It can be hard to keep up with the demands of everyday life, a day job and pursing passion projects. I honestly can’t say I know anyone who only works their 9-5 job and goes home to do nothing. I’ve been writing for blogs and working remote internships in addition to school and an in office job for the past four years, and I’ve always wondered how the women I admired prioritized things during the day. I see women I follow doing amazing things, balancing multiple projects and I can never wrap my head around how they get everything done.
We all struggle with keeping balance in our lives and not get too wrapped up in making a living for ourselves that we neglect our personal lives. I’ve seen countless articles on how women do it all, how successful people start their mornings or end their days and I still continue to wonder what does an entire day for a multidimensional woman look like? I don’t expect anyone to work all day, I sure don’t - so I am particularly interested in hearing both sides to a successful woman’s day; the work and the play,
Here’s how 5 side hustlers with full time jobs spend their day:
Name: Kristie Carter-George
Title: Graphic Designer, Contractor Currently through the BOSS Group with Edison Electric Institute (EEI)
Based in: MD & DC
Side Hustle: Freelance Graphic Designer – The majority of my clients hire me for print, web design, social media graphics, infographics and branding. My clients include bloggers, startups, small business owners, non-profits, and educational institutions.
6 AM: I check email for my freelance, texts, and my bank accounts. I have a client that I do daily social media graphics for. I also set-up Twitter and LinkedIn posts for Black Business Network Exchange (BBNE) if I was too busy the night before. Breakfast is usually oatmeal with fresh fruit. I end the time by writing out my daily tasks in my planner.
7:30 AM: Shower, put on my clothes, do my hair, watch a show I missed the night before, and get my bag together.
8:30 AM: I get to the metro station by 8:40 am via an Uber. On the train I read a book or my Mother Earth News.
9 AM: Get into work, check my email, and make breakfast (currently I am addicted to Teaism’s Ginger Scones). I open up Twitter, LinkedIn, and Her Agenda Slack. I usually have about 2 to 3 projects a day. I also check-in with my boss about midway to make sure nothing new has come-up.
1 PM: Lunch is usually never a true break. If I have a client meeting, then that is my lunch, and I eat while working. Running to pick up my prepared meals from Power Supply on Mondays. I recently accepted that I cannot do everything and opted for meals that can be thrown in the microwave 3 days a week. It’s doesn’t save money, but frees up my busy schedule. Why do all this extra work if the extra money doesn’t make my life a little easier right?!
2 - 4:30 PM: Probably my most productive hours. Meetings usually happen during this time at work as well.
5 PM: One of the following things is going to happen:
o Running off to a therapy appointment (no shame!)
o On my way to meet my fiancé’ to go home
o Going to a Happy Hour or Networking event
6 PM: I no longer cook Monday through Wednesday. I need time to wind down from work, clean the house, balancing my budget, talk to my fiancé’ about both our days, and watch a little TV. For bigger projects I start working pretty much when I get home. There have been many days when I am chopping vegetables with a client on the speaker phone.
12 AM: I stop working at midnight and go to bed. Sometimes if a bigger project is taking over my life I will stay up an hour later to watch TV. I don’t like going to bed with any work on my mind.
I do a good bulk of my work on the weekends and usually start working on Saturday by 12 pm, after a morning of Yoga. I try to limit myself to 1 project a day for evening work during the week. I do have currently three revolving clients, so I only commit to 2 or 3 extra clients at a time. This can be hard, because I love what I do, but I already dedicate most of my weekend to clients.
Name: Lauren Bealore
Title: Regional Operations Coordinator, OCDP MI Time to Care Campaign, Precinct Delegate and City Commissioner
Based in: MI
Side Hustle: I am the Co-Founder of Y.A.B., a venture conglomerate that houses start-ups owned by women of color while providing them with resources in the areas of business development, personal development, community engagement and mentorship
9 AM - 5 PM: Arrive at the office or work from home/a coffee shop. Day-to-Day operations in this role include meeting with or calling stakeholders and unions that can be involved in the ballot initiative. I also am responsible for recruitment through colleges and universities as well as other political organizations or past campaigns.
I can slip in 10-20 minutes in my 9-5 workday to answer e-mails, follow-up with my Co-Founders, or take a brief call.
7 – 9 PM: My evenings and weekends are when I am able to multi-task at the highest capacity. I can update our Y.A.B. website as well as my personal website, catch up on e-mails, and do research for new partnerships or opportunities. I feel that in today's professional realm, it is more beneficial to have an everyday job and side hustle. It has been very strategic on my behalf to combine politics and business because both actually affect one another every day.
