How Can I Start A Business When I Don’t Have Time? 5 Steps

Setting time to work on a business is the key to long-term success. You may be asking yourself, how can I start a business when I don’t have time?

Here’s the truth: Only you can decide how you make the most out of your time. Finding the time is not that difficult- we make it happen and move on from there.

If you’re committed to making something a reality, you’ll set time to do so. In this article, I’ll go over five ways to find more time for your business. 

Also, I’ll briefly go over my thoughts on why you should think of it differently. If you want to make some changes, you may have to do things differently.

  1. How To Find Time To Start A Business
  2. Work During Quiet Periods
  3. Keep Your Business And “Job” Separate
  4. Plan Out Your Tasks Weekly
  5. Set One-Three Priorities Daily
  6. Work On One Task At A Time
How can I start a business when I don't have time? This post goes over some ways to get more time back.

How to find time to start a business

I often hear the saying, “I don’t have time to do that.” I was guilty of doing that myself.

When you fall into that thinking, you’re making up excuses. Here’s the thing: we all have the same 24 hours on a given day. 

Yet, some people will waste it doing things that do not matter; for example, watching tv or scrolling on social media.

Time management is about prioritizing things that matter the most. If it’s that important to you, you will set a time to do it.

But if not, you’re making up excuses; in other words, it’s not a priority for you. Let’s discuss some of the best approaches to finding more time.

How can I start a business when I don’t have time?

You don’t “have time”– you just do it! Some people say lack of time is an excuse for not starting a business; however, it’s ultimately up to them to make the time for themselves. When time is set aside, people will make it happen and go from there. Let’s go over some ways to do that.

How can I start a business when I don't have time? This post goes over a few approaches to finding more time for your business.

Work during quiet periods

That can vary from time to time: So either wake up early or stay up a little late if needed. These periods are great for maximizing focus time while having fewer distractions.

If you’re a morning person, set aside an hour or two to work on things that move the needle. If you live with someone or have a family, that’s a good time to do work when they’re not up. 

Also, we tend to be more creative during these times (and do our best). If you want to learn more about it, check out a post I wrote not too long ago on creativity.

A relevant article from

Read next on “Why Are We More Creative At Night? 5 Reasons“, to read more on why we happen to be more creative at night.

Keep your business and “job” separate

If you’re working full-time, then don’t work on your business while at the office (or working remotely). That sounds obvious, but some people are tempted to do so during work hours.

For instance, don’t try to sneak time in while using employer materials (working on a company computer). The only good time is when you’re on your lunch break.

Not only is it wrong, but it looks bad on you getting paid to do other things. It’s not worth losing your job when you cannot afford to do so.

How can I start a business when I don't have time? It's best to not work on your business at your job.

Plan out your tasks weekly

That may be difficult at first, but it can help save you lots of frustration. The best thing to do is set a half-hour every week to plan out the upcoming week ahead.

For example, you can do that sometime during the weekend (middle or the end). If that’s Saturday afternoon, Sunday night, or even Monday morning, do what works best.

While you’re planning, figure out what you need to get done, and then put it on your calendar. When you write it down somewhere, you’ll make it stick better.

Also, you’re more likely to follow up on those tasks by writing them down somewhere. You’ll have something to refer back to.

If things change for some reason, just go back and make some adjustments if needed.

The Best Way To Start A Business When You “Don’t Have The Time”

Set one-three priorities daily

If you’re a fan of to-do lists, that may sound odd if you’re one of those people. But there are some downsides to a to-do list, such as not checking off all your tasks.

The reality is you may not cross off all of your items in one day. Whether you have 10 or 30 things to do in one day, you may not get to all of them. 

Here’s my approach: Make an ordinary to-do list. After that, take out between one-three tasks that are the most crucial things to get done.

How can I start a business when I don't have time? Making a priority list can help with figuring out which tasks are more important.

Regarding business work, what are the most important things that need to get done that day? 

From there, only focus on those tasks until they’re completely done. Any other tasks that are not important can wait if you have time during the day.

That can help identify which tasks need more attention, and how you can incorporate them into your schedule. I find this approach to be really helpful when I’m prioritizing my work.

Every minute you spend in planning saves 10 minutes in execution; this gives you a 1,000 percent Return on Energy!

-Brian Tracy (self-development coach and public speaker)

Work on one task at a time

Now that may sound silly, but it can help you save more time than before. We think that multitasking can help us get more done, but it does not.

Multitasking actually slows you down. According to one study, only 2.5 % of people can multitask effectively. In other words, the majority of people are not great at multitasking.

By narrowing it down to one specific thing, you can get the most out of your time. Especially if it’s creative work (i.e. content creation), that can be very helpful starting out.

How can I start a business when I don't have time? Working on one task at a time can help you get more done, instead of multitasking.

My best practice: Use the Pomodoro technique

One of my favorite practices is using the Pomodoro technique. I’ve discussed it before, but it helps me get complex tasks done much sooner (i.e. under two hours).

