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While working on net, there are so many things which make us loose our concentration and it becomes more difficult if you are a freelance graphic designer. The overly hyped social media has made it more challenging to achieve maximum targets in limited time. Don’t get me wrong when I blame “social media” here, I have given my reasons below ;) Actually, I personally believe social media to be a huge world and one can easily be lost once in the territory. As a graphic designer, I have an idea how easily graphic designers get distracted, failing to give best results. Therefore, today I bring some useful tips to help you keep yourself focused and more productive.

In a typical job, it is not that difficult to keep attentive but for freelancers it is very tough to stay dedicated and be on schedule. Here I have to confess that many times I end day dreaming, failing to achieve my targets :(

Still, I am working hard to make improvements and would like to share this list of tips which I aim to follow. Not to forget, many times graphic designers follow crazy tips to be creative. Therefore, don’t stick to this list and share your innovative ways to be productive.

Let’s begin here:

1 ) Line up all your tasks: Before you open your laptop, pick up a piece of paper and a pen. Roughly list down your tasks. Don’t forget to prioritize your to-do-list, so you know clearly which things should be taken care first. The biggest disadvantage of not having a task list is that you spend all day working on things that seem to be benefiting your business, but in the end you realize that you are not focused in the right direction.
2 ) Finish your pending work: For me this tip is the most effective and important one…rather than starting new assignments, try to complete your pending tasks before you start with a new task. The biggest responsibility as a freelancer is to finish all your projects on time….grabbing number of projects at the same time, can get you into trouble.
3 ) Explore your most energetic hours: One cannot be active and creative round the clock. There are certain hours when we are able to give our best performance in short span of time. Explore yourself and try to identify your most energetic hours. Early morning when you are not in real work mood, start with tasks that are less demanding mentally. Save your most energetic hours for your important projects.

4 ) A nap or lunch break won’t harm: No book of rules recommend working non-stop to be productive and efficient. After working for consistent hours, there is no harm if you take a short nap or go for a walk to regain your senses. Don’t be harsh with yourself; be flexible with the changing circumstances around.


5 ) Fix an alarm to buzz you: Place a huge alarm clock on your work desk to ring you when it’s winding time. Always fix a dead line for yourself and make it a target to finish up your work within the time assigned. This way you will know which project takes most of your time, so then you can readjust it with other errands.


6 ) Define time for social media: Social media is the most happening thing on the net and one of the biggest resources to get tons of traffic. It always happens with me that once I begin with the social media, I completely lose my check on time and usually end up reading interesting blog posts, with my work left incomplete. So always beware, confine your social media to limited time.


7 ) Multitasking: There are so many different things to do, therefore it’s better to categorize them. Try to do bigger projects first and line up similar things aside to be done all at once. In short, divide your day into small parts and be clear when to do what. Don’t dedicate your full day to a single project…try getting smaller things done along with an important project.


8 ) List your resources of research: We all have some timeless resources which always strike you with creative ideas. Always bookmark these resources of your daily use and have them on your desktop so that every time you don’t have to waste your time searching them.


9 ) Checking Emails:Limit your time for checking and replying emails, networking with friends: Checking email many times throughout the day may lead to more time than necessary. Maintaining email boxes, is a never ending work for freelancers. Getting a little bit behind for a few days can quickly lead to an unmanageable amount of email. Therefore, do check your emails regularly but restrict yourself to limited time.


10 ) Eat healthy and exercise regularly: One of the biggest disadvantage of working as a freelancer is that we get very irresponsible with our eating habits and body maintenance. If we are into any 9 to 5 job, we make an adjustment to stop by the gym on our way back. However, working from home makes you careless about yourself. Don’t forget, you will be more productive and creative if you are healthy.

Now you speak:

I think I have given quiet a long lecture ;) Do you agree that working on these tips will help you be more productive as a graphic designer? If you think there are more ways to produce better results within limited time, so please come ahead and share your experiences.


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  1. Donna Watson On December 16th, 2009 at 12:56 pm

    ALL are great tips…I’d add: Get up often even if just for a minute or two…move around…do some jumping jacks…DON’T sit at your desk for hours at a time…It’ll keep you fresh (and burn more calories!)

