How to balance multiple jobs

Be honest with yourself and what you can and can’t handle Click To Tweet

These days, side hustles are the new hobbies and working more than one job is pretty much expected. Between paying off student loans and getting the rent check in on time, it’s no wonder more working class people leave their 9-5’s and clock in for a 5-9 right after.

Although working those long hours can be vigorous, it’s commendable. One trait that highly successful people share is that they’re persistent, meaning grind until your goals are reached by any means. Oprah didn’t become Oprah by showing up to work and then kicking her feet up afterward, so why should you?

Stick to a schedule

Since your time is now limited and especially precious, every minute counts. Staying on schedule will make your tasks flow more easily and relieve you of the stress of forgetting to complete something.

Although it seems obvious, keeping a calendar with your tasks detailed by day will be extremely helpful. Keep your calendar in a place where you are productive and visit often such as your desk.

Prioritize

If you’re busy at job 1 planning an annual fundraiser, it’s probably not the best time to pick up an extra shift at job 2. Be honest with yourself and what you can and can’t handle.

Staying on schedule will make your tasks flow more easily Click To Tweet

Be realistic with your time

Stretching yourself too thin isn’t beneficial if you work a full-time job and have clients to please for your personal business. Therefore, be realistic and don’t sacrifice sleep in the meantime.

Know when it’s time to throw in the towel

Letting something go doesn’t mean you quit, it means you’re changing strategy. When one job doesn’t fit your lifestyle don’t be afraid to move on.

Be honest with your employers

By not being upfront with your employers about other jobs, you welcome easy opportunities to cause a rift in the workplace. Chances are, after being open with your boss they’ll understand and be receptive to why you’re drinking 3-4 cups of coffee a day.

Be realistic and don’t sacrifice sleep in the meantime Click To Tweet

How to plan a productive day with multiple hustles

Wake up on time

Every second counts when you’re attempting to balance multiple gigs. This means the snooze button is no longer an option. Set your day up where every moment is valuable.

Meditate/Set your intentions

Whether you do this in the morning or before you go to bed, it’s important to take time to centre yourself and stay focused in the midst of being busy.

There are several apps that make meditation easy whether you’re at home, on your lunch break, or on the train home. Both Simple Habit and Headspace provide users with free customizable opportunities to wind down with meditations ranging from 5 minutes to half an hour.

Make your lunch productive

Although it’s important to take a break during your lunch time, if your mind has been focused on multiple projects, take your lunch to hash out your thoughts or get some work done. Also, make sure you’re eating a healthy lunch that will give you energy.

Keep a notebook throughout your day

You know that thought that pops into your head about job 2 while your at job 1? The same thought you forget about once you actually get to job 2 and now it’s driving you crazy? Avoid the hustler haze and carry a notebook to write down your random thoughts throughout the day.

Instead of getting flustered with everything you need to get done, plan out each task one by one Click To Tweet

Schedule your post-work personal tasks

It can be overwhelming working several jobs and still having to be concerned with making dinner, washing your hair, or cleaning the bathroom. Instead of getting flustered with everything you need to get done, plan out each task one by one.

Wind down

Always take time to yourself. Whether it’s having a glass of wine, watching an episode of your favorite show, or taking a nice bath. It’s crucial to maintain your sanity and mental health while you’re busy.

Practice Gratitude

Writing down everything you’re thankful for will ground you and put everything in perspective especially if you’ve had a bad day. When you visualize what you’re grateful for you’re able to appreciate everything you have and stay motivated while you grind.

Get a good night’s sleep

You can only be so productive without a healthy amount of sleep. It’s a fact!

Laying the foundations of your business while holding down your day job

This been the hardest undertaking of our lives thus far, but also the most rewarding Click To Tweet

In August 2016, my friend and I took the plunge and decided to launch our very own social enterprise. Born out of many long conversations and brainstorming sessions, we finally settled on creating an organization that could help address some of the challenges Nigerian girls are facing stress-induced their educational development. That was how Give Girls A Chance came about.

We were giddy with excitement as we embarked on the process of registering the organization and launching a fundraising campaign. In January 2017, we had raised enough money to sponsor the first group of girls in the program with full scholarships including tuition, fees, books, and uniforms. We also recruited five amazing volunteers to serve as mentors through our dedicated mentoring program. With all of this in place, we set to work running the organization like the bad-ass boss ladies we are.

