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Work At Home: A Quick Guide To Freelance Writing

So you are choosing to write from your house, and finding that things aren’t going as well as you had planned. The advice which will make the most difference here is to treat it as work.

Be self-monitoring

You need to be ruthless with yourself, as you are likely not to have anyone else cajoling or cracking the whip. Set aside designated times that you will be at your laptop, working. Try to take breaks at particular times, but not too frequently. Keep to a schedule.

Get to know yourself

If you are an early bird, this is when you need to put time aside to write. It’s important to go with your own creative impulses and not against them. Your time is your most precious commodity, and there’s nothing worse than sitting in front of an open laptop with nothing written for hours on end. If you know it takes you an hour to get moving in the morning, schedule your business time to start after getting other jobs done first.

Jealously guard your working hours

It’s so easy when working from home for others to see your time as casual. A friend might drop by for a coffee. You partner might text and ask you to pick something up from the store. It’s very important that you set clear boundaries about your business time from the start, and keep to them. Make it clear to others that you are unavailable at certain times because you are working, even if your workspace is in your house.

Have a designated work space

If you don’t have an area of your house set aside for this, it’s easier to fall into the trap of drifting through your day as though it’s a day off. It’s not; it’s a work day! When you have a designated space to turn up at when the clock says 9am, you are more likely to approach your business with a professional attitude.

Have a visual diary

Often those who conduct their business from their personal study are doing so because they are juggling other commitments as well; perhaps children or care of a relative. There are many things to do in a week when you have more than one “job”, and what I have found invaluable is to have the entire week planned out in front of me. I use a month-to-view diary, and a wall planner will be just as useful. I use colors to indicate jobs, activities and commitments which are part of my daily life, and block the writing in between these in another color.

Set goals

Once you know how much time will be put aside for the week, you will be able to set appropriate and manageable goals for yourself. Write these down and check them at the end of the week. Based on these, you can continue to set the next week’s goals. In order for goalsetting to be useful, it needs to be meaningful, manageable and measurable.

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