Let’s step away from the technical part of having a successful online or work-at-home business. How about the basics of living as a freelancer?
Freelancing can be harder than we think. Working at home or making money online, being your own boss and regulating your own work hours can make you or break you! Who would think that the best part of freelancing can be the path to your demise?
There are a few things you should keep in mind when maintaining your own business at home. These tips are vital if you want to succeed both in life and in your business. After all, we’re in freelancing to live a better life, right? Take heed, freelancers everywhere!
– Especially when starting up and getting our businesses off the ground, we tend to get carried away and work 18 hours a day, or more! (It’s funny; weren’t we trying to get away from overtime at the office?) Start at an easy pace and scale up. If you start with a standard 8 hour work day, you’ll see how much time you need for every task and you can bump up from there.
– Lots of times, we work at home all day. At the beginning, (much like myself!) we thought that we could balance chores at home and be able to keep our workplaces and homes neat, tidy and clean. However, paradoxically, we tend to make excuses for ourselves, saying that we can do them later. Procrastination runs free! Never leave out your part of the chores. Take some time in the morning or in the middle of the day to tend to your things. Hey, you could even do 15-20 minutes of chores every couple of hours. That will help you get things done, and you won’t be sitting down all day! It can even help you with your health!
– Make sure in your 26-hour work day to take some “you” and “family” time. This quality time is needed for you to relax and spend time with yourself and your family. In no case should your family feel that you’re not giving enough time to them – this also goes for normal office jobs, as well! Also, take time out for you to relax and get away from your desk a while. You can go out for a walk or run, or even plop on the couch for a movie or such. The main point is to back away from the computer!
– Don’t overwork yourself. Like we said, it’s a double-edged knife, working at home and being your own boss. You can’t make yourself work so many hours a day – just because it’s “easier”, it doesn’t mean you have to wear yourself out. The point of being a freelancer is to feel better about yourself and your job, and make a living on your own terms. If you lose more than half your life working, it kind of cancels itself out, right?
– Make up a standard schedule. This is very good for productivity. When we’re at home, it’s so easy for us to decide to have a couch day or stay in bed until 12pm every day. This will not work or help you at all! Set aside the times you’ll be working. Make it a standard 8-hour day (or however many hours you’re set on working every day) and keep to those hours. Many morning people have found that their best productive times are 9 am-5pm or 10am-6pm, and some night owls like to work from 11pm-5am. Whatever works for everyone, that’s their best time!
Have you figured out your own tips and tricks on living as a successful freelancer and being your own boss? Feel free to share with us!