Half a year later, we can honestly say that this been the hardest undertaking of our lives thus far, but also the most rewarding thing we have ever done. Mind you we both decided to do this right at the moment when our other professional careers were taking off. I had just joined the UN in August and was posted to Zambia. My partner Hauwa was wrapping up her youth service and about to start working as a full-time doctor.

But this idea was something that had been on both of our minds for a long time and we did not want to wait any longer. We are both deeply passionate about public service and believe that it is our duty to contribute to the development of Nigeria. What better way to do that than by training up the next generation of women and future leaders of our country? So, we took the plunge, and for better or worse, we have survived to talk about it.

For every success that we have had, we have had twice as many failures and faced countless roadblocks. When it comes to laying the foundations for your businesses while holding down your day job, here are some of the experiences we’ve had and advice we would like to share with the readers.

Say goodbye to sleep…at least for the time being

Before you take this flirtationship any further, imagining the idea of starting a side hustle, business or organization while keeping your day job and still managing to get 8 hours of sleep, stay fit and avoid stress-induced acne, let me stop you right there.

Unless you are Wonder Woman (and who knows some of you very well may be), you should know now that you’re going to have to make a choice between bringing your business to life or getting the daily recommended 8 hours of sleep. I can’t tell you how many sleepless nights we’ve had and how many things we’ve had to miss out on because we choose to invest our waking hours and our resources into growing our organization.

There is so much research, planning, and coordination required to grow a business and if you have to do this alongside a job that demands the 8 hours of the day when most people are typically productive, it simply means you’re going to have to cut into your sleep and leisure time to stay on top of everything.

The good news is that the joy of seeing your idea come to life is unparalleled. Nothing beats that feeling of satisfaction and accomplishment you will have when you start to hit your targets. And if all it takes is skimping on sleep every now and then, that’s a small price to pay, right? You can always make it up later when your name is up in flashing lights and you’re rolling deep in that moolah.

You’re going to have to make a choice between bringing your business to life or sleeping Click To Tweet

Budget, budget, budget

I grew up with a banker for a father and he tried his best to instill in me the spirit of budgeting and saving. But I like shiny things too much and I’m always ready to take on the challenge of seeing how much stuff I can get for all the money in my account.

I am so thankful that Hauwa is in charge of the finances for Give Girls A Chance. We managed to raise a significant amount of money when we first launched and true to form I wanted to go big and sponsor as many girls as we could but Hauwa talked sense into me. We decided to start with 11 girls, put some money into savings so we could pay for events and plan for the future.

We knew that it would not be cool if we sponsored 200 girls for one semester or two, but then had no money to keep on going. The girls would end up right back where they started, having to drop out of school because they could not afford to go. Instead, we decided to take things step by step, prudently accounting for every kobo and making sure we were getting the best return on our investments.

As the new school year approaches, we are thrilled as we can now comfortably take on more girls for an extended period of time. My advice is to use the resources you have wisely and always have some money left in the bank.

Use the resources you have wisely and always have some money left in the bank Click To Tweet

Be consistent

Because we both have full-time jobs, the only times we are able to work on Give Girls A Chance related activities are in the evenings and on weekends. In fact, that’s not true. We end up replying to emails, texts, and requests during our lunch breaks at work too!

Saturday mornings at 9 AM are set in stone for our weekly check-in meetings and Sundays at 8 PM we check in with our strategic support team. Without fail, every week. Yes, this means even when one of us is on vacation in Zimbabwe or busy with bridesmaid’s duties at a friend’s wedding, we still make time to check in and get work done.

From the beginning, we also agreed that even though we had to start small, with a limited budget and resources, we would always strive for consistency. This means that we have set the organization’s calendar to run a major event or campaign every month. It’s been hard, but we have followed through on that promise.

Slowly but surely, we are building our presence and making a name for ourselves in the NGO space in Nigeria and people are starting to take notice.

Check-in meetings over the weekend? That's the life when you're running your enterprise & work full-time Click To Tweet

Ask for help

If you plan to grow a business successfully from scratch, you’re going to have to get very comfortable saying the word, please. From the beginning, Hawua and I were clear about what our strengths were and what things needed to get done that we were not capable of doing ourselves.

We knew that if we were clear on what our vision was, along the way, we were bound to run into people who believed in our vision as well, or at the very least believed in us. These people would be willing to lend us their time or money to show their commitment.

We got my cousin to build our website for free (shout out to Urey Onuoha), we got help from our parents and friends as we drafted and refined our strategy, our friends and family were also the first to contribute substantially to funding the organization.

