From Side Hustle To Full-time In 12 months


I got fired from my job and it was the BEST thing that ever happened to me. And I wanted to share with you my story on how I managed to go from side hustle to full-time in my business in just 12 months.

If you had asked me one year ago if I’d be full-time in my business I would have LAUGHED in your face! (and then probably have said you’re a crazy person for even thinking that).

When we start our businesses we always have one thought. How do I make this darn thing a full-time gig?! Isn’t that the dream?! I wanted it SO badly but never thought it would happen so quickly.

And so I wanted to dissect my journey and lay it out straight for you as to HOW I actually did it and give you my secrets. I have a rule. Learn everything you can from those who have what you want,. Let’s dive in!

From side hustle to full-time in less than 12 months

#1 I worked on my mindset

When I FIRST started my business, I did NOT thing that working on my mindset was important at all. Legit. I thought that if I worked hard and long enough that I would eventually make it. WRONG WRONG WRONG!

I TRULY believe that the secret ingredient to success is to work on your mindset EVERY SINGLE DAY! The thing is, I didn’t feel like I DESERVED the life I wanted so badly. I had a limiting mindset and it was hurting my success.

I’m part of an incredible community on Instagram where I saw amazing women crushing their goals, going full-time and it made me believe, if they can do it, why can’t I then? It suddenly seemed easier than what I had thought.

Thought number #1: It’s NOT as hard as you think it is to build a business online and make it your life’s work. GET THAT OUT OF YOUR HEAD RIGHT NOW!

Going through high school and uni, I was conditioned to believe that I had to get a degree (or two), get a corporate job in a big firm and that would be my life (and that I would be happy there). WRONG WRONG WRONG… again!

So, I GET why people think it’s hard to build a business online these days. Because we’re conditioned to THINK it is growing up. It’s time to change your mindset on all of that babe, surround yourself with people who ARE doing it and believe in yourself.

#2 I Focused On One Social Media Platform

I built my business from Instagram. That’s where majority of my clients and digital product sales come from.

And yep, when I started out I tried to be everywhere. I had FB, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram all going at once, ALL while working full-time. I feel like I wasted so much time trying to do it all.

I KNEW my dream clients were on Instagram so I stopped Twitter and FB (and Pinterest for while) and solely focused on Instagram. And yep, it freaking paid off!

How to book clients on Instagram

#3 I Showed Up, A LOT and Shared My Personal Life

If you’re a service based business, I’m telling you right now if you’re NOT showing up on stories, on your feed with your FACE, you’re going to make it a lot harder for yourself to find success on Instagram.

If I can’t see someone’s face on their feed, I actually won’t follow them or engage. Because I WANT to know who the ACTUAL person is behind the business. I want to get to know them on a deeper level outside of what they do in their biz.

And I opened up! I shared a lot about my personal life with people on my feed and my stories. Nothing to me is off limits (well, maybe a couple of things) but I’m pretty much an open book. And you know what this does? It connects with the HUMAN who is behind your dream client.

People are drawn to people who they find a similarity with and the business world is NO different. Sure, you’ve still got to sell your products and services, but you NEED to build that connection with someone OUTSIDE of your business. This truly is a HUGE part to my success.

Thought #2: If you’re scared to show your face, think about the WORST thing that would happen if you did this. Seriously! Think about all the business you ARE missing out on by not showing up. It’s probably A LOT! So, having said that … here’s some tough love. Get over your fear QUICKLY of showing your face and talking on camera. Because you’re doing yourself and your business a HUGE disservice by not doing this.

#4 I Refocused My Energy

You know how the saying goes. You’re the product of the 5 closest people to you. When I was working full-time in finance I was surrounded by a lot of negativity. My boss gave me a lot of anxiety as he would pull me in for impromptu meetings to talk about whether or not I was happy there, what my career intentions were (they knew I had a business), and whether or not I felt like I fit in.

I knew I had to get rid of those people who brought down my energy and one day I was pushed over the edge with another impromptu meeting and decided on that day I was going to quit and work part-time somewhere else.

Moving from full-time to part-time allowed me to double my income in my business. Purely because I had MORE time to work on it.

Thought #3: Be mindful of where you put your energy. For that is what you will attract into your life.

3 months into my part-time role, I was still anxious, it made me stressed and I felt like I had mentally checked out long before I got fired. It was draining my energy. I HATED feeling stressed every day I went there. I HATED feeling anxious for fear of making a mistake at work (which was part of the reason I got fired).

I knew I had to place my energy elsewhere. And the thing is, who knows when I would have made that decision to leave. So the universe made it for me.

Thought #4: We’re often ready for things well before we actually take action. Stay open minded and listen to your gut. If you KNOW deep down the time is right, take that leap. It will be the best thing you ever do.

#5 I knew Who I Wanted To Serve and I Went Out And Found Them

The age old question, HOW DO I FIND CLIENTS? And more specifically, how do I find clients on Instagram?

I found for me FB groups didn’t quite work. I hated the thought of competing with other women on a post like a freaking bidding ware “pick me, pick me!”. It feels unnatural. Sure, I’ll still put myself out there, but scrolling through FB groups trying to offer value and engage every day was not the best use of my time in terms of finding clients.

So, how did I find clients on Instagram? I built relationships. I engaged A LOT (still do) and I get OUTSIDE of my community on a regular basis. Yep, I use hashtags to find potential clients. That’s usually the best way. And I use my Instagram Engagement Formula to do this. This has worked for me countless times which is why I made it into an ebook so I could help other businesses do the same.

Also, just as a side note, I have spent $0 on ads for my business. This has ALL been organic growth.

Your Takeaway

Overall, it was a combination of me believing in myself enough that I COULD actually do this and getting rid of old beliefs about our working society; working my butt off and taking the time to find people to build relationships with on Instagram; surrounding myself with other women who inspire me and are doing what I want to do; and showing up consistently and showing my face on socials.

I know this sounds cliche, but if I can do this, YOU can too! Once you start opening up your mind to all the possibilities that are out there for you, and you put all your energy into your passion, that’s where the magic happens. Obviously, be smart about your decision and ensure that you CAN financially support yourself if you choose to go full-time. And to make the process easier, move from full-time work down to part-time work, and eventually the rest will fall into place.

If you have any questions or you’d just love to chat, leave a comment below, or pop me a DM over on Instagram here and I’d be more than happy to help you out in any possible way.

Talk soon babe,

Amanda xx


Hi, I'm Amanda!

I’m a product photographer based in Brisbane Australia specialising in creating stunning visuals for beauty, skincare and lifestyle brands. It’s actually kinda an obsession really. I also teach other aspiring brand photographers how to break into the industry and build a successful business via my online course Become A Brand Photographer.

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