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  1. LukeSF On December 16th, 2009 at 6:21 pm

    That’s a really interesting thing… Found some things I’m definitely missing… Though was happy to find most I tend to keep to… Thanks for putting all this together. Great job!

  1. Laurent JOUVIN On December 16th, 2009 at 10:19 pm

    There’s one more item we could add to your list and that is distraction. Email is one easy way to lose focus and creative flow; but let’s not forget about phones and all the social network sites we’re all addicted to. Constant communication has become a necessity for any business, but we should not let it get in the way of creativity.

  1. valentines day gifts On December 17th, 2009 at 2:09 am

    Very interesting task.I have gone through the post and have enjoyed to browse it.I am graphic designer.I will definitely try all these steps…Thanks for sharing such a great post here…

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  1. theLULAdesigns On December 17th, 2009 at 10:55 am

    Great tips with good insight. I would add that in our highly digitized society it is easy to forget that one does not have to communicate IMMEDIATELY. If you are working on a deadline, make sure that you prioritize your communications as well. If you can email or call later then give yourself that time to work on the task at hand.

  1. Jenny On December 17th, 2009 at 2:00 pm

    Great tips. Thanks.

  1. mike On December 18th, 2009 at 2:51 pm

    Thanks for the posting.
    How very true, what a great list.
    Defining time for social media is key. It can be so addictive!

  1. matin On December 19th, 2009 at 4:12 am

    I guess it doesn’t just help you to be better designer but it can also be used to be a better person….It was great.enjoyed it a lot.thx

  1. Eric Chiu On December 19th, 2009 at 6:07 am

    what is the meaning of this tip ? “Eat healthy and exercise regularly”

  1. ryanMoultrup On December 19th, 2009 at 2:24 pm

    These are all great tips for productivity. I have to say from my own experience that exercise is the most important. I had neglected my exercise program for a few months and found myself overly stressed and not getting as much accomplished as I’d liked to have. Once I got my act together and started exercising regularly again I was amazed at how much better I felt and was able to accomplish. One of the most important factors in any business is your attitude and exercise is the key to a positive attitude.

  1. STRAIGHTALK On December 20th, 2009 at 6:31 am

    Now this is a bit more than just TIPS for a designer most of them are actually trying to make a better YOU but You can grab the POINT..

    Sometimes we do have to use Moderation in order to get things to fit into those right places..

    Nice JOB my Friend Great article(s).

  1. Koocha On December 20th, 2009 at 10:14 am

    Thanks for that. Also, feel free to browse my new site with lots of design stuff collected from Internet

  1. naveed On December 21st, 2009 at 4:53 am

    thank you so much they are very very useful :)


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  1. Adroid On December 22nd, 2009 at 1:24 pm

    Great list to keep you on track. I find a good way to spark a little creativity after being in front of the computer forever is to grab a camera, go outside, and start shooting. Doing something else creative usually helps spark ideas when I sit back down at the computer.

  1. Web Design Kilkenny On December 22nd, 2009 at 3:39 pm

    I think we all have different ways in which we like to work but at the end of day time management is the key!

    If you don’t manage time it ends up managing you!


  1. designfollow On December 22nd, 2009 at 8:03 pm

    very useful

    thank you

  1. Luke Southwell On December 25th, 2009 at 9:52 am

    I always do number one before starting to work o some tasks. I am making it sure that I have planned it out well. Great list BTW!!

  1. Martin Agius On December 31st, 2009 at 11:18 am

    Great Post. Simply great post.

    Although we all know these things, otherwise you wouldn’t work as freelance.. someone putting it in writing just makes it all so much simpler to accept..


  1. ProGigPosters On December 31st, 2009 at 4:08 pm

    Great points. Thanks for keeping me on track!

  1. Jodi Salisbury On December 31st, 2009 at 4:09 pm

    Great information for a freelancer. Thanks for your post. :)

  1. Logo Design Portfolio On January 1st, 2010 at 5:19 am


    Your tips are quite useful to me and for everybody. Tips are always helpful in every way weather in work or in life. Your thought is very impressive to me.

