This week, we have another featured Virtual Assistant from the Philippines. I mentioned her story in one of my first blog posts – 10 Virtual Assistant Myths Debunked. Read myth #10, she was the VA I was referring to.
Ana Margarita A. Olar is a part-time Content Writer and a Social Media Manager. She is also a full-time registered Nurse.
In this interview, Ann shares her:
- journey from working as an OFW Nurse to becoming a Virtual Assistant
- productivity tips in juggling 2 jobs
- source of inspiration and motivation
- and more…
How did you get started as a Virtual Assistant?
I started back when I was in Saudi where I worked as a Nurse. I feel homesick and I spent most of my time on Facebook and Youtube. I spent almost 6 to 10 hours every day online to keep my brain busy and numb from sadness. Working at home started in an idea: what if I can earn money by working online instead of wasting it on FB?
I started searching online. Sadly, what I searched were all scams. Back then, I think, very few people know that they can work online. Due to extreme homesickness, I usually read inspirational blogs. Oprah, Dr. Oz, and Tony Robbins became my best friends. Then, I found Bro. Bo’s blog; I got addicted reading his blog and archives. One of his newsletters said that there was this man named Jomar Hilario who can teach people how to make money online. That was a “this is it, pancit” moment for me.
I would follow Jomar Hilario and read his blog. I would also watch every webinar and recordings. That time, I still don’t have my own laptop because I am still paying debts and sending money to my family. Not to mention that I don’t have my internet own connection. I just asked my kind and friendly Arabian neighbor to let me access their Wifi. I started my learning journey with a smartphone.
After saving some money, I bought a laptop and invested in Jomar Hilario’s downloadable seminar to become a Virtual Assistant. In that seminar, there is an assignment which I finished in less than 2 months.
The seminar helped me to find my first client; the second and the third. I started working as a part-time writer and social media marketer while working as a Nurse full-time . After 2 years of working abroad, I decided to go back home.
Here in the Philippines, I adopted the same formula: work full-time as a Nurse and work part-time as a Social Media manager and content writer.
After six months of having an online business that worked well; I decided to push harder and do it full time. I was so excited at first. However, I realized that I can’t remove the nurse’s blood in my vein. So I decided to go back again in my vocation.
Today, I work full-time in Public Health Services as a Nurse and part-time as a content writer and social media manager.
How do you juggle being a nurse and being a VA? Any productivity tips?
Everyday, I work extra 2 hours for my VA job, 4 hours on Saturdays and total rest and leisure on Sundays. I believe that everyone should not rely only on their monthly salary and should have a side income. Workout, proper diet, and prayer keep my stress in control.
This is how my usual day looks like:
- 4:30 am to 6:30 am – Virtual Assistant Job
- 6:30 am to 8:00 am – Prepare for my work as a Nurse
- 8:00 am to 5:00 pm – Nurse Work
- 6:00 pm to 7:00 pm – Work out
- 7:00 pm – Dinner
- 8:30 pm- Devotion and Sleep
As you see, I cut off watching TV series. My TV leisure is the Kalyeserye ( Eat Bulaga) during lunch breaks.
Another secret that is a must share is to write what the priority task everyday. Before starting the day, I asked for God’s Divine Grace to help me finish the tasks and do it excellently. It worked!
Do you see yourself working as a VA for a long time?
Two years ago, I had a life experiment and embraced the full-time VA lifestyle. However, I realized that I can’t just stay at home. Being a nurse is in my blood and taking care of people in clinical setting is what makes me happy.
I see being a VA as other creative way that helped me to send my brother to college and keep us going financially.
In the long term, my plan is to set up online autopilot businesses and affiliate businesses. My dream is also to boost my nursing career online by putting up health websites, writing books, creating seminars, and speak on events.
Who inspires you the most?
First, I believe that discovering how to earn money online is God’s special gift to me. He is my number 1 VA hero.
Third, I owe a lot to the member of VA community where I joined. The Pinoy 500 PRO and LaVA ( Lakwacherang VA) inspires me every day. You see, VAs have different mindset when it comes to self development. I love it when they believe in my dreams and encourage me to aim higher.
If you’re attending a speed networking, how would you define your VA services and skills in 30 seconds?
I am a Content Writer and a Social Media Manager. I provide quality content for blog owners who focus on the topic of health, finance, personal development and internet marketing. My mission is to help blog owners and businesses enjoy the benefits of connecting with their target market online. My vision is to see businesses grow; connect them with the right people who will love to have their products and services.
To follow Ann and her work, visit her website or send her email at anamargaritaolar[@]gmail.com
If you’d want to get started working from home, read the Ultimate Guide to Becoming a Virtual Assistant.
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