How To Build A Business While Working 9-5

If you can say “working 9-5” and you don’t sing it in a Dolly Parton voice I applaud you.  I’m not even going to admit how many times this song has been in my head this week while writing this blog post! 

This blog post isn’t about the doom and gloom and the current cost of living crisis. Mainly, because that wouldn’t be helpful and it would turn into a moan fest. However, more and more people are seeking the miracle side hustles, quick fixes and an easy way out to main the lifestyle we have all become custom to.  I have seen many TikTok influencers showing how they have walked into the office, quit their job (as they visualized) and are now running a successful 6 figure business- just like that.

If this is true, then I applaud their confidence and bravery but I firmly believe this isn’t real life.

Being successful in affiliate marketing IS real- VERY real, but it is not an over night fix. It’s not a get rich quick thing, it’s a get rich forever thing. This takes time and I’m going to give you some hints to get you on your way.

PLEASE believe me, It’s much simpler to build a side hustle along side your day job, hit your freedom number, and then jump ship if you want to.

Write out your dream year– One of the biggest things I notice when I speak to people is that they don’t believe they can live their dream life. This is mainly because they can’t see. Write it out, look at it, and think about it- I promise you, you deserve and can have that life. I have a mentor- Dean Holland who on our weekly training reminds us of this constantly. Writing and reminding ourselves of our dream brings my dream closer and closer. I have actually put together a starter booklet for writing out your dream life and steps of how to accomplish it. If you’d like a FREE copy, please click here, let me know where to send it and I’ll send you a copy-  no problem.

What does “freedom” mean to you?  What does your life look like? Let me know in the comments, I’d love to know – write it down, bring it to life!

YOU are the author of your life AND  you can make it into what ever you want.

Let your hate motivate I hated my French Teacher for GCSE. I didn’t hate teachers at a teenager, but my French teacher was on another level. She told me on a weekly basis how I wouldn’t pass and “why even bother to come to class?” She would get the class to laugh at my answers and one day, she even told me not to come as it would be a waste of time for both parties. Now can you see why I hated her? Never the less, I used the time to go into the library and I taught myself French. I let my hate motivate. I was going “to show her!” I’m sure you all have similar stories from the past. I did show her, I showed her an A grade on exam day, and showed her that I didn’t need her.

What irritates you about your life? Where you live? Your job? Your current situation? Write the list that irritates you and keep it handy. This will be the motivation for you to carry on.  

Set your freedom number

Everyone has a FREEDOM NUMBER. When I talk about a freedom number, most people visualise themselves in a supercar, Infront of a mansion wafting money in their face as a fan.  Your freedom number isn’t millions, it’s what you bring into the household now. It’s what you can live on, paying the bills, buying food, and treats for the family. It’s the amount of money you need to be earning on the side to quit your day job comfortably and securely.

Mine is £3,000 a month. not once but consistently. Make sure you are hitting your freedom number every month and it’s GORWING. Your freedom number is your wage NOW  

Your freedom number is lower than you think

Give up 1 hour a day. 60 minutes a day is all it takes.  This is non-negotiable- escape plan.

If you are reading this thinking “ I don’t have an hour to myself” I know where you’re coming from. Trust me, I do, there are some days that I literally wake up, sort the house, go to my 9-5 and then come home to making tea, build Lego with my daughter, walk the dog then I literally clear up and go to bed. Please believe me- I see you and I know that you’re not exaggerating. However, If you are binge watching a Netflix series at the moment, watch 1 less. I’m currently watching Succession on Sky Altantic with my husband. It’s incredible, and it also makes me laugh as I work for my family business to and there are 4 siblings. As soon as my daughter goes to bed I fight all temptation to watch an episode straight away, and I complete an hours training first, or write my next blog, or blog hop… something to build my business. 

There are even sometimes I go into work earlier if I know a training session is happening throughout the day. I go in or get up earlier to do some work so when I’m in work I can access the live training and not feel as guilty. This is me at work, earphone under my hair listening and building new skills!

I also make sure I catch up a lot more at the weekend. Don’t use your “free time” to rest and recover, use it to learn skills to build your dream life. If it’s a priority, treat it like a priority.

Make your first £1. I haven’t made 1p yet. I will do and I’m seeing evidence that people are seeing me more. Building trust takes time, getting known takes time. My tip would be- make it easy first.

Talk about what you are doing with friends and family.  Here is a screen shot of my amazon affiliate account. The 2 orders are me and my husband but 12 people have seen my linked and clicked. Get your small circle on board and everyone will follow.


What I have learnt recently is everyone is interested until they have to pay. Don’t be disheartened if they don’t, just keep building content and putting yourself out there  

Enjoy the journey– This arguably should be the first point. You have to enjoy the journey and what you’re doing. This will work, I don’t have any doubts as I am enjoying the process so much. I look forward to my training and I’m enjoying learning new skills. 

If you love what you do, you’ll never work another day in your life

Extra Value and tips 

  1. To get more engagement on TikTok, ask questions. Give people the opportunity to comment on something. They need a reason to engage. Click here for an example
  2. Get a microphone and a light stand for content- TikTok especially responds well to consistent views but also the quality of the of videos- good lighting, good sound etc. 
  3. I started my journey buy reading this book  The book itself is free, you just pay for postage. I found it really helpful, and gave me a window into affiliate marketing without committing to a course first.  I’d really recommend this if you’re curious.

