What to Do When: Guide for the Self-Employed

What to Do When: Guide for the Self-Employed


Rock painting found near Thiruvathavur, Madurai, Tamil Nadu, dated about 30,000 BCE. Image: மு.கேசவன் (K7.india) via Wikimedia Commons.

When all your time is your own, how do you decide what to do next?

The next time you feel you are spinning your wheels, RAISING CLARITY advises you turn them into concentric circles that will help you figure out what to do next.

1. Outer circle: what season is it? Seriously.

Right now, it’s Fall. A very good time for cleaning up, clearing out, new projects, new people, new strategies.

A terrible time for status quo. (Let it go and see what wants to stick around instead.) Work with the rhythm of the seasons to structure the natural cycle of your achievement year.

What is the rhythm of the seasons? Your body knows it: Fall is the origin point when everything goes back to zero. Winter is all about what’s going on beneath the surface. (If it doesn’t freeze first, it won’t flower later. Trust the peace and quiet.) Spring? You got it–it’s all in the name. (Fall falls, Spring springs!) Summer is the obvious season: we see the fruits of our labors. At Summer’s end, we Harvest. For more, see the categories for each season on our blogsite.

2. Middle concentric circle: what day is it, because what do you want to accomplish this week? If you don’t have a goal, MAKE ONE UP. Say it’s the end of the week: what will you be thrilled to have accomplished?

Choose one thing. Orient the week to that; you will be motivated and proud of yourself; everything else will fall in line, and you will get a lot more done than just your one thing. (Sneaky but true.)

Think of your ONE THING as a five-part goal. (Five days, five parts to your weekly thing you want to accomplish.) Break it into the rhythm of beginning, middle, end. Even if it is nearly the end of the week right now. You can plan for next week and that can be your one thing you got done this week. 

3. Inner concentric circle: YOUR rhythm. What time of day is it?

What do you like best to do when? I am most coherent in the morning. But I am kind of uptight in the morning, too. I am most creative in the afternoon.

When am I writing this blog post? In the afternoon. When do I do my planning, number-crunching, research? In the morning. 

What if you are the opposite? NOTICE YOUR OWN RHYTHMS and work with them. Love yourself and your work that much.

What if you mess up? So what?!  You are self-employed.

You get a whole ‘nother day, week, and season to keep right on getting this right. It is the most wonderful skill and opportunity. It will serve you well so you can serve others well.Enjoy, be fruitful, and multiply–at whatever time of day works for you!

PS: For more posts on self-organizing, there are several linked to this useful post. For all our posts on “Getting Organized, go here.

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