This technique involved working in 25-minute work periods, followed by a 5-minute break. You repeat it over four times, followed by a longer break (i.e. 15-30 minutes).

If you use it correctly, this technique can work well for getting critical tasks done. I encourage you to try it out and see if it makes a difference.

A relevant article from

Read next on “How To Do The Pomodoro Technique: Is It Effective For Time?” to learn more about the Pomodoro technique in general.

My thoughts

It may feel daunting to find time to work on your business. If you’re working full-time and have personal commitments, you’ll feel that you’re limited on time. 

But think about it: If you’re doing something you don’t enjoy and want to run your own business, shouldn’t time management be something to master?

The purpose is to quit your job (at some point) and obtain more time in your schedule. Investing time in your business is essential to make the necessary changes in your life.

Even setting aside some commitments for the next twelve months, you can accomplish a lot during a one-year period. You will be amazed to see how much can take place during that time. 

If you can find the time to do what’s necessary, you’ll get to where you want to go. But if not, you’ll continue to make excuses and go nowhere.

Final Words

It’s time that you stop saying you don’t have time anymore. Instead of saying, “I don’t have time”, say:

“I do have time, and I will make things happen no matter what it takes.”

The things we talked about earlier can help make the most out of your time. These practices have helped me be more mindful of how I spend my time. Along with that, willing to make changes as needed.

Your Turn: Have you fallen for the “I don’t have time” excuse trap?

I would like to get your thoughts on this topic. Have you been guilty of telling yourself you do not have time?

What’s making you not go after what you want in life? Is it a lack of motivation, or possibly the environment you’re in?

What can you do differently about it? Are you willing to make changes to your daily routine?

Feel free to share your thoughts by leaving a comment below. I look forward to reading your responses, and I’ll gladly respond promptly.

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Eric is the owner and chief editor of 

He takes great pride in helping people manage their time and grow their businesses. 

Eric is a firm believer in financial and time freedom, as he believes in financial independence and taking ownership of your time. 

“Time is your most important asset. It can be your best friend or worst enemy. How you use your time can shape the future you desire to have.” 

In his leisure time, Eric loves to write and read whenever possible. He enjoys going for long walks outdoors while doing in-home workout videos every week. 

You can also connect with Eric via LinkedIn.

Self Photo 2019: Here's a picture at a building in downtown Chicago.

4 thoughts on “How Can I Start A Business When I Don’t Have Time? 5 Steps”

  1. These 5 steps to starting a business for busy people are very helpful. 

    I’ve always wanted to start a business but my daily schedule is very tight. I have a full-time job (9-5), plus I also have to take care of things when I get home because my youngest is only 5 years old. 

    But you are absolutely right; we all have 24 hours a day and if others are even busier than us, we can start a side hustle.

    If we are dead serious about making things happen, we will find a way. Oftentimes, we just want to make excuses as to why we are not getting to where we want in life. 

    For me, the biggest takeaway from your post is creating a to-do list and working on each of them one at a time. 

    Thanks, Eric.

    • Hi Alice,

      Being on a tight schedule is not easy, especially if you’re a young parent.  It can be challenging to find time during the day to work on a side business.

      The fact that there are 24 hours a day shows that we have time to do anything. The problem is that people don’t use their time well, especially at the end of the day.

      When people come home from work, they’re tired and have low energy. That’s a big reason why I think people don’t even bother- they’re mentally exhausted at the end of the day.

      But there are ways to do it. Whether that’s getting up earlier in the morning or staying up an hour too late at night, it is possible.

      As someone I know once said: How we spend our time is what matters the most. There’s so much that we can do on a given day, that we need to schedule time blocks to do the most important tasks.

      Yes, creating to-do lists the right way can be very helpful. As long as you prioritize your tasks, then you will do well.

      Thank you very much for sharing your thoughts. I can’t tell you how much I appreciate them.

  2. Hi Eric,

    I came across your article and I must say it’s quite informative and practical.

    Your tips on finding quiet periods to work, separating your business from your job, planning out tasks weekly, setting daily priorities, and working on one task at a time are excellent ways to manage time and get things done.

    I appreciate how you emphasize the importance of committing to make the business a reality and willing to make changes to find the time for it. 

    This mindset can be a game-changer for anyone looking to start a business while juggling other responsibilities.

    Overall, your article provides valuable insights that aspiring entrepreneurs can use to structure their time and achieve their business goals. 

    Thank you for sharing your thoughts and advice. Keep up the great work!

    • Hello Ani,

      Being committed to building a business takes discipline and effort to make it happen. Far too often, people start a business but they don’t have that high level of committment to move forward.

      The tips laid out earlier can help to make changes, and ultimately, see great results in your business. Having those habits to practice can help in the long-run, and they can make a difference.

      Something I’ve pondered on for some time: People say they don’t have time, but actually, they do. 

      The key takeaway to remember is people do have time. They will make time to do things that matter, and it’s how they spend it is what really counts.

      Thank you very much for sharing your thoughts- they’re greatly appreciated.


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