How to Do a Mid-Year Check-In for Your Side Hustle
It’s hard to believe that we’re already halfway through the year. Maybe you’ve been busy with work or consumed by a passion project, side hustle, or your own small business. In any case, the beginning of summer is a great time to come up for air and take a moment to evaluate how things are going. We’ve put together four questions to help you see where you stack up against your goals and ensure that the rest of the year is smooth sailing. Pour yourself a cup of coffee, bust out your computer or notebook, and get ready to take your side hustle to the next level.
1. What goals have I already achieved?
Ideally, you set and wrote down some clear goals for yourself and your project or business at the beginning of the year. While checking in weekly, monthly, and quarterly will surely help you stay on track, a mid-year check-in gives you a bigger period of time to consider. Hopefully, you’ll be able to see some real progress by now.
In order to see where you stand, pull out your completed to-do lists (this will be even easier if you use an online tool like Asana or Trello to chart progress), measure necessary numbers against your original objectives, and compile feedback from customers and clients. Is your business where you hoped it would be? Are you crossing the right stuff off your list? Is your growth headed in the right direction? If so, give yourself some major kudos (and maybe treat yourself to a celebratory mani/pedi) — maintaining the hustle is no easy feat, and achieving any of your goals is a huge accomplishment.
2. What do I still aspire to do before the year is finished?
As you probably know, building a business or working on a side hustle means there’s always more to do; basically, the work never ends. Though this can be overwhelming, it’s also exciting. Evolving your passion project means you get to keep trying new things, spreading the word, and serving or selling to even more people.
To keep chugging along, continue to dream big while staying smart about how you strategize for the future. Once you’ve evaluated what you’ve already accomplished and have a good idea about what’s going well or running smoothly right now, it’s time to either recommit to your current goals or to do a bit of fine tuning that’ll inspire you to keep forging ahead. If you’re not sure where to start, consider setting a few short-term goals that you feel confident you can reach, along with a couple of stretch goals you’d be elated to accomplish by the end of the year.
3. Are my current business processes working?
How you do things each day can make or break your efforts to start a successful side hustle or grow a brand or business, so carefully consider your current processes to understand if they’re useful for reaching your goals and will work as your venture grows. Ask yourself: Does the way I do things feel orderly or disorganized? Is this something only I can do, or would it be possible to hand off some functions (administrative or otherwise) to another person so I can focus on the parts I’m good at and enjoy? Are there any obstacles that cause breakdowns or problems with what I’m offering? If so, what can I do to get rid of them or make selling my products or offering my services easier?
When scoping out your processes, consider every aspect of your endeavor: operations, finances, marketing, customer service, production, and so on. Once you’ve completed a thoughtful evaluation, you’ll be in great shape to improve on what you’ve already got going. You might decide to make tiny adjustments that help things move along faster and save you time, hire help and pass off tasks that aren’t your strong suit, or completely scrap ways of doing things that truly aren’t working as your business evolves.
4. How do I feel?
As much as it might feel like you are your business, it can be helpful to remember that you’re simply a human being who’s working hard to share your passions with the world. That being said, your mid-year check-in is also the perfect time to reflect on how you’re caring for yourself as you pursue your dream career.
When evaluating your well-being, consider your spirit, energy, and mental and physical health. Have you been able to stick with your wellness routine amidst chaos, busy stretches, or bouts of doubt and worry? Are you eating well, exercising enough, and clocking quality sleep? Are you still motivated, or are you suffering from imposter syndrome or exhaustion or starting to feel burned out? Remember to make time for self-care and practice self-compassion to keep yourself in tip-top condition; staying healthy and happy will help you do your best work.
How’s your side hustle or small business doing? Tell us how your check-in went or share your work with us on Twitter @BritandCo!
(Photo via Getty)
It can be intimidating to step out on your own and build a business from the ground up. As part of our collaboration with Office Depot, we're talking with Selfmade alum and solopreneur Colette Lawrence, the faith-based motivator and relationship builder behind The M.E.E. Movement, about ways in which women in business can find success.
B + C: How did you know M.E.E. Movement was your business to start?
The M.E.E Movement represents motivation, empowerment, and encouragement for women. It is what represents me. I did not know at first that it was my business to start, but then the thought of monetizing what I loved came to me. It scared me, however. I registered the business in July 2020 and have been slowly building my wings since.
B + C: What's one strategy that's helped you start your business?
Thinking through and researching what the requirements are to start my business, and then asking questions of people who are in the business. Not all advice worked; however, it helped me to figure out what I needed to do and not to do.
B + C: Did you always know life coaching would be your entrepreneurial path?
(Smiles) No, I did not. I 'stumbled" on it. I knew that people were always coming to me for advice and I found that I loved having conversations with them, especially with women, young and old.
B + C: What was your most valuable takeaway from Selfmade?
My most valuable takeaway was the first day of training: Get out of your own way. There were a lot of great moments and important takeaways from every presenter. However, getting out of my own way, pushing past doubts, was for me my most valuable takeaway. Doing something that I had never done before took courage. If I do not focus on what is happening with me mentally then I cannot deliver to my clients successfully.
B + C: What's one piece of advice you would give to female entrepreneurs on the brink of starting?
Get out of your head. You have something to offer. You have what you need to succeed so go ahead and do it.
B + C: How do you stay motivated?
I stay motivated by listening to music and listening to motivational speakers, and sometimes someone will just reach out and talk about the impact that I made in their life. That adds the extra juice or sauce I need to pummel through the day.
B + C: What's your best organizational tip?
Keep a diary and journal. It's the best way for me to keep organized and it also provides a source motivation as I record not only my "losses" but my wins as well.
B + C: Who inspires you in the entrepreneurial space?
Shirley Toliver – She motivates and empowers and makes me always want to show up.
B + C: What has receiving the Office Depot scholarship to Selfmade done to help you start or grow your business?
The scholarship was a blessing in that all the areas that were covered offered valuable information that I needed, from social media to HR. As a new business owner, I needed to know this to increase my own personal awareness in what it takes to run a successful business. The candidness of the presenters made it easy to see myself in their shoes and helped me to realize that I can also get there.
Want to feel motivated to take the next step for your business? Let Office Depot OfficeMax give you the confidence you need with a suite of business services & solutions to help you put your best foot forward. Make a good first impression with business cards & build the business pitch of your dreams with custom presentations. With Office Depot OfficeMax you'll find the tools to reach new customers with confidence.
Head to Office Depot's Selfmade page to check out even more amazing business resources (and discounts!) to help you accomplish more on your entrepreneurial journey. These offers are available for a limited time only, so be sure to take advantage of all this goodness while supplies last. Want to join the next Selfmade cohort this summer? Check out all of the scholarship details right here.