Time Management for Self-Employees

Whether you are working remotely or are self-employed, one of the hardest parts about working out of the office is managing your time. There is new work to find, current clients to talk to, finances to manage and of course, the work itself. Organizing all of that can be daunting, but there’s help. People have been freelancing for a long time and we can benefit from their wisdom.

Figure Out Your Essentials

The first step when organizing anything is to identify what needs to be organized. Write down all of the things that you need to do to keep your work going and then account for time. Figure out how long and how often you need to perform your tasks and pick a time frame, say a month, to start planning in. If you have trouble figuring out how long something might take you, try practicing it. Start at a comfortable pace and record each attempt. Use that as a guide for your estimate.

Organize your Work by Time Frame

The frequency with which you do something can be an organizational tool in and of itself. You may budget monthly, seek clients weekly and communicate with them daily. Take stock of what you need to do and how often you need to do those things and build your schedule to those ratios. Start at the month level and work downward towards your day-to-day and hour-by-hour planning. Once you establish a pace, don’t be discouraged when you hit road bumps, scheduling is a balancing act that requires constant tweaking. Make sure you account for the unexpected, whether they are your much needed breaks or client emergencies. Start by keeping track of what happens over the course of a few work weeks and use that data to shape your schedule to meet your needs.

Plan for the Future

Perhaps the greatest benefit to planning ahead is that it lets you not worry as much about now. It takes a lot of the pressure off of you and makes it easier to do the work. When you don’t have as much to worry about now, you can think about the future. Use your schedule as the groundwork for the growth of your company, skillset or personal brand. Planning makes growth feel almost automatic. Take your career a step further by crafting a lesson plan for future learning. Use your schedule to guide you into a more productive and skillful future.

 

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Meredith Weisser

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