This post was sponsored, and paid for, by SunTrust. All opinions are my own.
Are you ready to generate extra income? Follow a passion and create a small business that creates flexibility for you and your family? This past week we have been brainstorming the very best way to serve you. And today, I have an amazing special offer for you (at the end of this post)… If you’re a regular around here, you already know how much blogging has changed my life, it’s given me purpose and financial peace, my husband Corey was able to quit his construction job, my family was able to take a road trip all over the U.S. for 8 months, we were able to put a downpayment on a gorgeous house, I’m able to continue to be a stay at home mom, I took 3 months off when my son was born and my blog continued to generate income during this time. I work less than 20 hours a week and made over $85,000 last year. I’m currently brainstorming ways to work between 5-10 hours week and expect my income to continue to grow. But today I wanted to go back to the beginning, give you the back story of how we started. Then, I want to pass the blessing of passive income on to you. So stay tuned until the end, for an opportunity, you won’t want to miss! But first, I’m going to do a little interview with myself so you can get a glimpse of what the beginning of this blogging business looked like…
What made you decide to start your own small business? Describe that moment and what you did to make it a reality.
From the day Corey and I got married, even before that, we both had a desire to spend more time together than the average American work day allows. So we were constantly brainstorming ways to do that: working for the same company, owning our own small business, creating passive income. About a year after we got married, we thought we found the solution: there was a local resale shop for sale and we decided to buy it, fix it up and run it. We started to quickly realize we loved working for ourselves but we weren’t a huge fan of the brick & mortar store front business model with store hours that tie us down — we love being spontaneous, traveling and having flexibility. Long story short, we ended up flipping that business for profit, selling it within 4 months. My theory is, when you realize the place you’re in is no longer serving you, why stay there any longer than you need to. And so we began the hunt for business ideas that could be done from home, with flexible hours, would generate income for us, while working less hours (not more). It took almost exactly a year from the day we sold the resale shop to the day I started this blog. I had been talking about “one day” starting a blog and finally Corey told me, Why not do it now? What do we have to lose? Gah! Best words of my life. I had no idea at the time that the blog that I would make enough that Corey could quit his job, that we would be able to travel, buy a house with a large downpayment, take weeks (even months) at a time off work and the blog would make us money while we were sleeping. But all that aside, what I’m most proud of, is that I took that first step because that’s the only way I would know if it would work or not. The day I started a blog, I had zero idea what I was doing, I had no tech knowledge and no blogger experience. I called up a few friends and family members to see if they had any advice for me. I finally ended up emailing a successful blogger that I followed and asking her how does somebody even start. She was so kind to point me in the right direction. Now it’s my honor and goal to pass that on and help others get started!
Now, think about right after you started your small business – what do you wish you knew then about owning your own business? What would you tell yourself on day one that you know now?
3+ years of blogging behind me and there is soooo much I have learned along the way! There is so much joy and adventure in the journey and it really is best to just take it one step at a time. One thing I would recommend getting right from the beginning is your finances. A few months ago, I read the book Profit First and it’s totally changed my outlook on business finances. Highly recommend checking it out and using his strategies from the first dollar you make. I also partnered with SunTrust for this post and they have an awesome Small Business Best Practice resource.
Small steps today. Big success tomorrow.
They have easy checklists for each category, for example the Starting Your Small Business checklist includes creating separate business bank accounts for your new business income, which is super important and a great reminder! My favorite checklist resource of theirs is Increasing Profitability. I’ve often heard that your goals and dreams should be big enough that they feel uncomfortable (hard to get to, scary) but your small action steps to get there should feel comfortable and doable! Celebrate the first cents you make because as small as it is, it shows that what you’re doing has the potential to work!
What are the top 3 pieces of advice you would tell a person just starting their business?
- Take one step at a time. Keep it simple. There’s no need to feel overwhelmed.
- Use your time wisely. Ask yourself questions like…
- What’s the smallest thing that I can do that will have the biggest impact?
- What 20% of my efforts are resulting in 80% of my success?
- Never stop learning. No matter how successful you get you can always learn more.
And if I could give a fourth tip it would be: Network and connect with other business owners.
Where do I start?
If blogging and passive income sounds exciting to you. I want to help show you how to start. For a limited time, you can can get my course How to Start a Blog in 3 Days for free. I know your life is busy right now. I totally get it. Isn’t it funny, how once in a lifetime opportunities usually come up when you’re the busiest? Maybe there’s a reason that happens. Being busy isn’t actually a valid excuse. All you have to do is reprioritize what you’re currently doing and take advantage of the opportunity. And you might be surprised that you don’t need as much time as you think to get started.
P.S. Are you looking for extra side income? I make full-time income blogging part-time—check out this easy step-by-step tutorial on how start a blog (no tech knowledge required).