12 thoughts on “How To Build A Business While Working 9-5

    1. Happy to hear you learned french😄
      I’m still learning to speak English😉
      I like the sentence “don’t get rich quick but get rich forever”. Like you I work on it. I have too a 9 to 5 day job so time aside is difficult to find with the family life as well and all its unpredictable events. Congratulations for your progress you deserve it.

  1. Hmmm. Map out the journey. I’m going to do that! I have my why and my freedom number. I will break it down even more: first sale, first subscribers, etc. There are many steps along the way.
    I’ll have to think about what the steps will be.
    Your journey is very inspiring!
    Thanks for that!

  2. Sarah, Your blog post is refreshingly honest about the allure of quick fixes and the reality of building a successful side hustle. It’s true that success in affiliate marketing takes time and dedication, not instant gratification. Setting a freedom number and committing to it is a solid plan for financial independence. Your personal story about overcoming challenges adds depth and motivation. Thanks for the practical tips and encouragement to enjoy the journey along the way! Thanks, Atif

  3. You are an absolute breath of fresh air, Sarah! Your dedication to getting your business up and running, in spite of all the responsibilities you have, is not only encouraging, it’s motivating! This isn’t easy work… and it takes time, probably more time than many of us bargained for, but that’s okay. We know the pot of gold at the end of the hard work rainbow. I truly appreciate your mindset with this, and it only helps me in my process… especially when there are times I do get a little discouraged. I cannot WAIT to see your success… and watch you as you climb up that ladder. You’re amazing and it’s enjoyable to witness!

    And lastly, I would pay good money to hear you sing Dolly’s “9-5” (with the country twang and everything) with that cute British accent you have! It would be PRICELESS! Dolly and I both agree… juss sayin’

  4. Very inspiring, working the 9 to 5, dedicating at least an hour a day, and you have your daughter to take care of and drive everywhere! You should be so proud of yourself.

    It is so hard to work full time, usually a 9 to 5 because it is more than 8 hours; in the States, the typical shift is 8.5, so you can take the required lunch you don’t get paid for, then the community time unless you’re lucky enough to work from home. I started a new job this week, and the expectation is a 50-hour work week (salary job). I was determined to attend the live class with Dean, which meant waking up at 430, then heading off to work not getting home until 7 PM, but I did it, and although exhausted, it is also exhilarating, working towards making my dreams come true with just an hour a day consistently, motivates me to keep going every day giving it 1000%. It’s the small steps we take every day that add up to big things; it really all comes down to consistency and perseverance! Love reading your blog posts and watching your journey!

  5. I.LOVE.THIS! There is a lot of truth to this post and so much to take in and unpack – all good unpacking! You have a gift for getting things done and are truly an inspiration how you manage your hectic life and still remain positive. And, I am a fan of not only your blog, but your TikTok videos. Simply GREATNESS! I love Dolly and can’t get 9 to 5 out of my head, but that’s not really a bad thing. In September, I found myself out of a job and not working 9 to 5. It has been a challenge, but I am confident that persistence will pay off. I wish you much success!

  6. Sarah,
    I can certainly relate to working a lot and trying to find time to work on your business. I am currently working 2 jobs but I know that in order to succeed I MUST find that minimum 1 hour a day. I just love the fact that you listened how to build your skills while you were at work.

  7. I know all too well the stresses and time constraints of working a traditional 9-5 (although, for me, it’s 8-5) and trying to build a business. I am an avid New York Ranger fan as well, so when it’s hockey season, you will find me watching games on the regular, and that sucks quite a bit of time out of my day several times a week during hockey season. It’s my guilty pleasure in life. I still manage to put in about 8=10 hours a week on my business, and of course, it is extremely slow, or at least it feels that way. Quite honestly, though, I have come a long way in 6 months of building my owned asset and participating in all the training I can. I have to remind myself that this is not an overnight thing. No matter how fast or slow it may feel, I have to know that I am going in a forward motion, and eventually, I will begin to see results financially. Great blog post… you are doing amazingly well.

  8. Hi Sarah,
    First and foremost, thank you for reminding us that success in business development requires a long-term commitment. Ultimately, our efforts will pay off for years to come. I can personally relate to the daily grind of the 9-5 routine, which often stretches into 10 hours or more. That’s precisely why we must push ourselves even further and invest extra time to break free from this cycle. Congratulations on crafting such an insightful blog. Wishing you every success in your journey.
    Ezequiel Wells recently posted…Why Choose Affiliate Marketing? Reflections from My Daily LifeMy Profile

  9. Sarah,

    This is such a refreshing take on navigating the side hustle world! It’s easy to get caught up in the allure of overnight success stories, but your grounded approach is a breath of fresh air. Building a sustainable income stream takes dedication and time, and your insights on setting realistic goals and enjoying the journey resonate deeply. Plus, your story about using negativity as fuel for success is truly inspiring. Thanks for sharing your wisdom and practical tips—it’s just the motivation many of us need to start chasing our dreams with purpose and determination!

    You got this!

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