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3 Ways to Start/Grow a Successful Online Business On Holiday Weekends

Americans have a long holiday weekend coming up; this coming Monday, May 29th, is Memorial Day. As a freelance writer, self-publisher, internet marketer and ecourse developer, I have a love/hate relationship with holidays.

My love for holidays has nothing to do with the obvious reasons, eg, no work, hanging with friends and family; sleeping late, etc. I love long holiday weekends because they give me time to work on my business uninterrupted; the kind of time that’s hard to come by when you have so much going on.

Note: This post was originally written on May 27, 2011, and entitled, 3 Ways to Start/Grow a Freelance Writing Business On Holiday Weekends. It was updated on May 26, 2017, and renamed, 3 Ways to Start/Grow a Successful Online Business On Holiday Weekends. One more thing … This post contains affiliate links. Here’s the site’s affiliate disclosure policy for full details.  Now, to today’s post.

Starting an Online Biz: Working 9 to 5 & Finding Time to Do It All

I received the following email from a fellow tweeter highlighting just how precious time is. After reading Inkwell’s  ebook on when it’s time to quit to freelance full-time, she wrote me, saying:

 Hello Yuwanda!

I wanted to say Thank You again for this e-book! It has strengthened my resolve and especially in that you say- freelancing is not rocket science. Don’t over think it. I tend to be a risk taker and would have no troubles jumping right in but I am married to a non-risk taker. 🙂 Which is a good balance mostly.

My problem is that my FT job leaves me little energy to do much else. (emphasis added) But, I must and will get over that. Additionally, you have given me encouragement about the articles not having to be published. I just need to write them … oh, I feel like a complainer and not a doer on too many days. Today is the best day to start.

Thanks for your encouragement. I look forward to learning so much more from you!

I responded, writing:

I’ve been where you are, so know exactly what you’re going through. That’s why I used to work a lot on the weekends. For a while (almost two years), I literally didn’t have a life, but that’s what it took for me to get where I wanted to be.

I found that having a “life plan” (eg, where you want to be in 3, 5 or 7 years) helps to really give you a kick in the pants, because you can see month by month, week by week and day by day what you need to be doing to get where you want to be. “Some day” becomes a bad word when you’re working with a life plan.

Sound/feel familiar?

How to Use Holidays to Grow Your Freelance Business: 3 Tips

Most of us have to work when everyone else is playing to be successful because there will never be a “perfect” time to start and/or get to all the things you want to do. This means putting in hours at night, on the weekends, during holidays, etc.With this in mind, following are three things you can do to use this upcoming holiday weekend to make some strides.

1) Create a Life Plan

It’s hard to get where you’re going without a map. And, just having one in your head won’t work. It just doesn’t. Trust me.

You must have a life plan. Write out where you want to be in a year, 3 years, 5 years – and put it where you can see it every day.

This way, you won’t get off track and will be constantly reminded of your dreams. Accomplishing any dream in life starts with a plan.

Then, you have to constantly work the plan. So if you don’t have a life plan, this Memorial Day weekend is an excellent time to carve out a couple of hours and put one together.

2) Do Admin Work

What I mean by this is, if you’ve been meaning to sign up to PayPal; research affiliiate marketing opportunities; set up a blog; finally convert your Pinterest account to a busines account; get those writing samples done  – whatever it is – this holiday weekend is an ideal time to do so.

You’ll still have time for fun. But, you owe it to your dream — to the life you want to have – to always take some of your “play time” and put in some work. Because, believe me, the real fun in life starts when you’re living the life you really want to live.

In the Words of John Lennon, “Imagine

  • Imagine the day you get to turn in your notice at your job;
  • Imagine waking up and going to your office – right down the hall in your fuzzy pink slippers;
  • Imagine being able to go on that 10-day vacation without worrying about if you have enough “vacation days; etc.
  • Imagine – being free to live the life you want to live.

Use “imagining” to inspire you.

But, imagining is not enough. You gotta put in the work and that means using time wisely. If you’re a regular reader of this site/blog, then you’ve read where I’ve written at least a million times, “Time is your greatest asset as a freelance entrepreneur — especially when you’re doing everything — so don’t waste it.”

3) Create a “Get to the Next Level” List

If you’re on track with all the above, create a to-do list. This is a list of things you need to do to get your freelance business to the next level. Let me explain.

The tendency is to relax a bit when you’re a full-time freelancer, especially if you can pay all of your bills. But, you’re not in this to just pay bills – you need to create financial security. And for most of us, this means getting out of our comfort zone and pushing ourselves to get to the next level.

This may mean creating new streams of income (I’ve added two more since I first wrote this post in 2011); adding more services, changing prices, updating your website, developing and marketing your own line of products, etc. It could be one, or a few, or all  of these and more. But, you first need to see in black and white what your options are. So, write them down, then choose one or a couple to get started on.

I subscribe to one freelancer writer’s feed and she illustrated this point perfectly in a post recently, writing:

It’s been…a month?…since I last posted something new.  And you know – it isn’t because I didn’t want to.  . . . But you can’t do everything at once and I’ve had two projects that I’ve been working on that has put some of my other things on the back burner. . . .

I’ve been [experimenting] with residual income.  . . . the reason is because I want you to understand that most people who work online these days have more than one source of income. Most people do a few different things that work for them.  And to me, that is one of the greatest things about working online.

