I’ve been where you are, sleeping too much and trying to work from the sofa in my pyjamas, and not getting much done.
Well, these tips might seem simple and basic, but trust me, they work. Of course, you might need to adapt them a bit. But better if you don’t!
- If you tend to oversleep, don’t try to get up at 8 in the morning. Try 9 or 10, and get OUT of the bed, and go to the bathroom without hesitation, no thinking.
- Get dressed immediately. Don’t linger around the house in your pyjamas. You have to work, so dress comfortably but with the same clothes you would wear out of the house.
- Make your bed. Yes, make it. You have done your first productive thing of the day, plus it makes your room look better, so you’ll feel better as well.
- Have breakfast. A cup of coffee, a glass of water, yoghurt, some fruit. Whatever you prefer, but eat or drink something.
- Now, turn on your computer or check your emails on your phone, or your calendar for appointments, whatever you need to do first to get started.
- Make a list of things you must do, and a list of things you could do that day. Of course, you will start with the must, but along the way you might realise not everything you though was necessary is, so be flexible, but don’t cheat. If you move a must to the could list, then check the coulds and see if you can get one or two done today.
- If you are distracted at home, go outside. Chose a cafe or a coworking space near your home (it has to be within walking distance, or bike), and go, at least two or three hours a day.
- Do some exercise. It doesn’t have to be something too athletic (I’m quite lazy myself). Walk to the cafe, bike there, go up some stairs, something. You spend lots of time in front of the computer, some exercise will do you good. Walk instead of taking the subway or a bus. If you are freelancing, you have the time. It clears your mind. If you are sporty, great, you already know what I am talking about.
- If you can do it, do it. Don’t overthink. If you think: “I should call so and so”, do it right then. And if you can’t do it (maybe it’s too early, or too late), I’m sure there’s something else you can do instead. Do your laundry, clean the dishes, send an email, change a light bulb, anything. “Do. Or do not. There is no try”, Yoda would say. I say, ‘Do. Or do’. No excuses: imagine yourself working in an office from 9 to 5 with a nasty boss and boring colleagues every day of your life. Good.
- Find other freelancers like you. Ask them what their routines are like, steal the tricks that you think might help you.
And if you are not getting a task done, maybe you should hire me to do it instead. Just Ask Vic!