Behind the Scenes: a Typical Day as a Freelance Designer

September 10, 2019

September 10, 2019

After quitting my 8-5 last year to pursue my own business as a freelance designer, I’ve had the freedom to figure out what my best day looks like. This new opportunity was nice, but it took me some time to finesse what actually worked best for me. I finally feel like I’ve settled in to my ideal routine below!

 

5:30/6:00 am

One of my favorite things about working for myself is being able to wake up without an alarm. This way I’m able to wake up naturally with the sun. I love mornings, but rather than jumping out of bed the second I wake up, falling back to sleep, or looking at my phone, I like to take it slow. I’ll drink a glass of water and think (not journal) about 3 things I’m grateful for to start the day on a positive note.

After that I usually incorporate some kind of workout, whether that’s a run, swim, studio class, or just a short yoga flow in my apartment. I find myself so much more energized for the rest of the day when I start with some kind of movement.

 

8 am

After working out and showering I’ll make myself a big breakfast, usually a smoothie and protein pancakes or eggs. I’ll also catch up on my favorite podcasts while cooking and eating (The Daily is my favorite way to get a quick update each day).

 

9 am

After breakfast I’ll dive into my most creative work. I feel most focused in the mornings so anything requiring a lot of creativity and a larger chunk of time happens early. Things like brainstorming concepts, working on sketches, and designing for new projects are typically my first priority so I’ll put my phone in another room to limit distractions and give these tasks my full attention.

 

12 pm

By noon Al comes home for lunch and we eat together. I’ll also occasionally attend a studio class at lunch time, typically a barre or yoga class. After lunch I’ll also take the time to actually get dressed and put myself together like a functioning human. This has become super important since I don’t work in an office and there’s nothing forcing me to look nice, but it helps a lot with my quality of work and mentality.

 

1 pm

The second half of the day I try to always go work somewhere outside of my apartment. Some days that means a coffee shop, but if it’s miserably cold or rainy I’ll just work downstairs in the community space of our building. I’ve found that getting out of the house (not to mention being around other people) is so helpful for my productivity and sanity! Plus, I really hate working in the same place for 8 hours straight so switching locations helps me reset in a way.

Afternoons I set aside for less creatively intense tasks, like design edits, checking emails, pitching to potential clients, and meetings with clients.

I’m also planning to start training to be a fitness instructor next year so I’ll hopefully be able to teach some classes in the afternoon as well!

 

4/5 pm

By 4 or 5 pm I’ll wrap up my work and Al comes home. We try to be really intentional with how we spend our evenings. Rather than feeling like the work week only consists of work, we try to do one thing a night like going for a walk, a swim, a bike ride, playing tennis in our social league, or even just having a movie night and actually watching the movie together without time on phones or laptops.

 

10 pm

I thoroughly enjoy taking my time in an evening routine, wrapping up the night with skincare and reading. I try to go to sleep 7 hours before I plan to wake up, depending on my workout schedule for the next morning.

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