As a freelancer, I normally charge by the hour or by project. Either way, I track every second I spend working for my clients, including any meetings.
I also track other activities, including pitching new clients, marketing my business, and admin such as paying bills.
How many people who work full time for one company do the same thing? Do you know how many hours you fritter away on pointless tasks? How often do you feel like you’re overwhelming busy, but you don’t seem to get much done?
There’s a difference between being productive and being busy. Now that I track everything I do in my work day, I can easily see where I’m spending my time. If I’m not getting much done (or I’m not completing the important stuff), then I know why. And I take action to correct that.
I also (try to) use the Pomodoro method where I set a timer for 20 minutes and then take a five-minute break at the end of that period. And repeat.
Do you have any productivity hacks you’d like to share? How do you make sure you’re taking care of the important tasks rather than just doing “busy” work?