Name: L’Oreal Thompson Payton
Title: Media Relations Manager, Girl Scouts of Greater Chicago and Northwest Indiana
Based in: Chicago, IL
Side-hustle: In addition to my blog, LTintheCity.com, I'm a freelance writer and editor. My work has appeared in JET, EBONY, Sesi, Brit + Co, Black Bridal Bliss and Joblogues, to name a few.
6:00-6:30 AM: I'm naturally a morning person, so this tends to be my most productive time of the day. Once I get out of bed, I start my day with breakfast and prayer or a devotional/mediation.
6:30-7 AM: After I have some fuel in my body, it's time for my morning workout. I usually do yoga or complete a workout video on YouTube (PopSugarFitness and BadYogi are my faves).
7-7:45 AM: After I shower and get dressed, I settle in with my laptop and get to work. I typically write my blog posts and freelance stories on the weekend, so I use weekday mornings to keep track of emails and jot down ideas for future stories.
7:45-8:15 AM: This is when I'm commuting to my day job. I usually spend this time unplugged and reading, I'm currently reading Queen Sugar by Natalie Baszile.
8:15-8:30 AM: I try to get in to the office about 15 minutes or so before the start of the work day to get my to-do list together.
8:30 AM-12:00 PM: During this time, I'm focused on my day job: writing press releases, conducting interviews for blog posts, attending meetings, etc.
12-1 PM: I have to eat at noon otherwise I get HANGRY! Because my husband works across the street from my office, we try to get lunch together a few times a week. And I'll also use this time to check my personal email to respond to any inquiries, etc.
1-5 PM: Work, work, work, work, work, with an afternoon snack at 3, typically an apple.
5-9 PM: It's usually either a networking event, speaking engagement or gym time. Once I get home, I'll check email again after dinner and work on any stories with upcoming deadlines.
9-10 PM: My phone automatically goes into "do not disturb" mode at 10. During this time, I Netflix and chill with my husband. I also try to journal before bed to reflect on the day and prepare myself for the next day.
On the weekends is when I'll draft posts for my blog, work on freelance stories and schedule social media for my blog. In total, it probably takes about 3-4 hours, but I tend to break it up over the course of two days.
Name: Chasity Cooper
Job Title: Communications Manager, Climate Action Campaign
Location: Washington, D.C.
Side Hustle: Digital Swaggerist + Journalist - www.chasitycooper.com
I won't lie - it's actually challenging to balance both my 9-to-5 and my side hustle, but I'm learning to manage it from day to day. The idea of my days looking the exact same bores the heck out of me, so I try to switch things up. Currently, I am training for my first marathon and while that has been rather time consuming, I'm doing my best to find time to work on creative projects.
5:30 – 6 AM: I use the first 30 minutes or so for journaling, prayer/meditation and quiet time. I also have this thing where I admire the sun rising outside of my window (I'm lucky to have a pretty dope view from my apartment window.)
7:45 – 8:30 AM: During my commute to work, depending on how the Metro wants to cooperate with me, I usually read a book or business magazine (Inc and Entrepreneur are my faves), or listen to a podcast.
9 AM- 5:30 PM: My work day is typically from 9 AM to 5:30 PM. Lately, I've been cognizant of taking my lunch break away from the office to get some other things (not work related) done.
6 – 10 PM: After work I will go workout, attend a networking event or meet up with a friend, or just head home to enjoy a nice glass of wine and catch up on one of my favorite television shows. I do like to use the evenings to create my to-do list for the next day, do more writing and talk to other fellow creatives (either on the phone or online) about upcoming projects or just to catch up.
11 PM: It's lights out and off to sleep.
Name: Anuli Akanegbu
Title: Senior Account Executive, Edelman
Based in: NYC
Side Hustle: My two current side hustles are my website www.anuliwashere.com and my weekly newsletter, The Intersection.
5:30 – 7:30 AM: I post new content on my website every Thursday morning and send out a new newsletter every Saturday morning. I would like to say that I have this lean and mean automated and synchronized production machine, but I don't. At any given time I'm working on at least three pieces of content for my website, so I keep a journal to organize myself. Sometimes a post may require an interview, or original photos, or a medium outside of writing.
7:30 – 11:30 PM: Monday-Wednesday nights after work I work on a piece of content for the website. Thursday-Friday nights I work on a new newsletter. It's easier to schedule items for the website ahead of time, but the newsletter has to be done on either Thursday or Friday because it's time-sensitive. People subscribe to learn what I'm thinking about during a given week, so I can't share last week's news with them. Plus, I pretty much write the newsletter off-the-cuff based on how I'm feeling at the moment which results in the kind of honest writing that people open it for.
I can't say that I am balanced, but I am skewed towards meeting my personal goals and creating the content I wish to see in the world. At the moment, that takes a lot of late nights, Sunday afternoons and writing things down by hand.