In defining freelancers, one of the first images that comes to mind is someone pursuing a career in their most casual outfits, namely their pajamas. This indeed would be a dream come true. Oh, but alas that describes this author! So, lest we deliberate on the fashion for freelancers and omit the subject of the agenda, let’s jump right in with all fours and discover those amazing five habits.
Yes, believe it or not even free spirits, freelancers, have goals. One of course is to keep eating; the other is to be able to sleep indoors; another might be to have a voice-activated form of communication; and for some, to have transportation. In this author’s case it is just reassuring to know her brain is functioning at a reasonable level, and that she actually has work when all about her were demanding she “get out and get a job!”
Work-related goals, however, respond to things like setting an alarm clock, enjoying a healthy breakfast, using the first hour to get fully awake by doing a few truly necessary household chores, then “getting at it.” Before investing in spending the time you are most creative doing chores around the house, consider either mixing up the duties with the freelancing, or devote all of your energy to work and plan to do chores in small chunks. Guess this translates into discipline. When the gray matter becomes somewhat useless, it’s time for a much needed break of either fruit or cheese and water, or just water. And on it goes till complete, then a very light lunch so as not to hamper those wheels of progress. Pursuant to a goal of a shower in time for an evening break, only water to drink during mad speed writing. If work must go on and on, a low sodium caffeine drink is advisable. Collapsing over the writing device indicates sleep is coming whether or not it’s best at this point. Remember to click the “save” button regularly; there is just no justice in the world for a sleepy freelancer and an unsaved document!
These appear to be a branch of discipline. However, the force that keeps the discipline going is one of my husband’s favorite words, mainly because he is a huge John Wayne fan, and that is grit. It’s the drive behind the wheel. The goals are in place, the discipline guides the day, so now the perseverance must prevail.
● Working with Excellence
Having established the first three habits, working to produce a product worthy of publication and enjoyable to audiences, is the fourth habit to cultivate. If no quality work issues forth, then why even set the alarm? Remember the goals? How can a person justify having work to do, if there is no integrity and work ethic involved? Fortunately, a few esteemed members of my family exuded a superior work ethic.
● Handy Note-taking Tools
Making notes on anything of non-value is essential especially in the freelance writing business. Thoughts come and go, but uniquely amazing ones just go! It’s best to keep bits of paper somewhere close by and a usable writing tool of some caliber. A writer friend kept a small tape recorder in her purse for just such moments. Guess one of the phones of recent technology would be able to provide such a service now days.
Of course this is not an exhaustive list of desirable traits, just a few to get you started. But knowing them and actually putting them into practice – making them genuine habits – must come from a personal decision. In the end, strive for whichever plan produces a product worthy of someone’s valuable time and attention, so the image of a freelancer will be a wee bit classier.