The post was enttitled, “Where the hell has she been?” on DanielleMcGaw.com, but it’s no longer live. Too bad; it was a great post. Anyhoo …

Create Multiple Streams of Income for Financial Stability

She’s right, most people who work online these days have more than one source of income. I have four:

It’s a constant juggling act to get everything done. And that’s one of the reasons I love holidays. It gives me a break from having to be “on” for so many others; and I can just concentrate on my projects without interruption from email, social media, etc.

So, I’m not just telling you to work this holiday weekend. I’ll be working too. Yeah, I’ll relax some, for sure. After all, I do live in a beach community and it’s hot as heck here now! But, you can bet your patootie that I’ll be logging some hours on the business end too. To that end . . .

What Will I Be Working on This Memorial Day Weekend?

In 2011, I was working on writing a new ebook to put on my site as a free giveaway to  get more email subscribers. I’d been wanting to do that for a while. And, while I could have chosen one of my existing ebooks as a free giveaway, I didn’t because I wanted to give potential subscribers what they’d asked me for.

This year, I’ll be working on publishing four romance novellas, which was part of my freelance writing goals for this year. I started writing romance novellas in 2013 and have written over 40 so far. Most were written in 2014 and 2015. In the last year and a half or so, I’ve only written three.

Earlier this year, I got my affiliate marketing business off the ground, so now I’m turning my attention back to my romance writing. See how having so many balls in the air means you have to use your time really wisely?

Share Your Thoughts

So, what are you going to work on this holiday weekend to grow your online business? Has this post inspired any ideas? Do you think you should work on holiday weekends? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments section below.

And please, have a fun holiday weekend. But, do be safe. Drunk driving is really prevalent on long holiday weekends (especially in the warm weather). So be careful.

Best,
Yuwanda

P.S.: Make Money Writing in 3 Different Ways: Get full details.

P.S.: If you’re serious about making money online, you need a blog. Learn why and how to start one.

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    Comments

    1. Thanks for posting this, great food for thought for this long weekend. A good friend and I were talking about goal setting this week and she got me to write down 1 big goal, without getting bogged down in detail, and set an intention. I wrote down “I want to keep my two days a week at Muttville while earning 10K a month through my websites.” Muttville is a senior dog rescue, I volunteer there and LOVE it. I want to earn through what I write on my websites and be clear on what my multiple revenue opportunities are so I better eggs in different baskets. I’m going to give this article another read and clear my head. Then write down bullet points with my life plan!

      • And as you shared in the FB group Diana, it worked! Good for you. I love it when people take advice and run with it. Again, thank you for sharing your inspiring post in the group. It made my entire weekend. 🙂 Keep up the great work and I have no doubt you’ll reach your goals.

    2. Well, I between fun and play, I’m going to build my business over the holiday weekend.

    3. Yuwanda says:

      I hear ya about being a workaholic Kimberly. I’m the same way. But, when you enjoy what you do, is it really “working.” Hmmmm . . . .

      The older I get, I just go with the flow. If I feel like it when I’m NOT “supposed” to be working, I’ll log on anyway. The angst of not doing so is as bad as working, so I just say, I might as well BE working. 🙂

    4. Kimberly says:

      I worked through some of the questions from the book Your Best Year Yet this Memorial Day weekend, and I was able to rest and relax also, and I do believe that holiday weekends can be most productive, especially for goal setting, administrative tasks and such. I have workaholic tendencies and so I must be very careful to keep my life in synergy.

    5. Yuwanda says:

      @Danielle:

      RE “It’s great to make money writing for other people but we should never forget that our writing skills can earn us much more money if we write for ourselves!”

      I couldn’t have said it better myself. I’m so glad I started to make this transition a few years ago. It’s been beyond rewarding, especially in light of “write for pay sites” like eHow changing rules. When you have your own, you never have to worry about how somebody else’s business rules are going to affect your income.

      FYI, love reading that post, “Where the Hell Has She Been!”

      So on point in so many different ways.

      Continued success!

    6. Hi Yuwanda,
      Thanks so much for mentioning and reading my latest post. To be honest, I’m honored that you subscribe!

      You’ve got such great stuff and your readers would be wise to listen. It’s great to make money writing for other people but we should never forget that our writing skills can earn us much more money if we write for ourselves!

    7. Yuwanda says:

      @Bonnie,

      Glad you’re enjoying the site. Welcome!

      Regarding SEOing your site; it’s a constantly changing field, so you have to stay on top of it. You’re smart to use tools to help you in this area.

      One word of caution, when you do use tools, make sure they’re from a reputable developer. There are very few absolutes in SEO, so what one tool may tell you is wrong may not be so with another one. You don’t want to run afoul of SE (Google) guidelines, so go to their site directly to stay on top of what they say about how to rank well.

      Here’s wishing you much success with your freelance writing career.

      @Kimberly,

      Thanks for the compliment. And, yeah, building something for yourself is the only way to go in my opinion. For, it’s the only type of financial security one can count on.

      By the time we retire, SS may not be there, but your VRE (virtual real estate) will live on (and pay on) — if you put in the effort.

    8. Kimberly says:

      Good post Yuwanda. I’ve been using Your Best Year Yet by Jinny Ditzler as a life plan blueprint. I too, plan to work this weekend. It feels so good knowing that I’m building something for myself. Keep the posts coming. You never disappoint.

    9. Hi Yuwanda,

      I love your site! I’m a newbie to freelance writing so I have lots to learn about running a business. This weekend I plan on sprucing up my web site for SEO. Why? I recently submitted it to one of those free online SEO analyzing tools and recieved a grade of “D” for SEO! What a shocker. I thought I had done pretty well with WordPress’ All-in-One SEO pack. Oh well…..

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