Keeping Your Goals First as a Full-Timer and Side-Hustler

written by regular contributor, amber burns


My favorite thing about welcoming a new year is the feeling we all get to be bold and set dreamy goals for ourselves.

When the slate is wiped clean on January 1, our creativity goes into overdrive and before we know it, we’re surrounded by plans, mood boards and project timelines. 

New, big goals are great, but when you’re dedicated to your side hustle and still work a 9-5, it can be hard to align your goals for the two. It’s easy to focus on the goals your 9-5 requires, because the steps tend to be a little clearer and the path laid ahead has already been blazed by others.

Work one role, do well, get a promotion and repeat. It makes sense and seems easy, but following one set trajectory at work could seriously delay any goals you have for your after work passion. 

A promotion could be great, but will it be worth it if your new role takes too much time and sucks attention away from your side hustle? Or maybe taking the promotion is the right thing, and will open new doors that your side gig will benefit from as well. 

Even if you never plan to take your side gig full time and love where you work, everything you do deserves equal amounts of your attention. Your goals for work matter just as much as your goals for your side hustle. And as a creative balancing both, it’s important to consider both roles when looking at the big picture for your life. 

When you’re sitting or reviewing your new goals, consider these five tips below to make sure you’re on the right track:

Write out your goals in one plan

It can be easy to maintain a separate but equal mindset when it comes to work and side-hustle. However in this case, it’s actually helpful to keep everything in one place. When you can see how everything works together, you can best make decisions that will benefit your long term goals.

Implement deadlines and timelines

No matter what we’re planning for, having set deadlines and timelines helps us to best stay on track and feel that our goal is truly attainable. For everything you hope to accomplish at work, decide what needs to be done for your side-hustle in that same time frame.

Revisit your plans and timeline often

It’s easy to forget what you’re working towards when the tasks just sit on a list in the back of your planner. Review your goals often and check your progress. Coming face to face with what you want to accomplish will help to keep you motivated and on track.

Don’t be afraid to reevaluate

As we change, so do our goals. That’s why it’s so important to revisit them often! If what you were once working for is no longer serving or interests you, it’s okay to let one goal go and move onto another.

When I was at my first full time job, I made the tough decision after reevaluating my goals to cut back on freelancing. I knew that in order to reach my long term creative and professional goals, I needed to be more focused and present at my full time gig. In the long run, that was one of the best decisions I ever made for both my full time job AND my side gig, though it certainly didn’t seem that way at the time.

Whenever your goals are playing towards the big picture you have in your life, you can trust that your decisions will lead you down the right path, every time.

Amber Burns for #createlounge

amber burns

Amber Burns is a full-time tourism PR and marketing professional and part-time lifestyle blogger. You'll typically catch her with a book in one hand and a latte in the other.