It's been one year since I was flung headlong into the world of tentative employment! No more 9-5 slog at a job I could barely stand getting up for in the morning. No more endless routine. No more walking home past the cemetery each evening and wondering if this was all there is to life (morbid, I know). A whole year! Where do I begin? Working for myself has been a mixed bag, but I definitely wouldn't trade it for the 9-5 life anytime soon. Here's some things that I have learned along the way:
One of the toughest things for me as a freelancer is the amount of time I spend managing client feedback. Often there is more than one person that I am speaking to, they have meetings with each other, separately with me, and we often spend a lot of time re-hashing the same feedback and discussions multiple times. If I was the boss of the world, things would be more streamlined, but as it turns out, I'm not, and client feedback and project management can be time consuming and messy.
Back when I worked full time I used to be pretty organised when it came to calendar planning and my schedule, but now that I'm freelancing, I have to be on top of it all the time. Keeping track of various clients, appointments and deadlines as well as a social life (hopefully!) can become extremely complicated. Even nail painting time (procrastination) is booked in (jokes!)
There are lots of productivity assistants out there and I've tried many of them. The one thing I can rely on myself to check regularly and keep up to date with is my google calendar. It's not perfect, but I have a few tips that make it work just that little bit better for what I need.
Since I started working from home, I'm more accountable for my own time. There isn't someone standing over my shoulder checking how many hours I work (good), but there also isn't someone there to leave the office and remind me that my day is done (bad). There is also the distraction of just about anything... oh, look, is that a dirty sock? I might do some washing... or, hm... a coffee would be nice right now. So. Easily. Distracted. It's one extreme or the other with me!
I needed to figure out a system fairly quickly, but I don't think I've perfected it just yet. I'd love to know how my fellow designers, working from home folk, or organisational freaks in general get sh*t done.
What gets in the way of your super organised day?
Welcome to my new series "Work Your Way". It's all about inspiring each other and sharing knowledge to help us all work better and smarter. Since I started working from home, I've been thinking of ways to optimize my workspace. It's been a little haphazard as I've been based all over the place, from various offices to my own desk. I'm now on a 2 month contract working from home, so it's about time I organised my workspace properly! I've been peeping at some beautiful creative spaces online and dreaming about what I can concoct at home.
The most important things about you home workspace are: