|Form provided by artofactualization.com|
This last week I was away from my day job. Furlough days as they are called. It was nice to get away from the classroom and write more. I used the time wisely and had a little epiphany that led to this post.
My job as a teacher is regimented with daily bells, progress reports, and grading terms. I lie out my curriculum at the beginning of the year and systematically reach certain checkpoints. This is not the case with my freelance writing job, and this is a detriment to my success. The freedom feels great, but I soon find myself not getting much done day to day. In order to have a steady income I must keep track of my work schedule. I have never been one to plan. I prefer to receive life as it happens, but as I delve into this freelance writing career I’m finding planning a necessity. The pay reduction hurts, but something good did come from my forced vacation. It allowed me to focus on my writing business and implement the use of a day planner.
Sometime ago I came across a very interesting form on artofactualization.com. It seems the rest of their site is not operational, but their day planner form is put together well. The best part of the form is the “I promise that I will get this done today” section. It was very powerful to write a task in that section. I’m happy to say that everyday last week I met my promise. I also appreciate the reminders that are built into the form. It is easy to get bogged down with tasks and forget to take care of yourself. My exercise routine actually became a routine, and I took a moment to appreciate my time with my family and friends. I believe when freelance writing becomes a full-time gig using this daily planner will be essential.
Another aspect that appeals to me is the structure of business practice built into the form. Keeping track of income and expenses on a daily basis makes good business sense. Unconsciously I treat my writing business as a hobby. I believe that stems from having a steady paycheck from teaching, and allowing myself to put tasks off because it doesn’t effect putting food on the table. My mentors have stressed to me that I must treat writing as a business. Successful business people have set goals, with daily routines and systems in place. As I learn and grow I’m implementing more of these best practices. Using a day planner will lead to better productivity and a bigger bottom-line.
How do you schedule your freelance workday? What systems do you have in place that is most helpful? Leave a comment and share.