"How do you have time to do that?"
This is the top question I get asked, and for good reason. People who know me know for over 15 years I've been in a full time position that surpasses a 40 hour work week. Plus, for six years I've also coached high school football. Plus, for three years I've been writing on this blog multiple times a week. Plus, for two years, I've also been trying to develop The Factory.
So, at this point I am prepared for the question and the answer is simple,
"I don't watch much TV."
Even now, it's a 11:15pm and most people I know are asleep or watching TV as they lay in bed. Actually, I'm the only one up in the house at this point. And yes, I have football practice at 6am, but I have a creative itch that has to be scratched. Maybe it's a entrepreneurial itch? Whatever label we put on it I just know it needs an outlet. So, as most sleep, I write. Or I read. Or I stand over my lathe and make a potential product to sell. Or I work on a site I am building for a client. Or I watch YouTube tutorials on how to make something else. Or I build something.
You see, everything comes at a cost. And to do something entrepreneurial in your free time you have to give it just that - time. For you to go after something that's been lodged inside your soul and you know you have to go do something about it, there will be a cost for you just like there is a cost for me.
Here are some things I know I give up in order to gain this creative outlet:
1. TV - More than anything, this is the biggest time suck for want to be entrepreneurs. I've talked with so many people who have big dreams but their TV is their greatest enemy. Binge watching is killing dreams. And we even live in a world of "On Demand" television but we don't act like we are the ones in control.
2. Comfortableness - From day one it was really uncomfortable to share my thoughts online. But like many things, the more you do it the more comfortable you become with it. I watch lots of people start blogs and they fall in love with their early analytics - they see so many views. But eventually, even your mom stops reading and commenting on your blog and then what? To me, this is a different level of uncomfortableness. It's easy to write in the beginning even though there is some fear involved but it's significantly harder when hanging out with friends sounds more interesting than staying home and writing, wondering if these same friends will even read your next post. At some point, you have to add more value beyond your family or friends if you really want to build something.
3. The safety of being normal - Not everyone does this. And as a matter of fact, some people don't believe their unique voice has value. These folks don't see a point in developing a platform, instead they believe in assigned voices. Meaning, the job they've been placed in defines the reach of their voice. So, these folks believe being a change agent is related to a title or position. But you and I don't think that way. We are out to find our unique voice and we do that by shipping our thoughts, which means we put our thoughts out there for others to read, listen too, or watch. This means you're anything but normal.
Every entrepreneur has to know what taking action will cost them and even more importantly, every entrepreneur should have a list of what they are not willing to give up. Knowing the difference between the two will help you go the distance when attempting to start something in your free time. You're looking to turn wasted time into productive time and that switch could add up in significant impact as well as compensation.