A Day in the Life of a Freelancer

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Woman typing on laptop with raisin toast and small glass of juice next to her
Courtesy of Zaira Jonson / Reshot

Freelance: as the name suggests, our minds automatically frame a picture of freedom and having a grand time while making money. We visualize a life away from commitment, tedious jobs, workload, and the regular to-and-fro cycle of office and home. However, the reality is that it’s not as easy and carefree as it looks. The day in the life of a freelancer is like a roller coaster running from one end to the other, with frequent sudden stops, while the course of this coaster changes every single day. Hence, it becomes difficult for a freelancer to plan the entire week. It starts with a new client every week, with a new order and a fresh supply of money. While this life can sound exciting and fun, it is equally important to stay focused and conscious about each task you take while maintaining your freelancer image and keep yourself satisfied.

Let’s run through the key details of a freelancer’s life and derive a few tips from it:

Ever-Running Schedules

A freelancer’s life means perpetually filled-in schedules, which keep ranging from flexible to stringent tasks, depending upon the projects in the freelancer’s queue. Any day of the week, you, as a freelancer, cannot escape from schedules; therefore, it is crucial to have an updated checklist of the tasks coming up, in-process, and completed. In the process, you have to make time for your personal (family time and household chores) and professional (regular job, if freelancing is still your side gig) responsibilities. It would be best if you also accounted for vacation periods and time off for personal errands to make sure you can allocate enough time for all of your projects and your personal life.

Freelancer Journal

Whether you are new to the freelancing world or an experienced freelancer, develop the habit of maintaining a freelancing journal (physical or online). In your journal, you can input the details of your ideas behind becoming a freelancer, your initial struggle, the first project(s)/task(s), names of clients, a short description of each project, plus your personal as well as client’s feedback on each project. Though this may seem like an extra-job initially, this journal carries the whole story of your freelancing adventure and will be beneficial as you progress in your journey.

Relationships and Reputation

Once you have successfully cleared the first stage of setting up a freelancer business for yourself, start with the role of building your presence, locally and online, depending on the nature of your business. Building professional connections is vital in every field of business. Making pleasant conversations with your clients and receiving feedback well, and acting on their suggestions for improvement can create the necessary bond and trust. Scroll through your significant clients and make an attempt to connect to them: reach out to them regularly (but not too frequently) and periodically suggest new services that are relevant to them. Make sure you don’t spam them with blatant promotional messages; instead, be genuine and send useful messages that you believe may help your clients. Beneficial communications can help you build your reputation and relation with your clients, thereby establishing and growing your business.

Be the Good Boss

Since you are your own boss, don’t take yourself or your job for granted. Taking ownership of your freelancing success is crucial to ensure an ongoing inflow of projects and payments. Hold yourself accountable for your day-to-day achievements and shortcomings and work to improve yourself and your business wherever possible. Be focused, committed, and consistent for ongoing results.

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