How to manage your time as freelancer

When it comes to freelancing, there are some great perks such as being your own boss and having flexibility. However, that does mean that you will be a one –woman/man band, and you will be most likely be managing all aspects of your business, from doing the actual client work to issuing invoices to your clients. Therefore, it can be a struggle to manage your time, without sacrificing your work-life balance.

manage your time as a freelancer

Being a freelancer will differ from running a business with a team. So, in this article, we will give you tips on how to maximise and manage your time as a freelancer in order to work effectively.


It is important to take time out of your morning to plan your day. This will get you mentally prepared and focused for your day. It will also allow you to stay focused throughout to reach your aim or goal for the day. Also, it will ensure that you do not miss any important meetings or appointments.  


There are four categories of prioritisation, and they are:

1. Important and urgent - these tasks will require your attention immediately, therefore, take time to plan these into your day.

2. Important but not urgent – with these tasks you really need to use your prioritisation skills and plan them in when you have the time or when they start to become more urgent.

3. Urgent but not important – if you are able to delegate these tasks then that is great. However, working as a freelancer you won’t likely have that option. Therefore, place this category after important and urgent in your list of priorities.

4. Not urgent and not important – if these tasks are just giving the illusion of keeping you busy, then they are not adding any value to your work. Do these when you have spare time.  

Use lists

If lists work for you then use them as they are a great way of helping you prioritise. Also make sure to tick off the tasks as you go, giving you a sense of achievement. Some days will be slower than others, but sense accomplishment can boost those slow days.

Say no

It can be difficult to say no sometimes, however you must put the task at hand, first. Working on a freelance basis means that some days you might not have work, and some days you might be completely booked. You need to realise your own capacity of how much work you can do. Saying ‘no’ will allow you to work on the tasks to the best of your ability.

Avoid distractions

This is probably the most important in terms of time management. Phones tend to be a big distraction, unless you need social media for your work, avoid it. If your phone is not vital to the success of your work, put it away and leave it on silent so it doesn’t become a distraction.

Take time out

Occasionally you may need to take some time out. It will ensure that you are able to mentally stay focused. Sleep and regular exercise are also advised as they ensure a high functioning mind. As a freelance worker, you might not work traditional hours, but you must ensure that you have a clock out time to avoid overworking.

Managing and maximising your time will ensure as smooth as can be working schedule, to ensure that you are able to work effectively.

More on how to deal with stress as a freelancer


27th November 2017

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