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How to Be Your Own Boss

Last updated: August 3, 2023

We all long for a day when we don’t need to show up to a stressful job on a Monday morning. The freedom of setting your own schedule, working on projects that inspire you, and not needing to report to anyone doesn’t need to be a wishful dream. You don’t need to be born into a wealthy family or win the lottery to build the life you want on your own terms. There is an alternative to a 9 to 5 job, and it involves starting your own business. Whether you’re self-employed doing business coaching or running a real estate empire is up to you. You can choose to be your own boss in any niche.

In this article, we’re going to break down how to be your own boss so you can escape the world of traditional work.

1. Think about why you want to be your own boss
2. Brainstorm various scalable side hustles
3. Start market research
4. Plan out a budget
5. Create a one-page business development plan and set goals
6. Build a business website
7. Create a sales pitch and put yourself out there
8. Focus on social media performance
9. Make tweaks as you learn
10. Submit your resignation

How to Be Your Own Boss

1. Think about why you want to be your own boss

If you’ve ever thought to yourself, “I should be my own boss,” there was probably a breaking point. It could be looking at your paycheck and realizing it’s not enough to afford a home, food, bills, and a few nice-to-haves. It could be getting put on a performance plan after pouring your blood, sweat, and tears into a company for years and experiencing burnout. Maybe you’ve just become a new parent and want to spend more time with your family. There’s no right or wrong reason to search “how to be your own boss” on Google.

Understanding why you want to be your own boss will be crucial when deciding what business to embark on. For example, if your goal is to spend more time with your family, you probably want to choose a passive income side hustle rather than freelance work where you trade your time for money so you have more free time. If your goal is to earn immediate and guaranteed money that you can use to buy a property, you will do the opposite. There are so many ways to make money online, but you need to choose the income stream that’s best for your personal situation. So, your first decision as a boss is to really get down to the basics and be honest with yourself. What’s your real reason for wanting to work in self-employment jobs instead of reporting to a management team at a traditional company?

2. Brainstorm various scalable side hustles

Coming up with self-employed jobs doesn’t have to be hard. You can find countless side hustles for introverts or any type of area of focus. You’re able to find a side hustle idea, no matter what your interests are. Here are a few you can try out when you’re starting a new business on your own.

  • Digital downloads business
  • Freelance writing business
  • Your own blog
  • Investor
  • Virtual Assistant
  • AI business
  • Affiliate website
  • SaaS business
  • Online tutoring
  • Personal finance company
  • Custom photography site
  • A brick-and-mortar shop
  • Membership site
  • YouTube channel
  • Cybersecurity business
  • Mobile app business
  • Coaching business (spiritual, sales, family, etc.)
  • A fitness training business
  • An ecommerce business
  • Real estate business
  • Public speaking like Tony Robbins
  • Entrepreneur media company
  • Services that help people find jobs or find love
  • Professional development life coach

Brainstorm various scalable side hustles

3. Start market research

To leave behind your career and be your own boss, you need to ensure that the business you’re hoping to start is something people want to pay for. This is the time to figure out what your unique selling proposition is. How can you add your own spin to what people want? For example, suppose people are talking about AI a lot, and you want to start a photography business. In that case, you might want to start an AI stock photo website where you charge people for unlimited photos with a monthly subscription. You can contact popular blogs to see if this service is something they’d be interested in paying for. If a few people sign up, you know it’s worth pursuing. If someone tells you they prefer free stock photos, you might offer free images under a free plan with ads to monetize your website. Knowing what people will or won’t pay for can help you better understand what to sell and how to sell it.

4. Plan out a budget

Before you become your own boss, you need to set aside some savings for emergencies and also make enough recurring money to leave your job comfortably. Budgeting your spending when money is coming in will be crucial to whether or not you can live on less money. As people earn more money, lifestyle creep tends to happen where they spend more than they invest or save. Knowing how to live on less income is hard for many people, so creating a budget on a smaller income is a must to ensure you succeed long-term. The goal should be to look at your finances and assess what the numbers need to look like to easily afford mortgage payments, bills, save an emergency fund, and invest your money back into the business but also back to yourself.

Plan out a budget

5. Create a one-page business development plan and set goals

The goal of a one-page business plan is to quickly understand what strategies you’ll execute to grow your business, what obstacles you might come across, what you’ve got going for you, and what your overall goals are. The rookie mistake most new entrepreneurs make is they overestimate what they can accomplish in the first year. You probably won’t make $1,000,000 your first year, but that doesn’t mean you won’t hit it eventually. Businesses take time to grow. Set realistic goals on a timeline that you can actually achieve. Be very specific about the exact dollar amount or KPI you plan to achieve and by what date. Breaking up annual goals into weekly goals can help you stay focused on achieving what you want.

6. Build a business website

When you start your own business as a boss, it’s crucial to have your own website. If you’re selling digital products like selling coaching services or even selling courses online, you should use a free platform like Payhip that allows you to sell products online without a monthly subscription. Unlike most platforms that charge a monthly fee even if you don’t make any sales, Payhip only charges a 5% transaction fee per sale on its Free Forever plan.


