I’m not just being especially irreverent and preachy on the back cover of The Human Freelancer book – I really do work only two days a week usually. People think I’m taking the piss when I tell them that. “How?” they demand with eyebrows raised in disbelief whilst punting me in the shin.
Most of my magic is explained in the book, but here are three ways to liberate time to do more of what you love.
1. Shrink your outgoings
It’s quicker and easier than increasing your income which supposedly buys more freedom but generally means more work. Buying less shit you don’t really need or buying cheaper means less pressure to work every day of the week.
2. Bundle work together
Instead of stumbling between incompatible dribs and drabs, be forceful about what you work on and when. That means actively organising and prioritising bundles of related tasks ready for the days when you do work. And knowing what can be postponed when you don’t.
When someone says they work eight hours a day for five days a week, slap them gently on the chin until they admit how much of that time they spend procrastinating or otherwise avoiding and pretending to do work. You might feel guilty on the days you don’t work for a while, but at least you’ll be doing more of what you love and not flicking your bean over minesweeper.
Read the ‘Sort your shit out’ chapter.
3. Get away from the computer
Shopping online, social media and web browsing are the electronic equivalent of twiddling your thumbs. Especially so these days with enticing link bait like ‘Check out Kim Kardashian’s gulping fanny fart in a sausage factory you won’t believe what happens next’. When you cruise the Internet without purpose prepare to face an army of grasping charlatans ready to suck away your time into their global crap vortex.
Instead use your computer like a tool. Decide what needs doing on it, get it done then fuck off for a brew in the garden.
I’ve not written a chapter about hating computers because a) my freelance career would be fucked without them and b) I fear the apocalyptic day of binary awakening when they assume the logical role of our vengeful masters.
It’s better to actively decide how many days a week you prefer to work and how many days you deserve relentless fun, then arranging your freelance bits and bobs to accommodate your commitment. The alternative is to pop your leash on and let consumerism take you for a shit in the car park.
LOOK! There's a book full of this shit and more!
Self-help business books perpetuate the myth that success is relentless growth and more of everything means progress. They preach about bookkeeping and market research: things you might need to do of course. But let’s face it they’re fucking boring.
The Human Freelancer book is your antidote: stuffed full of emotional support and insightful advice for vulnerable newbies to self-employment like you.Buy it now