    Great Job!!!

  1. izdelava spletne strani On January 4th, 2010 at 9:04 am

    Very usefull tips. Specially no.9 If only people knew how much time they’re loosing checking their emails every few minutes.

  1. Andy Newcomb On January 9th, 2010 at 1:50 am

    Good, thoughtful list, but I would add one important feature to be a great designer; learn to use a spell checker, or perhaps learn to spell. You do work with type, right? Same goes for your lack of basic punctuation and frequently dropped words. Is English your second language? I suspect it might. Either that or you’re under 25 and have never read a book that didn’t have pictures of kitties in it.

    Two examples in your article is “loose” instead of “lose”, and I had to reread this one several times before I understood what you were trying to say, “I think I have given QUIET a long lecture…” You meant “quite”, correct?

    Let me ask you, would you be considered a good mechanic if you consistently had bolts left over that you forgot to put on?

    Would you be considered a good musician if you occasionally hit sour notes and didn’t seem to care?

    Well, if you don’t quiet know the difference between loose and lose, then maybe you should take up another profession besides graphic design. Just don’t work on automotive brakes or tire lugs, OK? People could die.

  1. Andy Eaton On January 9th, 2010 at 5:03 am

    this is an excellent list I will be following, I always find that when designing and its not going great I tend to start surfing and it puts me back a few hours, just taking a 10 min break might be better for me

  1. Charlie B. Johnson On January 11th, 2010 at 12:58 am

    Hi Andy….thanks for adding to the list and pointing out my mistakes. Wholeheartedly, I take this criticism but I would have appreciated your courtesy if you would have simply quoted my mistakes without being so sarcastic.

    Anyways, I always consider what my readers suggest and never delete their comments…positive or negative :)And yes…I have fixed the spelling errors, thanks.

  1. aalisha On January 20th, 2010 at 2:08 am

    Good post! I think it is useful not only for graphic designers but for everyone who works from home.

  1. r4 kaart On January 31st, 2010 at 1:59 pm

    Your right, I also have the problem of loosing concentration. Most of the time it happens to me when im searching for something i need and then I’m distracted when I find something interesting like your blog :)

  1. Trevor On February 5th, 2010 at 1:17 pm

    I always start work with the thing that I least want to do. That way it is out of the way as soon as possible and I can get on with the jobs I enjoy.

  1. Etta On March 30th, 2010 at 4:34 am

    I think number 10 “Eat healthy and exercise regularly” is far more important than most people realize, for the brain and creativity as well as the body.

  1. Internet Business Opportunity On August 10th, 2010 at 12:49 am

    Email is one easy way to lose focus and creative flow; but let’s not forget about phones and all the social network sites we’re all addicted to.

  1. Molyv Logo Design On August 19th, 2010 at 10:18 pm

    Thanks for this article! Its so true what we designers go through and have to take note of, especially on getting so into social media networking and tendency to spend way too much time on it!

  1. Wordpress On September 20th, 2010 at 4:40 am

    I personally believe social media to be a huge world and one can easily be lost once in the territory.

  1. Reputation Managers On December 28th, 2010 at 1:39 am

    It’s so true what the designers go through and have to take note of, especially on getting so into social media networking and tendency to spend way too much time on it!

  1. Logo Design On January 24th, 2011 at 2:37 pm

    Great points. I find having 3 set times dedicated to answering emails works wonders.

    Early Afternoon
    Once more before signing off for the day

  1. Matt On July 12th, 2011 at 10:40 pm

    These effing tips aren’t for graphic design. They’re for good goddamned living in general. Horrible article is horrible.

  1. Loreto On April 11th, 2012 at 4:41 pm

    Dude, when I’m reading your post I’m imagining my self sitting on my computer. It gives me a lot of ideas and points also disadvantages and advantages to be a freelancer. Well I’m just only planning to be on freelancing and being graphic designer I’m just only a newbie with this field, but I relate myself in your tips..

    Thanks a lot I will add your tips to my bookmark list..

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