“Time is money,” an adage famously attributed to Benjamin Franklin, rightly captures the picture of the freelancing fiasco. If you have enough time after your office or college, you can earn a handy amount of money from these freelancing platforms. Not only can you make sufficient earnings, but it also gives you opportunities to grow and flourish your own business merely through freelancing.
This can only be done if you are utilizing the time in the right way. Poor time management or lacking the ability to understand the situation can certainly thwart your freelancing journey in many ways. Whether you are a budding freelancer or have spent four, or five years in the Gig Economy, time management remains an appalling issue among the freelancer community.
Here we will talk about a few useful Time Management tactics that can help you to manage the needle of a clock and get the maximum out of your freelancing journey.
Table of Contents
1. Prioritize the Tasks
No two different tasks can carry the same certain level of importance and never trap yourself in two projects on the same day as a deadline because you should not be supposed to put your entire nervous system in a high ended pressure trial like this. Your freelancing career may be lucrative enough, but you must hold your mental well-being in high esteem as well. Try to minimize the pressure of identical tasks and prioritize them.
In this pursuit, the Eisenhower method may be a better option to follow. This time scheduling method is named after US President Dwight D. Eisenhower, by far the busiest person in the world.
“I have two kinds of problems, the urgent and the important. The urgent are not important, and the important are never urgent.”
The tasks that are both, i.e., important and urgent, should be done primarily. Then comes tasks that are important but are not urgent. Similarly, in the third spot, you should prioritize the task with low importance but high urgency. And finally, give rest of time to the tasks that are neither important nor urgent. Twitter, of course!
2. Divide & Rule
Our mind works in a way that segments the memories among different schemas. This neural network exhibits its behavior in an episodic manner. This is the reason why we retrieve some memory in chunks. You should be trying to make your time management strategy compatible with your innate mind-processing strategy.
The Pomodoro Technique can help you cope with the time management dilemma. It is a typical method of time management developed in the late 1980s by the then-entrepreneur Francesco Cirillo. The model uses a timer to break down work into cycles separated by short breaks, traditionally 25 minutes in duration.
Slice it well at the start, and brainstorm each phase afterward. Try to divide the larger task that would probably take more time into various segments and now keenly cater to them simultaneously. By this, you would effortlessly perform subtasks, and it will lead you to the final stage of your project, most importantly, by preserving your energy as well.
3. Budget Your Time Appropriately
You might have more tasks to perform than the total hours in the day. What should be your plan of action to combat all these challenges? Allocating the time wisely!
Make a list and jot down the required time slot for each task. For attaining the maximum result, try to write every micro-level task that would consume your energy. This will help you in two ways, i.e., have a more clear image of your working day, and get the things done in their allocated time slots.
This is certainly a win-win situation when your client is happy to have the completed project on its table before time, and you also got some time to free your back.
4. Avoid Distractions
Distraction is one of the biggest adversaries while working on freelance projects. It kills time, and you, being a freelancer standing on the verge of a project’s deadline, can’t afford this at any cost. It may be tempting to check every notification that a smartphone is throwing. Remember, the more you stay organized, the more time you will save in finishing the task.
Picking the right projects and charging what you deserve is purely a prerogative right you have been given by freelancing platforms. This privilege should not be carried away only due to time constraints. Try to negotiate and carve out a deadline that would be the most optimal one. Your skills and efforts should not be left in the dark due to being late one or two days. Thus, avoid every bit of distraction and change the setting of your workplace area.
Social media websites should be placed in the lowest priority of the above-mentioned Eisenhower matrix and dealt with accordingly.
5. Use Right Technology
If you want to be ahead of the curve, you always need an apt set of tools for it. You also make a look at the extensions of the browsers you are using. There exist quite a few useful apps for freelancers. An app like Be Focused will retain your motivation and keep track of your progress by sending you periodic notifications related to your tasks. The tracking feature can be customized as per the requirements of your working mode. You can use an online time tracking tool like Due Time Tracker to keep an eye on the needle. It will assist you in managing the time and in the billing process too.
There are plenty of Chrome extensions as well, like OneTab and Pushbullet, that can save you from wasting time in dealing with micro-operations.
In the digital era, amidst the influx of data and utility apps, time management has become a part of the job rather than merely a soft skill. It adds value to the worth of employees and their skillset. Freelancers surely have a seemingly unbounded environment and have almost no supervision over them. Meanwhile, the lurking deadlines of the projects and the fear of bad reviews keep haunting them.
By following and adopting the above-stated techniques– be it an aspiring self-employed worker or any proven freelancer– they both would be able to plan their day in a more structured way. Using the right tool and embracing classical time-saving techniques will make a huge difference and raise the degree of productivity as well.