Five Ways to Sneak in More Time for Gigs

When you have an actual life to balance- you know: relationships, kids, school, a real job, household chores, etc.- it can be hard to find time to fit in some moneymaking gigs. If you prioritize making extra cash, though, there are ways to sneak in some gig time and maximize your overall productivity. Here are five ways that other successful freelancers sneak in time to work on gigs.
1- Get up early. Setting your alarm just 30 minutes earlier nets you a full 2.5 hours of extra time to get stuff done during a typical workweek. Waking up before everyone else in the household also makes it easier to work because no one is bugging you about making breakfast or helping them do things around the house.
2- Take advantage of lines and waiting rooms. Bring your laptop, notebook or tablet along with you when you’re headed to the doctor’s office with the kids, to the bank, or to school to pick up the kids. When you’re waiting in line or in the waiting room, you can work on a few tasks for an online crowdsourcing company, look for upcoming in-person gigs on job boards, sketch out crafting ideas, or compose an email to schedule or confirm a live gig. This also works if you’re waiting in the stands during your child’s soccer game or waiting at the airport in the car when picking up a relative. Pretty much anywhere you would otherwise be sitting bored with nothing to do, use that situation to your advantage.
3- Give up an hour of TV time. If you watch more than an hour of TV a day, narrow down your viewing to eliminate an hour of shows and use that time for working on gigs. This goes for Internet browsing and listening to music, too. If you’ve got a passive hobby taking up most of your free time, shift your priorities to spend more of your time improving your income situation. You don’t have to give it up entirely- just cut back enough to add a little extra gig time in.
4- Get a Crockpot. I’m not kidding. With a crockpot, you just toss in the ingredients in the morning and let it cook all day instead of spending an hour at night in the kitchen making dinner or 30 minutes driving to the local fast food place to get something because you don’t have time to cook. Instead of cooking or driving, spend 30-60 minutes before dinner working on gigs. You can even hide in the kitchen while you work so your family thinks you’re slaving over a hot stove and won’t bug you. If you can master microwave cooking, that works too.
5- Stock up on chores. Instead of multitasking and trying to switch gears between doing a chore, then working for 10 minutes, then doing another chore…switch to a plan where you do all of your chores on one day and spend the next day working on gigs instead. Weekends are a good time to implement a plan like this. For example, you could dedicate 4 hours on Saturday to cleaning the house and doing backyard chores, then spend those same hours Sunday working on your gigs.

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