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My Work From Home Diary – A Day In The Life of a Freelancer

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Rebecca is a newlywed and an aspiring fiction author that got her start in content creation five years ago with her beauty and lifestyle based blog and YouTube channel.

Hi there Home Office Career readers! If you’ve been reading the blog regularly this month (I definitely encourage you to) you may recognize me. If not, my name is Rebecca Kelsey Sampson and I’m a freelance writer (mostly).

Today I’m going to share with you a little insight into my day to day work life as a freelancer through an hour by hour diary. I thought this would be a fun project to share with you all since everyone tends to have very different work from home experiences.

Before we get started, you may want to check out my work from home journey to get a little insight into who I am and how I came to work as a writer.

 

Hour By Hour Diary – Thursday, September 3, 2015

7 AM: I slept pretty horribly the night before so while I would normally wake up at this time, I instead angrily turned off my alarm and curled back into my crowded bed with my husband, dog, and cat.

8 AM: Okay, I’m up! I got dressed in the outfit I planned out the night before, brushed my teeth, washed my face, and headed downstairs.

As I mentioned in my 5 Tips for Stress Relief post, I love starting my day by spending time with nature and writing down what I’m grateful for so I went on a short walk with my dog and then spent some time writing in my journal while eating breakfast.

My morning breakfast changes day to day but for today in particular I enjoyed some fruit and iced coffee. I’m definitely getting too into coffee lately.

Since I woke up on the wrong side of the bed today, I also ignored my dishes. On days that I do get up at 7 I’ll usually do housework before I get ready for the day.

9 AM: Work time. I’m quickly planning out my to-do list and my top three priorities using my Day Designer planner. I currently have two regular writing clients so I always start my day by opening up my Google Drive and writing my assignments for them before anything else has the opportunity to distract me.

Though I did get a little distracted by YouTube. It happens. Now I know the benefits of Himalayan Salt Lamps so it’s a win win.

10:30 AM: After finishing my first two assignments I spend a little time looking for new jobs to apply to. I have a few regular places I check but first things first I go to the HOC job board since they are filled daily with opportunities that have been screened for scams.

There are many work from home scams out there though so I always proceed with caution and follow these tips to help keep myself from being tricked by fraudulent posts.

If anything catches my eye, I’ll add it to my list of jobs to apply to on one of my Google docs.

11 AM: I meant to start a different project at 11 but instead I’m currently editing an experimental spoken word video. I’m not kidding. I just felt like expressing my poetry for some reason and when inspiration strikes, I’ve got to take advantage. I also eat an early lunch around this time. Remember don’t work through lunch!

If I know I have to cook lunch, I’ll usually plan it out the night before so it’s easier for me the next day. Today in particular though my husband made my lunch for me since he is also a remote worker.

12:30 PM: Now I get back into business. In addition to my freelance writing, I also work as a Social Media Evaluator for Appen. I do about 20 hours a week with this company so I work four hours a day, five days a week looking at Facebook posts and rating them based on certain criteria. I’ve signed a nondisclosure agreement with this company so I can’t go into details about how it works but I have to say that it is a lot harder of a job than it sounds, trust me.

I’m happy to have the opportunity to work as a Social Media Evaluator to supplement my income but it is not something I want to continue with long term. I’m working on marketing my blog and YouTube channel to be more lucrative (along with taking on more writing assignments) so that I can one day replace the work I do for this company.

4:30 PM: Phew, I’m done for now with my work for Appen. At this time I generally take a break to go on another walk with my dog to give my hands and wrists a rest. I have developed carpal tunnel syndrome in the three years since leaving college because of all of this additional typing work. It has been a bit frustrating to deal with since it does impact my livelihood but taking frequent breaks and doing different stretches has helped somewhat.

Plus, I really enjoy the walks I take with my dog. It helps center me and adds more steps to my otherwise chair ridden day.

However, I live in Miami and as I’m writing this Tropical Storm Erika is on the way so instead of spending time with nature and my pet (bummer) I’m going to drive to a nearby store to get possible hurricane supplies.

[Update from future Rebecca: Thank goodness! The storm made a beeline for the Gulf of Mexico and is no longer heading towards me and my family. I hope it stays away from your home as well.]

5:30 PM: I’m back home now after a stressful shopping trip and am back to writing. From now until I stop work at 7 I plan to write for my blog and other clients, taking breaks in between projects to send in more applications and pitches to the prospective clients I discovered through job boards.

The tough thing about being a freelance writer is that you always have to be looking for work because having regular clients that cover all of your financial needs isn’t always possible.

7 PM: I am happy now to be done with work for the day. Since I take many breaks and also work on personal projects during these hours I usually stay “on the clock” until 7 rather than a traditional 9 to 5 scenario.

After work I tend to read, write poetry, work on my novel (my main career goal is to be a young adult fiction writer), and/or binge watch Netflix with my husband. We’re currently trying to catch up with The X-Files before the mini series in January.

Somewhere in between these activities I’ll also have a big dinner.

Certain things shift an hour or two ahead or an hour back depending on my goals for the week but generally this is what a typical work day looks like for me.

 

My Typical Work Week

I’d also like to mention that I generally work these 9 – 7 hours on Monday – Tuesday and then Thursday – Friday.

I also work on Saturdays but I follow a very relaxed routine. I tend to work in sporadic bursts throughout the day and mix in things I love to do like writing for my novel and filming videos for my YouTube channel. Since running a YouTube channel is a lot of work, I batch film and edit 3 – 4 videos every weekend.

Wednesdays and Sundays are family days and I usually go on dates with my husband or we’ll see friends on Friday and Saturday nights.

Working from home has been a strange and fun adventure for me and it has brought me to a place where I genuinely love to work. The long hours don’t bug me, though the carpal tunnel in my hand is becoming more of a bother.

I’m really excited to see how my life and my work develops over time, especially when my husband and I start to have children in the coming years.

 

What does your typical work from home routine look like? Do we have any work habits in common? Do let me know in the comments because I love to learn more about how other people structure their day

Home Office Careers is not just a job board site and a blog, it’s a community. Your comments mean a lot.

Talk to you all soon!
Rebecca

2 Responses to “My Work From Home Diary – A Day In The Life of a Freelancer”

  1. jacisnyder@gmail.com' Jaclyn Snyder says:

    Good morning. I have recently taken the leap of faith and choose to begin working from home. I have signed up with home office careers and that is where I found you wonderful tips. I am doing my best to find jobs but seeing how I am brand new to all of this I was wondering if you could give me any tips on companies that are willing to hire with no previous experience? Any help you could provide I will greatly appreciate it. Thank you for all the articles.
    Jaclyn

    • Hello Jaclyn! We are so happy to have you as a member of Home Office Careers – and glad you’re enjoying our blog articles! No worries on not having any previous experience working from home! The types of jobs companies are hiring to do from home are just like those you would do in a traditional office setting! I would be more than happy to send you over some suggestions in terms of jobs that may be a fit for you based on your past work experience. Feel free to send me an email (stephanie@homeofficecareers.com) with some more info and I will help the best I can. Take care!

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