How To Moonlight Like A Champ
Recent surveys have shown that a majority of people aren’t really engaged with their jobs. Ours is a time of work being associated with low enthusiasm and bare-minimum commitment. I’m sure you’ve come across people who are waiting for the clock to strike 5 P.M. from the moment they set foot in the office at 9 A.M.
Maybe you’ve even caught yourself watching the clock every now and then. As you sit at your desk, daydreaming about a better life filled with more fulfilling work, you might be part of the 70% of the population that doesn’t feel completely invested in their work.
So, if you’ve considered starting your own business because your day job simply isn’t working out for you for one reason or another, you’ve probably asked yourself the question.
How do I get from my current life with my day job to an existence where I can work on my passion?
The key is moonlighting.
It might sound difficult or even impossible right now. Maybe you’re already trying to work on your own project but it’s not going as well as you would like...don’t lose hope. History is replete with examples of people who moonlighted their way to success and great achievements. Let us use their example to lay out how you can moonlight like an absolute champ and create a better life for yourself.
1. You’ve got plenty of spare time.
One of the biggest misconceptions about working a day job is that it leaves you with too little time to pursue anything meaningful during the rest of the day. Here’s the average day, laid out in terms of the hours you spend doing each activity.
Sleep: 8 Hours
Work: 8 Hours
Commute: 1 Hour
Total: 17 Hours
That still leaves you 7 whole hours every day! 7 hours is more than enough time to work on a separate project that you want to accomplish. Plus, you also have the weekends!
Endless internet browsing and distracting yourself with TV shows or movies can make it feel like the day goes by without you having the time to do anything else. If you’re really determined to make this work, you should use the time you have to build something better.
Two of the greatest authors of our times – F. Scott Fitzgerald and William Faulkner – worked on their novels while they were working a full-time job. Fitzgerald managed to write ‘This Side of Paradise’ while he was serving in the army during WWI. Faulkner worked a 12 hour shift and still managed to write ‘As I Lay Dying’ in 47 days.
2. Leverage each unit of time you have to its maximum potential.
When you say “I’ve worked for 8 hours today”, have you really been working for 8 hours?
Or did you work for a couple of hours and spend the rest of the time procrastinating, browsing Reddit and other websites or taking coffee breaks?
Most of us are too distracted, even when we’re supposedly working.
Everyone gets the same 24 hours each day. The key to maximizing this time is to FOCUS and be present with your work. When you sit down to work on your business or blog after your day shift, clear away any potential distractions. Put your phone on silent mode and close every other tab or social media website you have open on your laptop.
When you’re working, work. Don’t do it half-heartedly.
Anthony Trollope was one of the most prolific and respected authors in his day. He was employed full-time as a postal surveyor for 8 years. During these years, he turned out more than a dozen books and several short stories and articles. He also found time for hunting every week and maintained an active social life. He even found time to travel.
His secret? He established a schedule for himself – he would be at his table at 5.30 AM every morning, without fail. No exceptions, no excuses.
3. Appreciate your day job and use it as a learning experience.
When you’re working on your business while you’re working a day job, it is easy to think that your day job is holding you back. If only you had more time in the day, you could truly turn your business into something magical. Right?
Well, not quite.
The fallacy in thinking your day job is holding you back is that it is a self-reinforcing belief. You’ve already decided that your day job is holding you back, so every minor annoyance at your company becomes amplified. You start to lose more and more interest and mentally check out of your day job long before you need to.
Some of the most successful people of our time have talked about the benefits of having a day job. By looking at it as a learning experience, these people were able to enjoy their day jobs much more. T.S. Eliot, for example, worked several long shifts at a bank while he was making his way as a poet. Eliot found that the stable income provided by his day job allowed him to not worry about his financial needs, leaving him free to focus on his writing. Albert Einstein praised his day job as a patent examiner for allowing him to learn and credited it for spawning some of his best ideas.
4. Be patient.
Your side-project might be doing decently well and have some growth potential, but you have to give it time. You don’t have to earn a million dollars the month after you start working on your business.
Most businesses don’t turn profitable for several months. Other might take years. The difference between people who successfully navigate these scenarios to create thriving businesses and the ones who don’t is patience. Successful businessmen realize that ideas and companies need time to grow and build a market.
If you’re moonlighting, tell yourself this at every possible opportunity – Be patient!
It took Kodak founder George Eastman 4 years since the time he started experimenting with and learning about photography to the time he was finally able to quit his day job. Nike Founder Phil Knight took even longer – 7 years – before he was able to finally draw a salary from his company.
5. Systematically eliminate your excuses.
We’ve already talked about the two major problems that moonlighting supposedly comes with – having a day job and not having enough time – and explored why both of those aren’t real problems at all. They’re just excuses.
Listen, if you want to convince yourself that your life is too hard and it makes perfect sense for you not to pursue your dreams, go right ahead. No one will stop you.
But, if you want a better life, you need to stop making excuses or feeling sorry for yourself. Whether you’re old or young or single or married, there’s always a way.
If you’re too tired after you come back from your day job, work on your business by waking up an hour or two earlier in the morning.
If you have a long commute, find aspects of your business you can work on while you’re traveling.
If Stephen King managed to write Carrie while having a day job, being married, being a father to two children, and living in a trailer, you don’t have any excuses.
When you’re moonlighting, you need to optimize your workflow in every way possible. With Dubsado, you can automate almost all aspects of your client management – invoices, follow-ups, scheduling – you name it. When you’re using Dubsado, you can rest easy knowing that a large part of your busy work is automated, so you can focus on building a better life.
The path to greatness is littered with difficulties. These difficulties are the crucible that forges achievers and wildly successful people. Even if you’re working a day job right now, we’ve talked about how to moonlight like a champ and change your life situation.
Will you rise up to the challenge?
You CAN do it,