Something that I really enjoy sharing is my hour, on the hour, for a day over on Instagram Stories. I’m notoriously terrible at updating my Stories because most of my day is spent hunched over my desk, working on projects for my clients that I of course keep confidential.
However with business ownership and freelancing on the rise, I thought it’d make a great post on here too, capturing the finer moments of my daily routine and showing you what’s really like to be a business owner. Here was my Monday, 22nd October, 2018. (Spoiler: it isn’t very glam!)
I tend to wake up naturally at around 7am. I had a traditional 9-5 job for several years and it’s kind of ingrained in me to get up at this time, get ready in super-speed time and crack on. I used to leave my house at 7.34am in order to catch the first of many trains in order to get to London for work!
These days I wake up at 7am, drink a glass of water, cast an eye over my emails from my phone (strictly no opening!), and make a coffee. I controversially then get back in bed, laptop in tow this time, read for 30 minutes and then work through my emails. From bed.
It’s long gone 8am and my emails are usually somewhat complete by now. I’ve been following that method where I only check my emails thrice daily: morning, lunch and again an hour or so before I sign off for the day. I do also sneak a peek in between in case something urgent pops up, but that’s what I have Slack for.
Once my emails are done, I get ready for the day and grab breakfast.
Dog walk! I really enjoy going for a leisurely dog walk after the rush. I used to take Milo a touch earlier but found there were far too many other dog walkers around, and prefer a quieter, more antisocial walk. Milo is nervous around dogs having been jumped on by larger, off-lead dogs when he was a puppy. We’re out for around 45 minutes usually.
Home from the walk and suitably damp. I bathe Milo and then settle in to work. For me, this looks like admin tasks during the day because I’m a total night owl.
Admin tasks typically include: chasing invoices, calculating and issuing invoices, collating receipts and sending them to my bookkeeper, following up on on-boarding emails, replying to Instagram messages and queries on my business account, and updating the website. Today, it looks a lot like invoicing, checking my invoice tracker, sending some outreach emails and preparing a contract for a new client.
I’m really bad at lunch breaks. I LOVE them, but always glance at my clock at 12pm, decide I’ll go ‘in a minute’ and before you know it, an hour has passed. Look in the fridge and decide I’ll make a wrap later.
Time anxiety is getting the better of me. I have Pilates at quarter past and it takes 10 minutes to drive to my gym, I’ll need to park, walk up and get to the studio. Help!
Post-Pilates and I feel much more relaxed. The reason I do my admin in the morning is because I write badly in the mornings, but I also feel incredibly anxious almost every day because there’s work that isn’t being done. Double-edged sword, but working out always helps.
Back to my desk and I’m ready to work, albeit clad in gym wear. Today I’m focusing on two clients, which is the maximum I let myself book in on any day so as to allow for full focus. I’m writing 250 product descriptions for a fashion client. They’re a long-term retainer client of mine and I thrive on projects like these. I enjoy the precision, adding the technical details, and putting a little stylish twist on the copy. The deadline is in 4 days so I divvy it up, make a note in my bullet journal and crack on. 83 descriptions a day, and then one for proof-reading and edits.
Disaster. Forgot to send off some documents (old school), so I’m driving back towards town where I literally JUST was, to the Post Office, cursing myself because now I have to pay again for parking. Have a quick blog/Instagram catch-up while parked outside my house.
Let’s try again… 83 descriptions won’t write themselves.
Have a spark of inspiration for an editorial brief. Unsure when to pitch it and which client to deliver it to as of yet, but decide to take some time to note it all down ready to be fleshed out with more concrete research at a later date.
It’s a good day when I finish work at 6pm. I break up my working day from my leisure evening by taking a shower, but want to prep for tomorrow’s client tonight, so I decide to grab a coffee and then continue. I could also do with reviewing my cash flow…
Tomorrow’s client is another fashion one. I’m editing seasonal batches of product copy to sit alongside high-end pieces, and it’s actually ready for me to work on. I could start it tonight and have a leisurely morning tomorrow… Decide to do so.
Being called for dinner so I wrap up work and head downstairs.
Dinner done, shower done. I squeeze in some reading for 45 minutes.
Brought my laptop downstairs to the lounge to write a blog post while watching Strangers. I work two weeks in advance on Daisybutter and tonight I want to polish a post I wrote yesterday, as well as browse Tribe for monetised Instagram opportunities that I can work on on Friday, my designated ‘blogging afternoon’.
Upstairs, in my room, endlessly scrolling through the Making A Murderer Reddit. I am SO invested in this series guys. Pls help me. (And Steven. And Brendan.) I’ll probably spend the rest of my evening reading in tandem and watching a few YouTube videos.
FYI, I’m currently reading The Vanity Fair Diaries by Tina Brown and To Die For by Lucy Siegle, and my favourite YouTubers at the moment are Alix, Jessie and Katie.
Bedtime at last for this night owl.