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How to avoid procrastination and boost productivity as a freelancer
As a Freelancer, do you find it challenging to stay focused, keep track of your tasks, and complete them on time? Do you struggle with procrastination? If so, you’re probably a victim of the modern freelance lifestyle.
Procrastination is a common issue for freelancers because we can choose how we spend our free time. But we can still work on improving our productivity as a freelancer. Even though many tips can help you overcome procrastination and improve your productivity as a freelancer, here are 4 that I love the most:
-Plan your work day and week
As a freelancer, it is incredibly easy to get stressed and uninterested due to the volume of work sometimes. But you could make it easy for yourself to overcome procrastination by planning your day or week.
How do you do this? I always ensure I plan myself a week ahead. For example, I have written down my weekly tasks and essential goals. I already created most of my tweets and scheduled them using the tweet deck and canva content planner for the week.
Also, I have scheduled my medium content for the week and written what I want to post on LinkedIn. Furthermore, my tasks at DxTalks have already been listed, so it would be easy for me to follow up from tomorrow.
Note that these tasks are written based on their importance so that I will not procrastinate and reduce my productivity. You can do this too.
Make a list of your tasks for the day or week and mark the important things to be done first. Doing this will make it easy to overcome procrastination and boost your productivity.
-Set a daily limit and reward yourself for getting things done
I don’t think you need to work for the most part of 24 hours before you can say you are productive. Productivity is not about the number of hours you spend working; it is the number of quality things you can do.
Studies have shown that only deep work and focus can produce optimized results. For example, if you have two crucial things to do first, you can use the Pomodoro Technique to set time limits to handle them and then move to lesser tasks for the rest of the day.
The Pomodoro technique helps to break down challenging tasks into smaller ones, helps reduce burnout, and enables one to remember unfinished tasks easily.
Also, don’t forget to reward yourself for every work done. It will accelerate work optimism and improve productivity.
-Take care of the most challenging task first.
Most people called this the ‘Eat the Frog’ method of getting things done. It simply means taking care of the complex tasks first when you have supercharged concentration and energy levels at the beginning of the day. It is recommended to start small, then scale it to avoid burnout and stress creeping in at the beginning of your day.
Doing this well will have a far-reaching impact on your other lesser tasks throughout the day. As a content writer, since research takes a chunk of my work time, I ensure I carry out the research early and draft a content timeline I can quickly build later. Find the Frog in your work schedule and eat it!
-Cut down on your social media distraction.
What’s freelancing without little distractions from your devices? Most productivity hacks I have read on Freelancing advise taking your phones, tabs, and other smart devices far from your work desk. And this might actually be something you want to consider.
For me, I have had my procrastinating time due to notifications from Twitter and WhatsApp. What did I do? I tried to cut it down by removing notification sounds and putting off the internet connection for my social media apps. Did it work? Yes, but not the way I wanted. So I have now made social media a reward for every task I do.
If I am working slowly, I can reward myself with 20 minutes on Twitter if I write a certain number of words, which has helped me greatly.
Instead of spending my productive work time on social media, I cut it down to when I have achieved a specific work-related feat. You should try it too!
-Don’t make everything about work, be sociable!
If you work from home alone, it is easy to forget yourself at work for a long time which may eventually lead to burnout. To avoid this and procrastination, it is crucial to have a life away from work. When you don’t have much on your desk, reach out to your friends and family and catch up nicely.
Also, working overtime as a freelancer may bring out the introvert in you but do not allow it to affect your social life.
If you can’t connect physically, reach out to people online. An excellent way to do this is to join a community of like minds like my own.
Communities make your life easier by being there for you and providing answers to your challenges when you are stuck. It is also a great way to overcome stress and procrastination, as those who have been in your shoes can advise you rightly.
Freelancers cannot run away from procrastination as they usually work in tandem. However, they can take measures to reduce and overcome them to boost their productivity. So whenever you find yourself in the procrastination ship, these tips will help a lot in how you can overcome it and improve your work.
PS: I am organizing a class on learning the secrets of Upwork Upwork won’t tell you. I have attached the flyer for more information, or you can reach out to me on Twitter or email [email protected] to know more about it.