December is drawing to a close. The month when most people I know spend time reflecting on the fading year, reviewing personal plans, and setting goals for the next year.
Making New Year resolutions has been one of my customs for many years. I don’t make many at a time; just a few and I keep them. This year I’m doing things a little different because I have only one goal. To quit.
That’s right. I’m quitting. Stuff.
Giving up some of my regular habits will help me become more productive and certainly a much happier person. I mused over the possibilities (with the help of Rockbern’s coffee and a slice of cheesecake) and it thrilled me to identify three things I could quit in 2019.
I hate the current size of my personal Inbox. You know how you visit a site because you came across an interesting article, tutorial, or some other useful stuff? If you download anything, you’re almost sure to be added to a mailing list for newsletters and email marketing.
I’m happy with the initial downloads (paid or free) but I can’t keep up with the subsequent stream. For me, deleting emails is not the answer. When looking at a long list of unread messages, if I see a topic that looks interesting, I’m tempted to move it to my “To Do” folder. Stress!
I’m an Inbox zero fanatic which means catching up on all emails in all folders by the end of the week, except for those that belong to an ongoing project.
UnrollMe, here I come. I’m getting rid of almost all subscriptions. Yay! That will save me at least 90 minutes each day, not to mention the stress of having many unread messages.
2. Udemy Courses
An Entire MBA Course by Chris Haroun, Lindsay Marsh’s amazing Complete Graphic Design Theory course, Digital Marketing Masterclass, the one that’s 23–courses–in–1. When Udemy runs a $9.99promotion, you can get some excellent courses. Like the three I’ve mentioned, all great trainers with valuable content.
There’s one problem. A day has only so many hours and I can’t possibly find time to go through endless hours of training. A girl’s got to work!
My love for learning (and tinkering with tech) predates my freelancing career and I don’t see it dying out soon.
Here’s the deal. I have enough untouched tutorials to last me at least one year of paced, focused learning. For reals. Moreover, the courses I’m hoarding all have practical exercises in areas I’m passionate about, so it will take time to do them properly.
I will schedule time to go through my library. Courses are already grouped neatly into collections and the plan is to focus on only one collection each month. Keeping it real, I don’t have to finish all the courses in one collection within the month!
3. Long Days
Freelancing gives you the freedom to start your workday at whatever hour you choose and end it whenever.
I have clients in the US, Canada, and Australia, roughly eight hours behind and eight hours ahead of my time zone. It would be okay to start my day at 6:00 pm Australian and end it at 1:00 pm US time. That way, I can touch base with clients in real time.
All good? Not quite.
What happens with me on most days is I will be up and about earlier and finish my day later, especially if I’m transcribing a very interesting topic, or working on a social media project or tweaking a WordPress design.
I get carried away by the interestingness of the work at hand and behave like the kid who pleads for, “Just one more,” at bedtime. That has to stop!
I have no problem starting my day at the same hour each day but in future, I will set a reminder to beep 90 minutes before the time I have scheduled my workday to end. That should draw me out of any rabbit hole I may have wandered into.
I feel energised already: the thought of shedding off three time bandits and reclaiming precious time in the process!
Over to you
Is there anything you want to quit? I’d love to hear about your 2019 resolutions.
Wishing you all a productive New Year!