If you are self-employed and work at home, you'll know how organised you need to be to pull it off successfully. I juggle so many things at once as a full-time blogger and journalist- including the back-end maintenance of my own two sites, answering my emails and reading press releases, pitching collaborations, researching new product launches, attending events, tracking my income and expenses, planning my editorial calendar, photography and actually writing all the content I need to write.
I wanted to share with you an insight into some of the ways that I keep myself organised and always moving forwards.
On the first of every month, I update my blog and social media stats document to reflect the previous month. This means I always have up-to-date figures, and clear visible goals to beat the following month. I keep this document on my phone for easy access when brands request it.
I plan my own sites' content 3-4 weeks in advance; sometimes longer if I have had a lot of press samples arrive or have been to a lot of events. I do this in a personalised planner from Personal Planner UK, and I decorate it each week just to make it more fun. In this planner, I also plan my exercise and meals for the week (as I am on the 5:2 Diet). Every morning, I will sit down with a cup of tea and ensure my planner is up-to-date and make any changes that need to be made. At the moment I am loving the British Mint and Caramel Tea (£15 for 85g box) from Quinteassential as it has a gentle sweet mint flavour. It's refreshing, caffeine-free and can also curb my sugar cravings.
Every Sunday, I take a big block of blog photos in my home studio. I have a dedicated room where all my samples that come in are kept, along with my camera equipment, lights, backgrounds, props, soft boxes etc. I make sure I have all the images for the following week's posts edited and sorted into folders also. I don't write the text of my posts more than a day in advance usually; but my images are all carefully prepared long before then. Press releases for samples and events are kept in a folder on my desk, and once the post is written, these are discarded as I don't have the space to keep them.
On my phone, I keep a weekly To Do list sorted by day. EVERYTHING I need to do each day is on this; including phone calls and when all my freelance articles and column etc needs written. I also have a small slim diary that I carry in my handbag to record upcoming out of the house appointments, so that if I am arranging meetings on the go, away from my planner, I don't double book myself.
Finance-wise, I keep my expenses receipts in a small accordion file. I keep a monthly document on my computer with all the money due to be paid to me that particular month, and remove an entry when it has received. I also have an accounting spreadsheet where I log everything I earn over the financial year. This makes self-employment tax returns so much easier to fill in.
I hope this post is helpful if you are trying to be better organised. Remember to always plan and organise thoroughly- "Go the extra mile, it's never crowded". I sent myself this postcard (£1.61) from the Inkly app to keep me motivated.
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