Sunday 27 January 2019

(AD) Staying organised as a freelancer

Just before Christmas I left my office job, and after the festive season had ended I started my freelance journey. I used to do a bit of freelancing when I was still in uni, but this time around I've got no loan to fall back on so it's all down to me. I do content writing, for the most part, and also class any sponsored work I get for my blog/social media as part of my freelancing. Working from home is so much nicer than commuting to an office and having to be surrounded by people's germs and pointless gossip and microcosm politics, but it can be easy to just get a bit lazy. So here's my tips for staying organised as a freelancer!

To-do lists 

Lists are the heroes of the freelancing world, and so important for staying on top of things. I have a list pad (from Flying Tiger) that I use to jot down what I want to get done that day, and an app called 'Lists to do' on my phone that has everything specific on it, from future blog posts to brands I want to pitch to. The app is easy to use and quite aesthetically pleasing. Having everything laid out in lit form, whether that's on paper or via technology, makes things less overwhelming and ticking things off is just SO satisfying.

Your work area

I'm lucky enough to have a home office, with a desk and a comfy chair, and I find that working in there makes me so much more productive. As I currently write this, I'm feeling really poorly so I'm on the sofa with a blanket and the telly on - and I know I'm not getting as much done as I usually would. I find sitting at my desk with a podcast on makes it so much easier to concentrate and get shit done; you don't necessarily need a desk, but having somewhere that's dedicated to your work is definitely helpful.

Make notes

I find making notes really helpful, especially because I've got a terrible memory - whether it's adding stuff to my to-do list, or writing down what I've achieved in a day so I don't end up repeating myself. For example, I've recently been pitching to lots of hotels so I tend to make a list of the ones I've already emailed so I don't accidentally email them twice! I also have a spreadsheet where I write down each individual job, it's deadline, who it's for and what the payment was - that way when it comes to doing my tax return I won't be flicking back through emails trying to find out how much that sponsored post was for.

Keep paper copies

Making sure all of your bank statements, your p60/p45s, receipts, invoices etc are in one place is also really handy when it comes to HMRC. Having your records in order is helpful anyway, though, in case you need to look back or clarify something. They don't have to be stashed away in something boring, though - you could get a nice patterned box or look at creative presentation folders or something similar!

Some other tips

Generally, find what works for you and stick to it - don't take on more jobs than you know you can handle, learn how to separate me-time from work time, get out of the house when you can and set some goals.

Leave your freelancing tips in the comments below, too!

Post written in collaboration with Showcase Creative.

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