If you have just started your freelancing career you may feel overhelmed by the sheer volume of work involved. Whether you are an artisan creating and selling hand made jewelry for cash or a writer, there are a few things you can do to increase the amount of time you spend working on your business, and reduce the time spent on distractions and unnecessary tasks.
Dealing with Distractions
A common gripe for freelancers and home based business owners is that sometimes you dear ones dont really understand that you are working. People who would never dream of dropping by somebodys office unannounced in the middle of the day will show up for coffee when you are in the middle of your working day, and some will even joke about your work not being a real job. This is often made even worse by partners who believe that since you are at home you should take care of the house and the family first, and work later. Which can sometimes be ok if you are just working from home as a part time occupation or for some extra income, but not when you are bringing home a decent salary.
The only way to avoid distractions of this sort is to educate your friends and family about the fact that you are working. And you can only accomplish this if you actually take your job seriously. Write a business plan about your ideas to make money, set up space on your home to act as your home business office and draw clear limits about your availability for impromptu visits and social phone calls. Defend your right to make an income working from home and take your business as seriously as anybody working at an office, or youll find you never have time for it.
Use The Right Tools
Any tradesman will tell you about the importance of having the right tools for the job, and even if your business is fully online and you only sell services this still does apply. Having an old computer that takes 10 minutes to start or a failing hard drive that loses data at the worst possible moment means stress, disruptions and reduced productivity. Using inadequate software can increase the time it takes you to do stuff by half, whether is for accounting or web design. Even writers benefit from tools such as a comfortable keyboard to prevent RSI or a speech-to-text dictation program.
Leave Repetitive Tasks To Computers
Lots of time is wasted by business owners trying to do everything by hand when technology would have sufficed. Scheduling tweets manually can take an hour, whereas upload a file with an updated list of Tweeter messages for all your accounts takes 10 minutes. If you make money from EBay youll find that setting up 200 eBay listings manually takes a long time, whereas using the right software tool would free your time to do things computers cannot do so well, such as writing engaging descriptions and editing pictures to look their best.
If you find yourself spending time repeating a routine tasks that anybody with a bit of training could do, such as filling forms or sending welcome emails again and again, look for a software solution that could do it for you and your productivity will increase more than enough to pay for it.