Over the past couple of years I have learned so much. Period. One of those categories of learning is how to create working habits that inspire my creative and productive juices. Today I will share those tricks with YOU! 😉
- Set office hours. This is as much for you as it is for your clients. This is about setting boundaries for you and your clients. This is for you because workaholics need the accountability and permission to stop working and those with a lazy tendency need the push to start working and to keep at it. My boundaries consist of regular work hours M-F 9am – 5pm (this is mainly for phone, email, and meeting purposes), I take a Sabbath on Sundays, and I have date night with the hubs on Monday nights. As far as I’m concerned any other evenings and Saturdays are fair game for photo shoots. It’s ok, in fact it’s important to give yourself a break to have dinner with your family, or take a Sunday Sabbath, or have a date night with your spouse. I have found that my clients like to know I have a life outside of my work and that they can count on me within my office hours because I’ve set those boundaries.
- Commit to realistic goals. Give yourself a daily TO DO list that will fill your work day but will also be completed by the end of it. For some of us this means giving ourselves more to do – this way you won’t find yourself surfing the web aimlessly, sitting on Facebook, or going back for more snacks repeatedly. For others of us, like myself, this means giving ourselves less – this way you won’t be working into the wee hours of the night or kicking yourself at the end of the day for not finishing everything you set out to do. At the end of your day you will feel accomplished.
- Take breaks. During your work day it is best to take anywhere between 2 – 5 breaks. All of these breaks should involve getting up and walking around a little bit. Personally, I have found I maximize my productivity if I take my first break for about an hour around 1pm to eat, read, walk the dogs, or do something else fun and then to take a succession of smallish breaks ever couple of hours after that until I’m finished for the day. Taking breaks gives your mind a moment to wander freely and potentially problem solve in the process, besides a good leg stretch is a wonderful idea and will ease your increasing restlessness.
- Accomplish something small. Ending the day with a sense of accomplishment is ridiculously important. If all else fails during my work day I have found that by walking the dogs, doing the dishes, or cleaning helps me to at least feel productive.
- Take time just to be. By taking time to simply sit in the quiet and let your mind wander you will allow your mind to free itself from the web of responsibility and stumble into strokes of brilliance. Haven’t you ever noticed that the best ideas come to you when you are in the shower or driving?
That’s all for now! Have a blessed Friday and weekend! Catch you on Monday 🙂
Great tips, Kaia!
LOVE IT! Such great advice, I totally know where you’re coming from. I’m not self-employed but I work at home and the dilemmas are often the same.
Oh totally! I suppose I could/should have named it accordingly, although I can’t think how I would rename it to fit that 😉