Creating a Productive Freelancing Routine
I work from home a lot and in my experience having a productive freelancing routine that keeps me motivated is crucial to being successful. Over time I have worked a few key practices into my routine that I have found to be super helpful.
Set the Tone for Your Day
I always feel better when I’m able to ease into my day in a relaxed manner vs rushing to get started. Giving yourself time to do something relaxing for yourself before you get started, can set the tone for your entire day. I get up in the morning, make myself a coffee and then try to sit down to read a book, meditate or squeeze in a work out before I get my day started.
Choose the Best Time to Work
If you have the option, choose a time of day to work when your creative juices are flowing best. I am most productive in the morning so I get up a bit early to do my relaxing activity and then I spend the first half of my day getting things done. If you work better at night, make sure you spend time in the day doing something for yourself so you are motivated to work through the evening.
I cannot stress this one enough. Instead of just crawling onto the couch in your pj’s with your laptop and starting your work (something Urban Dictionary calls Pyjama Syndrome) get dressed and ready for the day. Showering and dressing for the day is energizing and can give you a boost of confidence. When you look and feel your best, you’ll be motivated to do your best work.
There is interesting research being done with hospital patients around what people call “blue pajama syndrome” or “PJ paralysis” that shows wearing pajamas can reinforce feelings of being unwell and slow down recovery times.
Break Up Your Day
It’s important to take time to step away from your work and take breaks throughout the day. When we’re in other working environments like offices, restaurants or shops we have opportunities throughout the day to interact with others. To remain productive, schedule time for your breaks and get out of the house for a walk, phone a friend, listen to a podcast etc. You’ll come back to your work re-energized.
Work Within Your Set Hours
This took me a long time to figure out and I haven’t perfected this but… set your hours and work within them! Only work between your predetermined hours on the days you’ve laid out to help you with your work life balance. Know when to pull the plug each day so you can mentally shift out of work mode.
- When you get home, pay full attention to whoever’s waiting for you.
- Be firm with yourself about leaving on time.
- Shut off notifications after a certain time of day to avoid distraction.
Hopefully some of these practices will help you create a productive freelancing routine. What practices have you worked into your daily routine that help you stay motivated to “get shit done”?