As I got started running my own online marketing business, I was very excited to depart from some scheduling and rigidity that always came with working for someone else. The 8-5 business hours more or less chained at your desk, the need to show up at a certain time every day, the lack of ability to get outside during most daylight hours and be active, BLACH. I am antsy and stubborn, so feeling like I do not control my own daily schedule for most of my waking hours to earn my paycheck bugged me more than the average Joe. In fact, the last company I worked for gave me lots of extra flexibility, and it still was not enough (to no fault of theirs…this was a “me” thing)!

In my first few weeks of running your own schedule, here are a few fun learnings:

1. Sleeping in is AWESOME!

Hands down, a top benefit. If you stay up later than normal, you can sleep later than normal. Countless studies show that happy people sleep more, and I enjoy being a happy nerd!

2. Sleeping in With Clients Waiting on Deadlines is NOT AWESOME!

Ummm, if I choose to sleep in, it’s not all roses. Most of my clients operate on business hours, so delivering things at 7pm instead of 4pm because I started my work day 3 hours after the rest of the corporate world does NOT always fly. That does not mean I have to conform to 8-5 all of the time, but it means that when I make scheduling choices, I have to review my task list and plan ahead. Can’t just willy-nilly fall off the radar in the middle of the day!

3. Running & Playing Outside During the Day is SO COOL!

Running ShoesGoing running at 10am when the sun is just starting to warm up, before the afternoon clouds roll in, and when nobody else is around is an absolutely fantastic perk to this lifestyle. I live in Colorado for a reason, and now I get to enjoy it even more!

4. Being Old Enough to Overdo the Running SUCKS!

It took me all of 2 weeks to overdo it, and now I am back staring longingly at my running shoes. Ok, that’s a lie, I walk around in them all day to make myself feel better. It does not work.

5. Home With Your Dogs All Day ROCKS!

Dogs at the OfficeMy dogs are loving this new phase – they get walked more, get more snacks, hang out with me all day, and for me, they are great company! I have someone to vent to and play with whenever I need it — man’s best friend!

6. Dogs Barking Relentlessly on a Sales Call is NOT GOOD!

Since I worked remote on occasion with my previous company, I had plans set up for scheduled calls to get the dogs to a quiet room or outside where they would not interrupt a client conference. A key factor to this is SCHEDULED calls where I have 5 minutes prior to the call to put the dogs outside and away! When I start making and taking impromptu phone calls, the dogs do not understand that the dog food bill gets paid by my ability to be heard on the phone. They still think it is extremely important to notify me via relentless barking anytime someone walks within 50 feet of our territory, aka, the sidewalk, the alley, the neighbors, the list goes on.

Running your own schedule is a fun and rewarding part of your own business, and I am having a blast, barking dogs, broken body and all!

Owner of Lawton Digital Marketing, helping small business owners establish and grow online. Lauren is always trying the latest tools and technology from project management to photo storage. Lauren loves to run, inline skate, bike, ski, and compete in races.