I had such a great week! I met up with friends for coffee, spent time on my business, went to a few yoga classes, enjoyed “me” time, golfed and hung out at the beach. I am able to do all these things on my own schedule. Yes, I am able to plan every week the way I want! I have what so many people want - time freedom. What is time freedom?
Time freedom means not being restricted by your employer’s work hours. Time freedom lets you set your own flexible schedule and work whenever you want.
I know there are many teachers, including you, wishing they had time freedom right now. According to a 2012 survey, teachers work 10-11 hours a day; with the new obstacles and demands teachers have now, I’m sure that has definitely increased. I wanted to share with you this timely, must-hear message from Amanda who was one of my guests in my Virtual Summit. Amanda was a teacher and took the big step to start her own business and she is loving the time freedom it is allowing her.
Let’s take a listen to how Amanda talks about why she went from teaching to becoming her own boss, and how her time freedom changed, and yours can too! This is to inspire you and maybe even take a
Suzanne: Amanda, can you tell our audience a little about your background and why you left teaching?
Amanda: Definitely! I was an art education major at Georgia with a focus on graphic design, but I was really excited about teaching art when I left college. I was fortunate enough to teach at one of the best middle schools in Georgia; it's a fantastic school. I loved the kids, I loved lots about it.
But after a few years of teaching, I found myself wanting more freedom in several
areas. Time was one of the biggest. I saw my friends and my now-husband; they all had corporate jobs, but they worked for flexible, fun, innovative companies where they had very flexible Personal Time Off and generous work-from-home days. I felt like I was missing out on what everyone else had.
It really hit me right before I left teaching; I was already getting in that mode. And then my husband earned a free trip to Hawaii for both of us through his work. Unfortunately, it fell the week after my Spring Break, so I had to take five unpaid days. Of course, I wasn't going to miss out on the trip, but it really hit me: people talk so much about teachers having the summer off—and of course, that's a fantastic perk—but people don't realize we have zero time off during the year.
Suzanne: Yeah, absolutely. I remember it was, “Okay. Do I write lesson plans—which need to be thorough and extensive, so the kids don't go crazy—or do I just stay in the classroom because it's easier than writing all these lesson plans?”
And unfortunately, I know that's what many of our teachers face; sometimes it's harder to take time off from work than it is in other careers, other jobs.
Amanda: I recall one day I was not feeling well at work. I can't remember what the situation was, but it was during my planning period—I didn't have any kids. I didn't have medicine; I needed to go to the drugstore for it. I remember having to log 30 minutes of sick leave—to go to the drugstore! I was like, “This is insane! I'm an adult; I should be trusted to go do things and be back on time and handle my own things.” I felt like I wasn't trusted with the little bit of time I had.
It was a hard decision, but a little over three years ago I left education, started my own graphic design business, and never looked back. It was the best decision ever.
I bet you can relate to Amanda and the feeling of being trapped in your teacher calendar.
When you’re done watching the rest of the video, click below to take a short freedom quiz to find out how you currently score on your own time freedom.
Let’s go back now and have a listen to Amanda’s Laptop Lifestyle, that you can have too!
Suzanne: How do you do it? Could you tell us how many vacations you take in a year, or just tell us how this works? Because for many teachers, they’re stuck traveling during the highest peak times, when it's most expensive, and you don't have that anymore. You have that kind of luxury; you have time freedom.
Amanda: That's such a great point. I actually counted recently; I'm coming up on my 10th trip of the year. We have 13 planned, and the last is in October. There's two more months after that; I'm sure we'll add something to it.
But I love traveling, and it's typically... There are smaller trips and there are larger trips. Four of this year’s trips were to California (my husband's from the Bay Area) for family weddings. We’re all over the place. I got married in Saint Lucia last May and we were gone for a whole week—that was the one trip where I did not take my computer!
But for the most part, I take my computer everywhere I go—a Laptop Lifestyle! The Internet is very accessible everywhere now, and in places where it's not, I have unlimited Internet on my phone; tethering it to my laptop is actually really fast. I even work from the car. For example, the little mountain town of Chattanooga, Tennessee, is just a couple hours away from Atlanta. My husband works from home as well, and sometimes on Fridays we’ll drive up in the morning—whoever has more morning tasks will ride and do their work. We’ll get there and finish the day—it's great!
Once or twice a year I make it a point to not take my computer—but my wedding was the first time I went completely device-free. I think people understood; “Hey I'm getting married! Don't call me.”
Last year we went to Italy for a week—I didn't take my computer then, either, but I kept email on my phone just for the peace of mind to not get backed up. Otherwise, I always have my laptop with me. That's the hardest part, I think, of being an entrepreneur—figuring out how to detach when you need to.
Suzanne: That's true. But you don't have a 9-to-5 schedule or whatever—the teaching day is different for everyone. You really can work anytime, anywhere, as long as you have an Internet connection. It really is a Laptop Lifestyle you're living! That's fantastic!
So, what do you think? Do you find her story inspirational? Have you ever considered leaving teaching and dreaming of having time freedom--not going to the same place at the same time every day?
Really living life on your own terms! When you are your own boss, you run your own schedule and get to work when it works for you!
If you found this video helpful, I would love to hear from you in the comments below. Give me a thumbs up if you found Amanda’s story inspiring and let yourself start to imagine all the wonderful things you could do with your own time freedom.
Oh, and don’t forget to take The Freedom Quiz now! It will provide you a score so you can see how you rank in time freedom. The link will be below.
Alright, thanks for watching and remember, you can rewrite your future, and I can help!
Stay Savvy my friends!
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