At the SheHive in Joburg last year, I met the amazing Yetunde Dada who heads her own social enterprise CRNCH. CRNCH has been instrumental in helping us get our strategy right, making our grant proposals look amazing and spending hours brainstorming and working with us on everything from how to fundraise to how to make our mentoring program more effective. All of this for free and in their spare time.

So my advice is to network like crazy and don’t be afraid to go out on a limb and ask people for help even before you are able to afford them.

Plan for your growth so you’re not surprised when it happens

Having a plan from the beginning will help you avoid a lot of confusion further down the line. A good question to consider is, “Do I want this to remain a side hustle or do I eventually want to get this business to the point where I can quit my day job and focus all my attention on this?”.

Another question could be, “Do I want to keep my business local, take it nationwide or global?” For Give Girls A Chance our vision is to grow the organization to the point where it becomes a major player in terms of work being done at the intersection of educational development and women/girls issues in Nigeria.

We want to have a presence nationwide, basically, anywhere there are large groups of out-of-school children we want to be active there. So while we are currently focused on our activities in Abuja, and limited by bandwidth and resources, we are always on the lookout for new opportunities and partnerships.

We are exploring diverse fundraising streams and we are learning from best practices globally on how to structure and deliver educational development practices. We may be small but we are agile and easily adaptable. The question is not will we grow but rather how soon?

If you plan to grow a business from scratch, get very comfortable saying the word, please Click To Tweet

Never lose sight of your vision

There are going to be many days where you will look and think to yourself, but why am I killing myself softly with all this wahala. After all, I have a daytime job to fall back on so why not just focus on that?

You have to be ready for those days. At the beginning of the year, we compiled a list of the top 10 goals we wanted to achieve through Give Girls A Chance and I printed and stuck those to my dream board so I am reminded every morning of what we are doing and why I must remain committed.

The cause is also one that is dear to my heart, helping other girls succeed and make the most out of their lives. So at the end of the day even if GGAC were to only change one girl’s life, that would still have made all the difference for me.

What is that one thing fanning the flames of passion in your heart? What is it about this idea, business or organization that you know you must achieve and won’t stop until you do? Remind yourself of that as often as possible, especially when the going gets tough. It will help you keep you on track.

These are just a few of the things that we have learned along the way that we hope could serve as encouragement and motivation to other women who may be thinking of embarking on the same journey and establishing their own businesses or organizations.

Wherever you are in the process, we would love to hear from you and hear your thoughts. What have you learned from starting a business while keeping your daytime job that you would like to share with us and with the other readers?

SLA’s Career Strategy Guide

career strategy guide

Heard about a career strategy but not sure how to go about it?

We’ve talked about this before. How can  you not have a career strategy? SLA contributor Tamaan Wilkinson, schooled us on the importance of having a career strategy. You need to know off heart the steps that you’ll be taking to become the boss of your career.

This new guide will help you strategically plan and achieve your career goals.

Topics this guide will cover:

  • Setting your career vision
  • Determining the skills you need for your career
  • What to do if you don’t know what your career goals are

It’s all because, we want this to be you:

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Complete with worksheets, space for reviews and lots of ideas for helping you get that career that you’ll love, this guide is must have for all women who want to be #MotherlandMogul bosses.


Getting access to this guide is easy: just fill out the form below to join our community and get access to this guide, as well as AWESOME weekly content.

Holding on to your business, your day job and your sanity

your business your day job and your sanity

Itching to be an entrepreneur but not ready to give up your day job?

Lots of people begin their businesses as a side hustle. It definitely makes sense. When you first start your venture might not be the time to leave your full time job. Or you are still learning from and enjoying your day job. And let’s be honest, it pays the bills and entrepreneurship is a huge risk.

Whatever your reason may be for doing it, juggling your day job and a business is hard. But it’s not impossible. This guide will teach you the essentials you need to hold on to both AND keep your sanity.

Topics this guide will cover:

  • Deciding if this is the right choice for you
  • How to stay accountable to yourself and your new business
  • How to not burn out
  • Staying motivated through rough times

Don’t let this be you:

your business your day job and your sanity

Complete with worksheets and lots of ideas for helping you manage your time and energy, this guide is a can’t miss for anyone trying to juggle it all.


Getting access to this guide is easy: just fill out the form below to join our community and get access to this guide, as well as AWESOME weekly content.