Are you spending all your time at your day job dreaming about the day you can run your business from a laptop on the beach? I know what it’s like when you feel that each minute at your 9-5 is keeping you from your dreams. You can actually feel like you’re in a prison and there’s no escape.
I remember when that happened to me at my first 9-5 in in a non-profit agency. Around my second year there, things just started to go downhill. I had a supervisor who wasn’t providing me with the training and leadership skills that I wanted to grow, my work bestie was switched to another office, and the pay was a JOKE (even after I negotiated myself around a $5000 raise which was pretty much unheard of there).
I needed one more year there before I could resign so that I could get the hours I needed to for my license and I could eventually open my own private counseling practice if I wanted (which was one of the only ways that I saw myself actually being able to make the type of salary I dreamed of one day). That last year I really had to learn how to make my day job work for me so that I could benefit while working towards my dream of location and financial freedom.
Here’s how you can make your day job work for you while you’re plotting your exit plan (and stocking up on supplies for your home office is not an option!):
Make money your friend
Let go of the struggle about making money for doing work you don’t love and appreciate every dollar that you bring in – there’s no reason to feel bad about it as you’re earning it. Use this time to save up as much as you can so that you can have a nice cushion for when you go out on your own. Also make sure to pay down all debt that you can during this time so that you have fewer bills when you’re running your business.
Ask for flexibility
Talk to your boss about a flexible work schedule or the opportunity to work from home. Can you do four 10 hour days so you have 1 free weekday to do your own thing? Maybe it’s a possibility to work from home a couple of days a week. If your commute is an hour each way then you’d end up saving 2 hours each of those days that you work from home. Have several possibilities available for when you discuss this with your boss so that there is room for flexibility.
Use this time to learn as much as you can. Are there any courses or trainings you can take that will help you with your business? Pay attention to the leaders who you admire and respect — what are they doing that works and how can you model it? Also, make sure to create a brag list of your accomplishments. Even if you want out of this job, I’m sure there were still a lot of amazing things you did while you worked there and it will give you insight into your strengths.
These are just a few ways that you can make your day job work for you as you get ready to become the boss of your life and create your own business and flexible lifestyle. If you’re still feeling stuck on how to create an exit plan or feel scared that it’s never going to happen, I can help.