Eliminate distractions from your work day

Time is money. If you're like most people, you probably think of this as an excuse to work harder and make more money. The truth is that time really does equal money, but only if you're working efficiently and not wasting your precious hours on distractions or unproductive tasks. The key to doing more with less time isn't just about working harder—it's about working smarter too.


Make a list of things you need to do and prioritize it

There are two main components to this method: making a list of things you need to do, and prioritizing that list. This is extra important for freelancers. 

  • Make a list of things you need to do. This is the easy part—just write down anything you can think of that needs your attention.

  • Prioritize the list. Now comes the hard part—prioritizing your tasks based on their importance and urgency.  Seperate items that should be completed as soon as possible;  items that should be completed within a few days; items that should be done in a week or so; and so on. 

  • Add more items as they come up throughout the day if needed. Most people have at least one thing they didn't think about until after their lists were already made.


Be strict with your time, even if it means being harsh with friends and colleagues.

The next tip is to be strict with your time, even if it means being harsh with friends and coworkers. It's okay to say no.  Be honest about how much you can give them, and let them know when they're taking up too much of your time.

If they push back on this, that’s their fault—not yours. 😀

The last step is to set aside an hour at the end of each day where you can relax without distractions like notifications from social media apps or other people asking for help before getting started on work tomorrow—and then actually do it.

Get your work done first

  • You'll feel better being able to relax and enjoy your free time.

  • You'll be able to spend more quality time with family, friends, and other loved ones.

  • You won't be constantly worrying about what you may have forgotten or left unfinished at the office.

To accomplish this task, set up a daily routine so that you always know exactly what needs to be accomplished before anyone else gets in touch with you. This way, even if there are delays or unforeseen circumstances that make it impossible for them to contact someone else on the team first thing in the morning as planned (which happens more often than not), no one will have any reason whatsoever for contacting someone else until all parties involved have had ample time getting their own work done beforehand - including yourself.

Don't think about work when you're not working

The most important thing you can do is to separate your freelance work life from your personal life. You need to know that when you stop at the end of the day, all of your work responsibilities are behind you. If possible, take a break from thinking about work for a few hours before bedtime.

The key here is not only setting priorities but sticking with them as well—don’t bring problems "home" with you! Create a different space for work and personal time.

Take breaks when you need to, but make them productive.

  • Take breaks when you need to.

  • Don't take breaks to watch TV or play video games.

  • Take a walk, go for a run, or go to the gym.

  • Take a nap, or meditate.

  • Take a break to do some deep breathing.


You can discipline yourself to do more work in less time and still be rewarded for your efforts.

You can discipline yourself to do more work in less time and still be rewarded for your efforts.

The key is discipline: setting aside time each day and sticking to it even if we're tempted by other things (even if those other things seem important). We may feel like we need breaks from our work, but breaks aren't as important as getting work done; they're only necessary when we've reached our limit for productivity at that moment in time—and even then, they should be brief so we can get back into the groove of accomplishing something meaningful again!

I hope you found these tips helpful. If you want to be more productive and get things done, it's all about discipline. You can do it. 

Find more jobs at the ProZ.com jobs board.

Topics: freelancer, jobs

Mike Donlin

Written by Mike Donlin


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