There will always be those times when you feel like you’re just not getting enough done.
On average, 9 to 5 people work 45 hours a week — more if you belong in the field of advertising, design, and multimedia. Most of the time, your mind wanders, lost in thought, trying to come up with more ideas or shortcuts, or even nagging you with a problem.
We all wish we could accomplish a lot more in a shorter time with as much as we can. Then again, we dread being workaholics just the same.
Freelancers often look for work-life balance in the mix of good pay with reasonable workload. It’d be great to get work done during the times you are productive and get the proper amount of time to rest and get creative.
Here are some tips from some of our most productive freelancers and employers:
Keep it Together
Start your day calm and composed. It gets easier to do the right things and focus once you get settled in to yourself. Don’t start your day reacting to emails, missed phone calls, deadlines, and memos.
Try waking up without looking at your phone – better yet, turn your phone off the night before. Give yourself somewhere around an hour or two – Do your morning ritual, grab a cup of coffee, and just breathe, relax, and feel yourself wake up in a refreshed state of mind.
Reducing anxiety at the early part of your day equates to being more productive for the rest of the day.
Research shows how you start your day has great impact on how you will react to tackling situations and problems. Studies have proven that being happy where you work – office, at home, or at a coffee shop, relates greatly to being more creative, productive, and efficient therefore means achieving more success.
Take less time about trying to sort out problems of/at work and more time on keeping it together.
Entertainment is Called Entertainment for a Reason
If your task is something that requires focus, get rid of all forms of distractions.
- Your best friend’s drunk photos last night.
- The neighbor’s cat did an eggroll.
- This cute teacup pig will make you want 3 of your own.
We are in a generation where everything that surrounds us is a form of entertainment. Modernity has brought forth all forms of “interesting” things to our mobile phones. Every single thing we do always has a shiny, attention seeking, mesmerizing alternative we would rather be doing over graphs, reports, and other snooze inducing tasks.
The solution to the problem is to unplug anything and everything that may call for your attention. Go acoustic. Unplug the flat screen, turn off data, switch off the modem, play only music with instruments, have your best friend look after your dog or gerbil, secure anything and everything that might topple over. Lock down and focus.
Set Yourself Up to be Productive the Night Before
Waking up to blaring alarms, whistles, emergency tasks, and deadlines begs for more and more of your attention as opposed to being able to do the right things at the right times.
Set your goals the night before in order to reinforce the important tasks to be done. Everything else outside of those should be considered secondary. Establish rules and rituals before, during, and after working. Once primary tasks are concluded and you have enough time to do secondary ones, have a go at it. Otherwise, if the things cannot be accomplished for that day, set it for tomorrow.
Give yourself time to rest. Let work be work during working hours.
You are more likely to accomplish tasks and follow through with deadlines if you specify and detail the important things you need to do. It might also help if you write your goals down on a big attention-grabbing sheet of paper or board.
Do you have your own tips you wish to share? Send them over by writing a comment below.