One of the challenges when it comes to freelance work, whether you’re writing ad copy or offering speech writing services, is staying motivated when you set your own schedule. When you work at home, on your own time, it can be a struggle to dig into the work when there are so many distractions.
Here are some tips to kickstart your day and get pumped to get some writing done:
Set a Coffee Ritual
This writer recommends 8 O’Clock Coffee beans. It’s not the fanciest brand, but you can find them at most grocery stores, and they’re affordable enough to keep on hand. The ritual of waking up every morning, grinding some beans, and letting them sit in the French press with almost-boiling water for five minutes not only gets you caffeinated — it also offers a small ritual that lets your brain shift gears so you can say “Okay, I’m about to start work, now!” You can switch coffee with Yerba Mate or black tea or whatever you prefer; it’s the ritual that really helps.
Start With a Run
Starting the day with exercise is a great way to get your mind going and stay in shape at the same time. The best part: it’s free.
If you’re not much of a coffee drinker, a tall glass of water and a B-Complex vitamin tablet is a healthy way to get your brain going. Combine with a caffeine pill and a One Daily tab and you’ve got yourself an energy drink you can chug in two seconds flat.
These syrupy, sweet drinks may not be all that good for you, but when you really need something to keep you going through the night, a couple of Rockstars or Red Bulls will do the trick. You can get all the caffeine and vitamins you’ll find in energy drinks from vitamin tablets and coffee, but the sweetness of these drinks hits those pleasure centers in the brain to help keep you going. If you enjoy carbonated refreshment, do yourself a favor and buy in bulk. Two dollars a can can really add up (maybe even to the point where you’re working just to pay for your caffeine addiction), but if you buy a 24 pack of Red Bull from Amazon, you can stock up for a little over a dollar a can.
Now, let’s get to the most important tip of all: sleep well, eat well, and drink a lot of water.
It’s easy to get to the point where you’re running on fumes and using caffeine to keep yourself going. When you get to that state, you will suffer and so will your work. Pace yourself and remember: what’s the point in setting your own hours if you don’t take a nap whenever you need one?
Gilbert S is a freelance writer and artist who lives in New Mexico with his wife and two cats. When not writing, Gil is usually busy drinking a quart of coffee at a time. When writing, Gil is usually busy drinking a quart of coffee at a time.