A Working Mom’s Journey from Selling Her Time to Becoming a Digital Entrepreneur, with Geographical Freedom, and More Time for The People & Things That She Loves
If you are here because you are fed up with your unbalanced lifestyle and you need to make a change to free up more time for the people and things that you love, then this may be just the thing for you.
I worked 50 hour weeks and had only 2 hours each day to spend with my 3-year-old son. Life was short and fleeting and I was missing out on it, spending my time doing something that I had no interest in or passion for. I was fed up with the slow rate of progression in my job and yearned for the freedom to control my own earning abilities.
I started searching the internet for realistic remote business ideas to start around my current financial and family commitments. Something that I would love, and be passionate about. There is so much noise out there, and so many uncertainties. I was skeptical of everything, and still am. Rightly so - not everything is legit...
At some stage, I came across a post about learning the ins and outs of doing business online. Wow! What a fab idea! Online business, yes! But I know absolutely NOTHING about any of it... Will I be able to do this?
I enjoy learning new skills and have never been one to shy away from a personal development challenge. I always take every opportunity to learn on the job, with the odd certification here and there. BUT, I never found a truly fulfilling career path. Something that I am passionate about, proud of, and want to give my all for. That “AH HA! This is it!” moment...
In that life-changing post, there was an option to sign up for a series of emails with free training videos and no commitment. So, of course, I signed up! Why the heck not? I had nothing to lose.
The emails came flooding in, full of interesting and inspiring information about the world of online and digital business. What business options there are out there… and how to get educated about marketing to the world using the power of the internet. I had recently lost my job and was so busy being a mom to a 3-year-old and trying to find a new job that life took over and I soon forgot about the excitement that I felt finding this whole new world of possibility. The emails just kept on coming and I kept ignoring them.
When my second son was born, I was reminded of how short life is and how fast my babies grow. I had to find a way to free up more time to spend with them and the rest of our family, who were by now living in a different country. Once again I was re-evaluating my life's priorities, and immediately remembered the excitement I felt when I opened those first few emails a year ago. Fortunately, they were still sitting in my inbox. Thank goodness I kept them because I knew that there was real value there, and at some stage, I wanted to explore it further.
I started watching video after video. I was hooked, inspired, hopeful, and amped to do this thing. I absorbed every morsel of this exciting new world of opportunity that I had known NOTHING about.
This is it! I had finally found a realistic model for an online business that I can run around my day job and family time. I don’t have to cold call, grow a team, sell to family or set up market stalls. It is fun and creative! I have even built my own website with my very limited tech skills.
"Stop chasing the money and start chasing the passion." - Tony Hsieh
But is it truly realistic?
After doing the hard yards - learning, growing, trying, and testing, following, asking, and understanding - I can say YES, it is absolutely realistic!
It is more realistic now than ever before. In today’s digital world technology and AI have advanced so much that almost anything can be automated, freeing up your time to allow you to do the things that you love. With the internet, businesses can be run from anywhere in the world. All you need is a computer and internet access. Many, many people are already doing just this. The social media platforms are full of digital nomads living their best life.
This is the key to understanding how you can make more time for the things that you love. This is also why this model works so well when you are still trying to work a full-time job. A digital business continues to run 24/7, 365 - whether you are at your day job, working on your business, spending time with your family, or traveling the world… even when you are asleep, or on vacation, your business continues to grow. There is no brick and mortar shop to open, close, staff, rent… AND the days of “No Work No Pay” are really and truly a thing of the past.
What type of business can be run part-time and completely online?
There are various categories of online business, and it really depends on who you are and what business model resonates with you. The famous author of Rich Dad Poor Dad, Robert Kiyosaki, suggests starting with marketing and selling a product that is super easy to fulfill. Something that you believe in, have used yourself with positive results, and are confident in selling to others. It must be something you can sell many times over, possibly every week, without spending too much personal time on customer service, support, or transactions. The last thing you want is to deliver a product after you get home from a long day at work.
Look at Affiliate Marketing
So now you’re thinking - “ok, but what kind of business can run around my day job?” Affiliate marketing is a great start. Especially if you are only starting your journey into understanding how online business and digital marketing work.
This is when you sell other businesses’ products and get a commission. You do not need capital to buy products, and there are no fulfillment or delivery commitments. You are only marketing the product to the internet, and earning commission from each sale. You are linking products to buyers.
As an affiliate, the amount and variety of products that you can sell are unlimited. You are not tied exclusively to any company, brand, or product. You are also free to choose which niche, market, or industry you wish to work in. Hence the opportunity to work within your field of “passion”... Think photographer selling awesome gear. Or an avid cyclist or mountain biker selling kick-ass kit.
The beauty here is that you can sell those products over and over, 24/7, 365. Remember when I told you that you can even sell while on vacation. Even when you are asleep you are growing your income as you grow your sales.
What about E-Commerce?
This is when you source and sell physical products with an E-commerce business. You don’t have to reinvent the wheel. You can order existing products in bulk at wholesale prices and sell them through existing online E-commerce marketplace sites such as Amazon FBA, eBay, or Asos (amongst others), and these sites do all the work for you. You can even go as far as developing your own brand and packaging for products.
They will process all customer payments, manage storage, packaging, distribution, and after-sales customer service. You don't even have to touch the product. All of this means that you can focus on setting up your marketing and ad campaigns to connect your products to the buyers. This can happen in 1 or 2 hours a day... around your day job!
There are other digital or remote opportunities, but...
You can always sign up to sites like Upwork to other remote jobs like copywriting, project management, translation services, scribing, data capture, etc. However, you are always selling your time for money.
Something to consider
No matter the product, the first 10 sales will always be the hardest. But once you've reached the double-figure sales goal you'll gain the confidence that you can rinse and repeat – and grow. You'll learn exactly how many sales you need to be making each week and each month to have a steady business that's going to eventually replace your income.
The biggest question is always "how long is it going to take?" It comes down to whether you pick the right product for the market at the right time – and your commitment to learning the digital skills you need to succeed. It could take 2 days or 12 months. But it is ultimately up to you - and that is the greatest feeling. It is all up to you and your decisions. YOU are in the driving seat.
If you are looking at ways to start a business around your day job and family that will allow you more time to do the things that you love… more time to spend with the people that you love… then you should seriously consider a business that can harness the power of technology to automate large portions of the work for you. This is possible without breaking the bank and at the same time not limiting your income potential.
Where to from here?
Since the pandemic changed the world as we know it and people started losing their jobs and incomes, I have been fortunate to have already started my digital business, and we have been able to move our family back home to our beloved South Africa where I can now continue to run my business. The best part is that with this business model, I have been able to take my business with me, I don’t lose my clients and can continue to earn a foreign income. All the time and effort put into establishing a business has not gone to waste. I can continue to develop my business and grow my worldwide audience from anywhere that we decide to live now and in the future.
"Don't let the fear of losing be greater than the excitement of winning." - Robert Kiyosaki
If you like the sound of this and want to learn more, allow me to share with you the same videos that helped me understand the immense value that this business model could bring to my life. SIGN UP BELOW for the email series with all the videos and introductory information you need about Affiliate Marketing and Ecommerce businesses to see if it is a good fit for you.
“An Investment in Knowledge pays the best interest” - Benjamin Franklin
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