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I’ve been a freelancer for over ten years and love it. I have the freedom to work where I want and when. Freelancing is a gratifying career, but it does come with challenges along the way. Creating a daily routine has helped me to organise myself and my work. 

As a freelancer, there can be days when it is tempting to have a lie-in and break your everyday routine. However, establishing a routine early on is critical for a successful freelancer career. Read this article to discover why a daily routine can make a positive difference.

Pitfalls

An irregular routine will create problems for you that can have devastating effects. Here are the most common ones so you can avoid them at all costs.

Physical Health Implications

If you don’t have a daily routine, you can have noticeable physical health problems. Here are some examples:

Mental Health Concerns

It’s not only your physical body that can take a hit. An irregular routine can also affect you mentally. Here are the main problem areas:

  • Stress levels increase
  • You start suffering from mood swings
  • Your motivation will start to decrease

Professional Consequences

Your body and mind are the most critical areas to protect. However, your working life is where you make your money. Get that wrong, these things can happen:

  • You will start to miss deadlines
  • Your work quality will become inconsistent
  • You will experience a breakdown in communications with your clients

Benefits Of A Daily Routine for Freelancers

Work-Life Balance

As you can see from the above, many compelling reasons exist for creating a routine. The only thing you must do is make one! 🙂 Here are the main benefits you will gain from having a routine and sticking to it like glue.

1. Increased Productivity

It can help you to increase your productivity. A routine helps you map out your day. The routine makes you more focused and promotes efficient work periods. It’s important to note that increased productivity does not equate to doing more work. It’s all about planning and creating the best routine possible.

2. A Daily Routine Gives You a Better Work-Life Balance

As a freelancer, it’s tempting to work a few minutes more or sometimes take on too much work from clients. Sticking to your routine is essential to avoid going down one of these slippery roads. Your routine will show you how much time you have, and you will understand the value of time.

3. Consistency In Your Output

As above, your routine helps you be more consistent with the amount of work you produce. For example, as a writer, you might need more time to write your blog if you are busy writing for clients. Putting time aside each day in your routine can help you be more consistent.

4. Reduced Stress And Burnout

Working too hard or inefficiently over a long period is stressful and can lead to burnout. Your routine can help to keep your stress levels down, reducing the chance of burnout. NB If you start to feel stressed, it’s probably time for a break and to review your schedule.

Tips For Establishing An Effective Daily Routine

Same Wake Up Time

You can read this article for easy tips to create and enjoy a morning routine. You can also follow these six things to help you.

1. Make Sleep A Priority

At night, it’s easy to get sucked into the next episode of a series or decide to watch your favourite film. However, making sleep your priority is crucial. Going to bed at a reasonable time every night, ideally at the same time, will help you. WebMD shares some great physical and mental benefits of sleeping in this article.

2. Have The Same Wake-Up Time

Setting an alarm to wake up at the same time every day is another critical part of a daily routine. Your body will automatically adjust to this time. You will eventually find that you wake up just before your alarm. A set time to wake up also helps you to plan your day the night before.

3. Always Start With A Morning Ritual

A morning ritual is another fantastic way to start the day and put you in the right frame of mind. Here are some ideas of what you can do when you get up:

  • Eating a healthy breakfast can help your mind and body and fuel you throughout the morning till your lunch break. 
  • Doing some exercises when you get up can also get your day off to a great start.
  • Meditating can help focus your mind and prepare you for the day ahead. It will give you more mental clarity to start work calmly.
  • Studying or learning a course for 30 minutes or reading a book can ease your brain into work mode.

4. Prioritise The Most Important Tasks

Every day, you will have a list of tasks to complete. Make time the night before to put everything in order. List the jobs in order of priority so you can get started the next day in a proper system. It will give you the confidence to keep pressing forward as you work through your tasks.

5. Get Rid Of Distractions

Working from home has many benefits and can help with a work-life balance. However, there can be many distractions nearby that you must stay on top of. Here are some of the most common culprits:

  • Keep your mobile phone near you if you need it for work. Otherwise, put it aside so you don’t start checking your messages or the internet.
  • If you have a fluffy friend at home, it can be great for company. However, make sure your pet is in a different location during meetings.
  • Most of us like to look at social media, but there needs to be a limit. Allow yourself to check it for some time and stick to that commitment.

6. Take Lots Of Breaks

It would help if you made breaks part of your routine. Also, it’s important to note I said “breaks” and not “break”. Recent research in Romania found that many microbreaks (less than 10-minute pauses from tasks) can help “in preserving high levels of vigour and alleviating fatigue”.

Overcoming Challenges to Create a Daily Routine

Assessment

Things will go wrong. Here are three things you can do to handle these challenges.

Accept Imperfections in Your Daily Routine

Learn to accept imperfections in your daily routine. Your daily routine will have to be flexible at times. The freelancers’ world can change from one moment to the next. Don’t be afraid of these moments. Embrace them, learn from them and then move on to the next thing in your routine.

Put Accountability Measures In Place

You can also hold yourself accountable to your daily routine. Unless you follow it, you won’t know if it works for you. Be conscious of your daily routine as you work through the day. Try to stick to it as best as you can. You could even have a list or diary where you tick each item off as you complete each part of your routine.

Make An Assessment And Adjust Accordingly

Like everything in life, things can change. Therefore, assess your daily routine regularly. What helps you now might not work six months from now. By carrying out regular assessments, you can adjust your daily routine accordingly. Learn to be flexible, which will help you make your routine more effective.

Daily Routine for Freelancers: Start it Now

This blog post will give you some ideas and the motivation to experiment with your routine. Please give it a go from tomorrow and figure out what does and doesn’t work best for you. You can then create a daily routine for YOU and ensure you prioritise your well-being. Good luck!

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Personal Development For Entrepreneurs and Freelancers