Staying Motivated Without a Boss (part 1)
Many freelancers find discipline and motivation a problem. You start out with the best of intentions, but soon find yourself waking up at midday and lounging in front of the tv. These are the first in a series of tips and tricks you can employ to stay motivated when you don’t have a boss on your back.
Give your client a timeline even if they don’t ask for it
A good way to make sure you don’t waste your days is to give yourself a tight schedule and put it in writing for your client. Commit to dates for small milestones throughout the project, so hopefully you won’t find yourself working through the night to meet your deadline.
Begin the day the right way
Many people look forward to sleeping in when they start working for themselves. Unfortunately I’ve found sleeping in and a focussed work day do not mix. Wake up with your alarm clock and get to work immediately. It’s so much harder to begin work if you’ve started the day by lazing around – in fact I find if I start the day by sleeping in or relaxing, it’s next to impossible for me to get a good work day in. By waking up early and spending your morning at work, even if you lose your focus later in the day you’ve already gotten some good work done.
Make a To Do list every morning
A fantastic habit to get into is to start every day by writing a To Do list. Write down everything from your previous days To Do list, then everything new that may have arrived in the last 24 hours. Next, take a highlighter and mark the things that you want to complete that day and number them in the order that you’re going to complete them. Then make sure you follow your list! This will also stop you from picking the ‘fun’ jobs and avoiding the challenging ones, something most freelancers are guilty of! If you scorn paper and pen, there are some great online tools you can use, such as Ta-Da Lists.
So there are the first few tips to help you stay motivated. If there’s anything that works for you, please share it in the comments!