#157: Five Trade-Offs Help Build Your Business Faster

It can be hard to find time to build your business, especially if you have a full-time job. “Moonlighting” to build your business can lead to burnout, problems with your current employer, or the failure of your spare-time startup.

5 Trade-Offs To Build Your Business (1)

I found I had to make five specific trade-offs to make it work. I believe anyone who is leaving a full-time job to pursue their own business can do the same, if you’re willing to make these same five trade-offs.

Tip Of the Week

The easiest way to develop a new habit is to make it as automatic as possible. I suggest making it the first thing you do when you wake up. That’s how I have developed my gratitude and meditation practice over the last month.

Spiritual Foundations

Sometimes we feel as though God might be too busy to pay attention to us as an individual. After all, we are one out of billions.

We think that way because we are constricted by time and place.

God is not limited by these factors.

Even when Jesus was in His earthly body, and thus willingly limited in the same ways we are, Jesus always took time for individuals.

Think about it. Jesus was traveling when he took time out to minister to the demon-possessed man from a distant area, the country of the Gadarenes. On his way there, He had time to minister to his disciples and show them he could calm the stormy sea.

When He and the disciples returned to Galilee, a man named Jairus came to the Lord for help. His 12-year-old daughter was dying and he came to ask Jesus to come heal her. On His way there, Jesus was stopped by the woman who had been tormented by a bleeding condition for 12 years, and Jesus took time to stop and heal her.

While He stopped for the woman, Jairus’s daughter died, and the report came that Jesus was too late. Jesus reasured Jairus, “Do not be afraid; only believe, and she will be made well.” (Luke 8:49–50)

He took the time to walk the rest of the way to Jairus’ house and raised the little girl from the dead.

Now, Jesus is not limited by time or space. He can be and is everywhere at once. And He always hears when we call.

Even when He is busy.

Even when it seems too late.

He will always come through for you!

Success Story: Matt McWilliams

This is an interview featuring a success story from Matt McWilliams.

Feature Presentation: Five Trade-Offs Help Build Your Business Faster

It can be hard to find time to build your business, especially if you have a full-time job. “Moonlighting” to build your business can lead to burnout, problems with your current employer, or the failure of your spare-time startup.

This is familiar territory for me – I built my marketing and copywriting business while working a full-time job in the demanding world of broadcast radio. In 2005, I was an executive with a regional broadcast company, traveling virtually every week, and responsible for the programming and marketing of dozens of radio stations all across the Northwest United States.

Even though I had a cushy radio job, I could see the handwriting on the wall for an industry faced with increasing competition, decreasing audience, and shrinking revenue. It was time to get out. I decided to start my own business.

In order to make the transition from full-time employee to full-time entrepreneur, I needed to build  my business income up before I left the corporate job – and I had to do it without stealing time form my “day job”.

I found I had to make five specific trade-offs to make it work. I believe anyone who is leaving a full-time job to pursue their own business can do the same, if you’re willing to make these same five trade-offs.

The Five Trade-Offs

  1. Trade short-term pain for long-term gain. Let’s face it: you’re going to be working harder for a while. That meant, for me, getting up earlier in the morning and going to bed later at night. In the short term, the extra work was painful. But the freedom I gained from making this trade was well worth the pain.
  2. Trade activities that are tension-relieving for those that are goal-achieving. In the old days, when I was just a “company man” workin’ the job, I often blew off steam by watching lots of TV, going to the movies, and spending weekends at the lake, hiking, or just hanging around the house. Those activities were tension-relieving, but I traded them for activities that were goal-achieving. This meant time previously spent on recreation was now devoted to writing copy,  creating products, and marketing my services.
  3. Trade hours now for days later. I soon realized that I was trading extra hours in the present day for days of freedom in the future. This realization helped keep me motivated. I keep telling myself that having all my days in the future free to do as I please was worth giving up some of my hours in the short-term.
  4. Trade luxuries for leverage. If you don’t have enough time to build  your business as quickly as you’d like, you may want to hire some help. Outsource some work, for instance. Building a business requires more than and investment of time; it also requires, to some degree, an investment of money. For instance, you might cut back on vacation spending, forgo the latest Apple gizmo, and give up other luxuries, so you can invest those extra dollars in order to outsource work for the business. You’re trading luxuries for the leverage you need to reach your goal.
  5. Trade fringe time for full-time status. Most of us have “fringe time” that mostly goes to waste – or at least that is filled with activities that don’t have any lasting value. Think about your own “fringe time” and how you currently fill it. Are you willing to trade your fringe time now for full-time status in your own business in the future?

If you are willing to make these trade-offs, you can find the time to get your business off the ground even if you’re a “spare-time startup” – and you can leave the security of your job with income already rolling from the business.

Question: What are some things you need to “trade” to help make your start-up business successful?

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6 thoughts on “#157: Five Trade-Offs Help Build Your Business Faster

  1. Enjoyed the discussion on limiting beliefs today with Matt. My take-away: our self-limiting beliefs like “I can’t do this” are tied directly to the “fear of risk.” It’s a way that we try to protect ourselves.

  2. Love it Ray. I’ve been working hard on the 5 trade-offs you mentioned. I’d say that numbers 4 and 5 are possibly the most challenging as I balance what I’m doing along with family and church responsibilities.

    Especially as it relates to investing resources, I’m always balancing investments in myself as it relates to capabilities and tools as compared to getting additional people involved. It’s a tension I’m still working on.

    And, of course, always asking the question, “Am I doing this because it will yield more business or just because it will make something quicker or more fun?

  3. Ray, I am currently working a “day job” while growing my writing and coaching business. I loved the discussion about tradeoffs. I particularly resonated with trading hours today for days later. Sometimes, I get really mired in how crazy and hard my life can be working two jobs, but I have started to think of it in these terms, and find I am in a much better place mentally.

    Thank you for sharing your wisdom!