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When Is the Right Time to Leave Your Job and Fully Commit to Your Side Hustle?

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I help women find freedom by building a business or starting a new side hustle. Becoming an entrepreneur is an exciting venture for anyone who wants to experience being their own boss, freedom, and flexibility!

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A woman in a business suit resigning from her nine to five job while holding a cardboard box full of personal items

You’ve been nurturing your side hustle alongside your full-time job, and it’s starting to gain traction. The question now is, when should you take the plunge and make your side hustle your full-time gig? There are a lot of considerations and planning to do before you feel confident committing to your side hustle full-time. And more importantly, are you prepared for the long hours and increased responsibility that come with being your own boss? Your budget should also include funds for a coach or mentor who’ll not only keep your business on track but also keep you posted about latest developments and opportunities in the industry. 

Signs It’s Time to Make the Leap

Figuring out when to quit your full-time job is tough. Use these signs to see if you’re ready:

1. Consistent Income

If your side hustle has been generating a consistent income that matches or exceeds your current salary for at least six months, it’s a strong sign you’re ready. According to a study by Hustle & Groove, 60% of people who transitioned successfully had a consistent income for six months or more.

2. Proof of Concept

Have customers been buying your product or service consistently? If you’ve got a steady customer base, you’ve validated your business idea, which is a green light for going full-time. This consistent interest from customers is more than just numbers; it’s the emotional fuel that can give you the confidence to finally say, “I’m ready to do this full-time.”

3. Skill Mastery

You’ve mastered the skills necessary for your side hustle, reducing the learning curve and potential for costly mistakes. According to Trainual, mastering the skills needed for your side hustle can cut down your transition time by up to 50%. It’s not just about avoiding costly mistakes; it’s about stepping into your new full-time role with confidence. 

4. Finding the right outlet for your passion

If your side hustle feels more like a calling than a job, it’s a good sign you’re ready to make it your main hustle. It’s one thing to enjoy what you’re doing as a side project, but when it becomes a passion that you can’t stop thinking about, it’s a whole different territory. 

5. Balancing personal and professional life 

If you find yourself dedicating more time and energy to your side hustle and still maintaining a work-life balance, it’s a sign you’re ready for the full-time transition. Finding a balance is important because it shows you can handle the demands of running your own business without burning out or neglecting other important aspects of your life, like family or self-care. It’s a sign that you’ve got the time management skills and emotional resilience needed to be your own boss. 

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Things To Consider Financially

Before you hand in your resignation, let’s talk money:

1. Savings

Financial advisors often recommend having at least six months’ worth of living expenses saved up. This cushion will give you peace of mind as you grow your business. A survey by Millennial Money with Katie showed that 75% of successful transitions had this financial cushion. 

2. Health Insurance

Leaving your job often means losing your health benefits. Make sure you have a plan in place before you leave. Whether it’s switching to a spouse’s plan, buying individual insurance, or exploring government options, you need to have this sorted out. Don’t underestimate the peace of mind that comes from knowing you’re covered. 

3. Debt Management

High-interest debt can be a burden. Aim to pay off as much as possible before making the transition. You can also consolidate the debt into one single payment, so it’s easier to keep track. 

Risks and Challenges

Transitioning to a full-time side hustle comes with its own set of risks. Unlike the stability of a regular paycheck, your business income can vary from month to month. Make sure you have a financial cushion to ride out the lean times.

You’re trading the safety net of a steady job for the unpredictability of entrepreneurship. The ups and downs can take a toll on your mental well-being. Beyond just having savings, consider other financial aspects like health insurance, retirement plans, and emergency funds.

For more side hustle tips and advice, follow Carrie Courses.