Lots of people talk about freelancing in the way they make it sound like it’s always a vacation. As a freelancer, I can somehow attest to that, since I always find to have the option of putting off work and take a nap instead. Very few people to no one won’t tell us the biggest problem of freelancing – how to get your work done throughout the day.
Let’s face it – the comfort of our home tempts us to just sit back, relax and do nothing. This happens a lot to me, and whenever I do it, I always find that I have to pay for it in the end. Either I don’t sleep at all to reach a deadline or I don’t have money in my bank account. Worse, both.
So what can you do to keep yourself motivated and finish your work without cramming for the deadline? Here are a few simple tips.
1. Have an early morning. I’ve read somewhere that waking up at 6 am helps you get motivated to do heavy tasks for the day. This has been so hard for me to achieve since I am on certain medications that give me late nights. But will power is indeed, powerful. Make it a habit to wake up as early as possible everyday to get more things done throughout the day.
2. A few stretching and a glass of fruit juice does the trick. I’m not sure if you’ve experienced this, but there are mornings when you feel like you’re so tired and feel so heavy you think you can’t lift a finger and start working. Try stretching a little bit and drink some fruit juice (usually orange juice or anything citrus-ey) to make you feel refreshed and energized.
3. Make a schedule for the day. Even if you’re working at home, creating a schedule as if you’re in a full time job helps big time. Assign a certain time and make it your work-begins-at time. And make sure there’s also work-ends-at time, just like when you’re in an office.
4. Take time to relax. This is the beauty of working from home. You get to take coffee breaks like, every hour. Make sure you don’t ogle on your computer all day long. This is important: AVOID WORKING MEALS! Go to the kitchen for lunch, peep out the window, go to the veranda for coffee. Your computer table is just for work, okay? Okay.
5. Rewards never fail. In my personal experience, gone were the days when I would get motivated by higher salary. I no longer look forward to lots of money, but the things I can buy with it makes me pretty much excited. Treat yourself after a big project – go to an expensive Italian restaurant all by yourself or watch a movie or go out of town and look forward to these to keep yourself motivated. Keep in mind that although we are freelancers and we have all the time in the world in our hands, we still work so we need that much awaited break!
6. Self-discipline and positive perspective is the vital key. Of course, if you can’t discipline yourself, then you won’t be able to do anything. For me, it’s focusing on the positive things that work. Don’t forget to meditate and be thankful for the new day and think of the good deeds you can contribute today. It makes me feel good and somehow productive, too.