The freedom of working on your own can be exhilarating. And overwhelming.
Many of us escaped corporate slavery because we were tired of punching a clock. The day we hit the door we left the trappings of that world and all the drudgery that came along with it, including that dreaded time clock.
I even worked at a job where we used a digital fingerprinting system to clock in and out so no one could impersonate us and manipulate our hours. Talk about slavery!
But maybe it’s time to give that time clock a second look.
💔 Falling out of love with your clients? Trade some of your worst clients for the best companies in the world with SolidGigs, our premium weekly freelance job list & course library. Love your business again. Learn more »
Even if you’re using a value-based pricing system, tracking your time has its advantages.
Here are just a couple to consider:
Without tracking, you don’t know where the hours are going
Do you ever feel like you spend more time working on your business than in your business?
In the beginning you’ll be busy setting up business systems and marketing. But once things get rolling, you should be prioritizing your workload and making money. Otherwise your business won’t survive.
Use a time tracking app like toggl or create a recipe in IFTTT that records your time on a Google Sheet. Be sure to record every activity and label it appropriately, including email management, accounting and marketing.
Enter your email. Grow your business.
Submit your email below and join 45,000+ creatives who get our most helpful content via email every week. 100% free. Unsubscribe anytime. Privacy protected.
After a couple of weeks you will know what you’re really doing and what activities take up the most of your time.
Use this information to say goodbye to bad habits (spending too much time on social media) or outsource tasks that drag you down.
Without tracking, you don’t know how long things take
One day someone asked me how long it takes me to plan a month’s worth of marketing content and I stood there looking like an idiot.
I really didn’t know.
It’s easy to wreck a schedule this way. Take on too much, and you really start to go crazy. Take on too little, and you starve. The stress is enough to burn you out quickly.
Taking the Next Steps
After 2-4 weeks of tracking every single activity you do during your day, choose some of the following options:
- use a website blocker to keep you away from time-wasting websites
- outsource simple tasks so you can stay focused on making money
- choose a versatile project or business management tool and get organized
- set working hours for yourself and stick to them
Wrapping Things Up
Don’t hide behind the left-brain/right-brain argument and leave things to chance.
Successful freelancers have good systems in place (or they hire someone to create them).
Creativity and organization can reside in the same person. Why not you?
Do you have a favorite time tracking tool or system? We’d love to hear about it in the comments!
Keep the conversation going...
Over 5,000 of us are having daily conversations over in our free Facebook group and we'd love to see you there. Join us!