activities that meet a current need while also moving you closer to the life you want. For example, if your niche is helping college students find their purpose and you want to serve in your church, volunteer to work with the college group.
- Multi-task — The more you know, the smarter you’ll work. While doing mindless but necessary tasks such as mowing the lawn, driving, cleaning, etc. listen to relevant podcasts and books on tape. A little bit of learning saves a whole lot of time.
- Pay someone to do repetitive tasks — Are you using your valuable networking, marketing, or coaching time doing data entry or other repetitive tasks? Hire a virtual assistant or willing teenager to assume these chores so you can pour your time into revenue—generating activities.
- Wake up an hour earlier — Morning is the quietest time of day and subject to the fewest interruptions. This is an ideal time to focus on your business.
- Stay up an hour late — Are you a night owl? Great. Take one hour for business-building activities each evening after your family goes to bed.
- Replace TV — Turning on the TV is easy. Mindless. It feels like a reward after a long hard day, but not at the expense of building a truly rewarding life. If you know your willpower will be low at the end of the day, set yourself up for success by taking the batteries out of the remote control. Once you’re up and moving towards the TV, you’ll find it almost as easy to move to your computer instead.
- Use your lunch hour — Whether you stay at your desk, go to a coffee shop or move to your car, working over your lunch hour is an easy way to gain an hour a day for business—building without sacrificing time with family and friends.
- Set aside Saturday mornings — For many, Saturday mornings are the easiest place to carve out time. While your family sleeps in, you can work on your business and they will never even know.
- Switch from full-time to part-time job — There will probably come a point in your business building when you have enough coaching business to almost replace your full-time income. Almost but not quite. It’s at this point that many coaches leave their full-time employment and take a part-time job to fill the gap until coaching is their only gig.
- Use one or two evenings a week — Make business building part of your weekly routine. The first few weeks that you set aside a Tuesday evening to write or network, both you and your family will feel the pinch. But before long, it will become a part of your regular rhythm and worth every minute you spend.
- Give up another scheduled commitment and use that time — While it’s hard to tell someone you can no longer help with their project or serve on their committee, this is usually the best way to build your ideal future. If God is calling you to build your coaching business, then He’s probably calling you to stop doing something else. After all, He knows you’re only human.
- Go into work early — Being in a work setting before others arrive often provides the perfect environment for you to double down and focus on your own goals.
- Maximize your commute — Driving to and from work may offer the perfect time to touch base with key contacts by phone.
- Dedicate one whole weekend a month — I completed my Bachelor’s Degree as an adult in a non-traditional program that met one night a week and one weekend a month. This combination provided just the right mix of intensity and breathing room so that I could make measurable progress in a manageable format. Try setting up a similar schedule for yourself.
However you choose to do it, you can make time for what matters most. And with consistency, commitment, and creativity, you’ll soon be able to join the thousands of other Christian coaches who impact the world while enjoying a lifestyle they love.