Freelancers need to manage their time well in order to meet deadlines and satisfy clients. These are some great tips!
I’m a freelancer and can work anywhere in the world, but I spend 90% of my time at home. This is because I have a lot of experience. Since I started, it has been one year. It has been a great experience and I’ve learned how to deal with the many challenges along the way.
These tips on time management for freelancers will be of great help to you, regardless of whether you are a contractor or not.
Before we get to the tips about managing time while working remotely, let’s first discuss its importance of it.
Why is time management important for freelancers?
Poor time management
It can be detrimental to your professional and personal life if you are not able to manage your time well.
Increased stress levels
These situations can lead to increased stress and negative feelings, whether it’s finishing a project in a hurry or submitting a project late.
Missing deadlines can be more common if you don’t manage your time well. It can also affect the quality and productivity of your work. If you rush to complete something, there is a high chance that the quality of your work will be compromised. All of these things can lead to a poor impression at work.
Poor work-life balance
Poor time management can lead to poor work-life balance. This can lead to frustrations and dissatisfaction.
A decline in productivity is slowly caused by poor time management. Your efficiency will also drop as a result of the increasing decline in productivity.
10 time management tips for freelancers
Here are 10 time management tips that freelancers and professionals can use to avoid the potential consequences of poor time management.
Plan your day ahead
It’s easy to wake up at random times every day, take breaks at random times, and log off from work at random. This can lead to a chaotic routine that results in time wastage.
It’s a great way to learn!
Planning your day ahead is essential to be efficient with time and increase productivity.
I plan my day in advance. I am old-school. I keep a notebook with the plan. This can be done on your own or you can use Trello to create your to-do lists.
Planning is easy, but sticking with it is hard! The first step is to plan your day ahead. The second is to stick with it.
Which task would you first complete if I asked you?
- You must pay attention to the one that is urgent or
- The one that doesn’t need your immediate attention?
You would choose the first option without a doubt.
Prioritization is a key component of my life. It has been a great help to me.
To prioritize your day’s tasks, take a few minutes before you start your work. It will surprise you to discover how much a few minutes can make a big difference in the efficiency of your work.
There’s another reason to prioritize: completing the urgent task will give you relief and increase your confidence, which will serve as motivation.
Create a dedicated workspace
You don’t need a workspace if you work remotely and can use your bed or couch to work.
It’s easy: set the mood.
It doesn’t matter if you have anything extravagant – the idea of having a space solely for work purposes is fine.
A dedicated space will allow you to be more productive and will help you stay focused.
Share your availability with your family
Your family members should know when you are available. They might be misled by the fact that you work remotely and are not available at all times.
Explain everything to them. Explain to them that even though you work remotely, you won’t be available 24/7 unless you have an urgent or critical matter.
My family didn’t know anything about freelance work or working from home. They didn’t know what I was doing. So I sat down with them and explained everything to them.
Don’t check your phone so often!
It’s not an easy task, but according to Statista in June 2020, smartphones were the most distracting device while working at home during the coronavirus epidemic.
It is tempting to glance at our smartphones every now and again. This might not seem like a major issue to you. It might not seem like a major issue until you consider the cumulative duration.
Seeing that your phone is being used during work hours, for example, for 5-10 minutes, will help you to see how much time you have actually wasted.
Don’t take mindless breaks
It is a bad idea to take mindless breaks!
You are unknowingly increasing your work hours by taking careless breaks during work hours.
Extending your work hours beyond your normal work hours is a sign of poor time management.
If you are taking mindless breaks, it is best to plan your breaks for the day.
I would not lie if I said that I used to take mindless breaks. It was a major reason for my poor work-life balance. Although it was difficult for me to keep to my plan, I began to plan my breaks.
…but take mini breaks
It is important to take breaks, even if you avoid taking unnecessary breaks.
These small breaks can help you be more productive and efficient. These small breaks will help you to recharge, improve your focus, and ultimately, boost your efficiency.
These breaks are what I love, they keep me awake at night. What I usually do: I go on my balcony and listen to my favorite songs.
Only focus on your official work during work hours
Poor time management will eventually result from mixing your personal work with your official work during working hours.
Don’t do any work outside of your official duties during work hours. Be strict.
This is the mistake I made, I messed it up! I made a mistake between them which eventually led to a poor work-life balance. Now, I’m very strict about it.
Assign yourself deadlines
You heard it correctly. You can set deadlines yourself. This has worked for me like a charm.
You can only do this:
Each task should have a deadline. Start without worrying about the future. This is about finishing the work by the deadline. Don’t worry about whether you can do it on time. Start.
But, be realistic about your deadlines. Be flexible. Keep in mind that you are trying something completely new.
Remember to take the deadline seriously and not go easy on it.
Are you more productive when you are focused or do great ideas just come to you at certain times of the day?
Be an observer and learn.
You can then plan your day with this information in mind so you can make the most of your time.
Be realistic and have realistic expectations of yourself. These tips don’t make you a better person.
Do your best to adhere to them, acknowledge any progress you make, and, most importantly, be consistent.
Pooja Chandak is an avid reader and an experienced content writer. Apart from blogs, she writes quotes and poems. She started writing when she was in school. Pooja currently works as a Content Development Executive for a Mumbai-based company.