Join over 130,000 sellers who have launched their online businesses with Payhip

So, in those early days when your sales are a bit more scattered or unsteady, you can rest assured that you’ve built a lean business. When tracking goals, having your own website is a huge milestone. Don’t get distracted by things like logo creation or website design; you can easily make a professional website on your own. And a simple text-based logo is usually quick to design and easy to read. Being your own boss is all about wealth mastery. When designing your website, think about getting something out there fast so you can focus on growing your business rather than exerting all your energy on website design.

Build a business website

7. Create a sales pitch and put yourself out there

When you transition from working under a boss to being your own boss, you need to build hype for your brand on your own. Marketing and sales are crucial to your success. Wearing the hat of the salesperson needs to be something you’re okay doing. You can’t hide beyond costly advertising budgets or hope people find you organically. Creating a sales pitch and pitching businesses or customers to attract more sales will be a deal breaker of whether or not you can succeed long-term. Keep your sales pitch short and to the point, three or four sentences at most. The first sentence should introduce who you are and what your main value proposition is. The second sentence should include what you offer them (your deal) and what you want from them. The third sentence should be a question to close them and elicit a response from them. Sending out personalized emails like this will help you market your new business so you can generate sales from day one. You can send sales pitches to make money on Instagram through direct messaging or via website contact forms and email.

8. Focus on social media performance

Being your own boss requires you to develop leadership skills or, at a minimum, be a thought leader. Having a digital marketing strategy that involves video creation for YouTube, TikTok, and Instagram will be a lot of work but putting yourself out there will be fundamental to your success online. Beyond this, you’ll also want to post updates about your business on LinkedIn, sharing stories of the highs and lows of being an entrepreneur. You should focus more time on content creation and less time-consuming content on social media. You can read and respond to comments but don’t obsess over negativity. You’re a professional now. Being your own boss means you need to rise above the critics and still push on. Grow your accounts, and deliver value in your niche, but don’t get lost in vanity metrics. Ask yourself, “Is my performance on social media driving sales for my business?” If yes, keep going.

Focus on social media performance

9. Make tweaks as you learn

The secret to success in business is to constantly experiment when learning something new. For example, if you’re pitching a business to attract new clients, trying pitches in 10 different styles of varying lengths will help you figure out what type of pitch helps bring in more clients. Same with advertising, experimenting with different copy, videos, pictures, and so on will help you figure out what type of content converts best. Approaching your business like an experimenter trying to find the winning result is what will keep you excited and motivated. When you approach your business this way, it’ll be easier for you to make changes, pivots, and so on as you gather more information. You’ll know from experience if a pivot will help or hurt you when you’re constantly experimenting with different methods. And pivoting in the right way at the right time can be the key to your success when you’re your own boss.

10. Submit your resignation

As you start achieving success in your side hustles and grow your savings to support you financially as you embark on your next chapter, it’s time to let go of the career you’ve been building at your employer. Even if you have no intention of ever working at this company ever again, try leaving the company on positive terms. You never know which of your co-workers will send you contracts or opportunities that’ll help you further succeed as an entrepreneur. Events like this are actually pretty common, and they’re always the people you least expect. So, take the time to tell your team members what you appreciate about working with them, be friendly to your boss, and don’t disparage the company online after your departure. Business Mastery 101 is all about growing your network, so add your colleagues to LinkedIn on your last day. And get ready to embark on your new adventure.

Submit your resignation


Is it hard to be your own boss?

It’s easier to be your own boss than to report to someone else if you’re a motivated, accountable, and structured person. Being your own boss is hard when you don’t establish a routine that encourages you to be productive, healthy, and put in the work. If you can avoid distractions, such as doom-scrolling or texting throughout the day, it’ll be easier to be successful as your own boss.

What are the pros and cons of being your own boss?

The pros of being your own boss are more control over what you work on and what you charge, freedom to set your own hours and work from anywhere, ability to write off expenses, wearing multiple hats and learning new skills fast, and you build an asset that can be passed down to your family. The cons of being your own boss are that you can experience loneliness, unpredictable income, a lack of accountability if you are not self-disciplined, and if you can’t handle the stress from people relying on you.

Why do people want to be their own boss?

People often want to be their own boss because they realize they pour so much energy, heart, and passion into their jobs and end up feeling unappreciated by their bosses. As a result, they experience burnout or the “Sunday Scaries” each week. Working hard with no recognition results in people wondering if they really need to work like this for the next thirty years of their lives, so they look for alternatives.

Is it better to be your own boss or work for someone else?

It’s better to be your own boss in the long run than work for someone else. When you are your own boss, you have full control of your income streams. You can build multiple income streams to create a financial safety net for yourself. When you work for someone else, you could experience layoffs, pay raises that don’t match inflation, and burnout.


The end of your traditional career is the start of your next chapter as a boss. Venturing out on your own can be a scary but highly rewarding experience that allows you to develop new skills, increase your income, and build something that can become your legacy. Entrepreneurs know how hard it was for them to take that first step, but once they get a taste of what’s actually possible, they become hooked and happy with their decision. Your business might start out as a side hustle, but with some research, marketing, and dedication to consistently work on it, it can become a flourishing business that allows you to escape the 9 to 5 for good.

It’s time to stop thinking about your goals and put in the work. Take that step towards entrepreneurship by building a website with Payhip for free today.


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