This is the fifth post in the Transitioning to Entrepreneurship and What to Expect or Employee to Entrepreneur series.

One of the key challenges in transitioning from employee to entrepreneur is being free of the 9 to 5. While being an entrepreneur sounds like shedding the shackles of cubedom and achieving true freedom it isn’t necessarily so. There is a bit of an adjustment period required to settle into life beyond the cube farm, particularly early on when your office and home are the same place.

If you don’t want to work you don’t have to. Many people really struggle with this aspect of running their own business. Having your own business requires a certain level of discipline to make sure you work when you have to and achieve results. The good part is you have the freedom to decide when to work. The bad part is no matter what the stuff is that needs doing, it has to get done. Freedom and discipline need to be balanced.

Within a few months of running your business from home you quickly develop cabin fever, which usually results in going to the local coffee shop to work. Been there, done that, got the T-shirt. You can also develop conjunctive pajama-itis. You really do need to get out of the house and build some sort of separation of work and home. Having work and home as the same place often doesn’t work out.

“No 9 to 5” means focusing on “results and adapting” to changing circumstances. It is less about the amount of time you put in and more about getting the job done.

– Ian Graham