This much we know
Over the years experience has revealed that a subtle shift in perspective can often have a hugely positive impact. Whilst there’s still much we don’t know we wanted to share some of the things we have found to be helpful in our day to day.
A computer screen isn’t the answer to every question
It is good to step away from your computer once in a while. Staring at a screen can stagnate your thoughts instead of generating ideas. Whilst your computer can help to facilitate an idea, its not always the right tool for every job. We like to get physical, look at books, brainstorm, take pictures, build lego, draw.
Don’t be all sizzle and no sausage
Maybe you just need to start again
3 cups of coffee before lunch is probably unnecessary
It feels good to say no
At the beginning, whether freelancing or setting up your own business, you often have to take on work you don’t really want to do. It’s not ideal but you’ve got to pay those bills.
However, one of the best things about being your own boss is that you can say no, for me personally those moments have proved to be some of the most liberating I’ve had and a real marker of progress. Easier said than done I know but I can’t recommend enough getting your finances to a place where you have a bit of breathing room.
As the saying goes ‘a principle isn’t a principle until it costs you money’. By saying no to work you are establishing certain parameters as to how you want to work and the values you believe in as being more important than financial gain. Over time those decisions solidify in to a working culture and define who you/your business is.
Enjoy it when it’s good, don’t panic when it’s not
The nature of freelance work is fluctuant, but that doesn’t mean that you have to be emotionally. After you’ve been doing it for a while, you can get to grips with the seasons of work and learn to relax when things aren’t as vibrant as you want. Use that time to enjoy your personal projects – that time is valuable for self promotion. And when times are good – step back and take a moment to enjoy that too, because thats why you are doing this.
It’s ok to switch off your emails for a couple of hours
Work Life Balance
Long hours are over rated
Don’t confuse what people ask for with what they need
Your job as a designer is to help people achieve a set of objectives and your skill is knowing how to do that with design. Quite often a client will set a brief with just the end result in mind – but without being obstinate, your role is to ask the right questions and figure out the best path – ‘why do you need a website?’ and ‘what do you need it to do?’. Be confident in your knowledge and abilities to take the lead.
Do one thing at a time
I think that years of swiping through images and posts on our iPhones has made us unfocused and impatient. Focusing on one task at a time is so fulfilling and unsurprisingly helps you to achieve so much more! Act like your mother: write a list and do one thing at a time. Put the worst things at the top of your list and do those first. Its such a relief when they’re done.
Don’t be smug, don’t get complacent
Best not to reply to emails when you’re angry
Tempting as it is to reply all guns blazing to whoever might have been foolish enough to cross you, a raging argument over email isn’t known for it’s business benefit. Also bear in mind that email’s not a great format for reading the nuances of mood or tone, so there is a chance you just misunderstood. Either way, might be best to step back and have a couple of jaffa cakes before letting fly with what you really think