How to Make Time for Your Side Gig while Working Full Time

Let’s look at a few ways on how to make time throughout your day, fit a side-gig into a hectic life and make it into a regular habit. This past week has been busy! I'm all moved in back in Nebraska, and ready for school to start next Monday. Last week turned out to be a tech fast for me. I found myself not constantly being on social media (or my phone in general) and I only replied to urgent emails. It feels sooo good to do a digital detox, but I'm getting back into my blogging routine again this week! Today though, I'm super excited to have Kayla Matthews from Productivity Theory sharing some AMAZING tips on how to balance your side hobby along with the rest of your busy life. Be sure to leave some comments on what you all think!


Whether it’s blogging, starting a business, launching a Kickstarter, or something else, finding time for a side-project in addition to full-time work can be seriously hard. I recently read an article on the Huffington Post about how overwork and perfectionism can lead to burnout, and when you’re balancing two jobs at once, that’s twice as true.

So let’s look at a few ways how you can make time throughout your day, fit a side-gig into a hectic life and make it into a regular habit.

Do It in the Morning

Did you know morning people are happier? It’s true: science says so. Science also says that the best way to learn a new skill is by practicing first thing in the morning, after getting a good night’s sleep. So if you’re looking for a time to put in work on your side gig, the morning might just be the best time to do it.

If that sounds appealing to you, then try this: instead of rolling out of bed with just enough time to get ready for work, try going to bed earlier and waking up an hour or two before you need to. Make a pot of coffee, eat breakfast, and then sit down to work on your thing (whatever it is).

Doing so will let you start every day off on the right foot, doing what you enjoy the most, and will also help make sure your brain is up and humming at maximum power by the time you go to work.

Do It Over Lunch

Using your lunch-break at work to put in time on your side gig can be an amazing jump-starter. Your brain is already buzzing, you’ve got a built-in deadline and it makes a nice way to break up the day.

Just be careful that you don’t step on anyone’s toes, and make sure to follow all your company’s guidelines. For example, don’t send personal emails from your work-address or blog on a work-computer—bring a laptop and do your work from there instead.

Do It in the Evening

Working after work—as in, immediately, before you eat dinner or do anything else—can be another great way to find time. That’s probably why so many people use that time to hit the gym: once you get home and have the temptation of food and Netflix in front of you, it becomes a lot harder to haul yourself off the couch and go do stuff.

You’ll have to watch out for a few things here, though. First of all, you’ll want to eat a snack in the afternoon, or dinnertime hunger will make it tricky to focus on work. You’ll also probably want to talk with your friends and family in advance about how you’ll be switching up your schedule, so you’ll be “coming home” later—mentally and maybe literally.

Whatever You Choose, Stick With it

You can find a million articles that tell you when to work and how, but no one knows how you work better than you do. Pick a time in your day that works for you, use that time to focus on your side gig and try to do it at the same time every day.

Because I have one more science fact for you: It takes an average of 66 days to form a habit. That means the longer you do something, the easier it gets to do it.

Once you’ve made time, and committed to sticking with it, you stop having to “make time” at all.

Kayla Matthews

Kayla Matthews is a productivity blogger at ProductivityTheory.com. Follow her on Facebook and Twitter to read all of her latest posts!

Image by Kaboompics