Web designers tend to be creative people. And we all know that the creative mind is often not an overly punctual mind. Thus, there’s no surprise that many website designers struggle with procrastination and tend to leave things until the last minute of the deadline, or look to create an unnecessary perfection when the function is more appropriate. Here are a few time management tips for web designers.
Do you recognize yourself in this?
Stick around and learn what you can do today that will help you create more in less time.
Don’t Do To-Do Lists
Don’t? You mean do them right?
No, I mean don’t do to-do lists.
Creating to-do lists is not the most productive way to start your workday. Making lists often seems like doing something productive, but it’s not. For one, chances are you already have a pretty good idea of what tasks await you on a certain day. The second thing is that you can’t really plan everything ahead and most likely will have to deal with something unexpected during your workday.
Everything in your list may get shifted, you will have a panic attack, get fired and end up living in a cardboard box.
Okay, this is obviously the worst-case scenario, but you get the picture.
Nonetheless, if you set too strict deadlines you risk feeling stressed when you notice that you’re losing grip with your plans and wishes.
It’s better to set leaner deadlines and leave yourself more time for reviews. Ultimately you will be more satisfied with your work and progress.
Find Your Most Productive Time
Every person is different. As Taylor Swift puts it – “You’re lucky enough to be different, never change”.
But you do need to change a bit if you don’t know how to manage your time. One thing that’s very easy to achieve is to find the time of day when you’re most productive. Some of us are morning types, some of us are “don’t talk to me before my first coffee” types, and others are best concentrated for work in the night time. There’s no right or wrong here, you just find the time of the day that best suits you and leaves the most demanding tasks for that period.
Tracking time has multiple benefits for website designers. If you are a freelancer, you pretty much need to track time anyway to justify your billable hours. But, time tracking can have huge benefits even to in-house web designers. By learning how much time you spend on certain types of tasks, you can better plan your daily activities and identify bottlenecks in your work process.
When it comes to time tracking you have plenty of possibilities. You can try out the Pomodoro technique using a pen, paper, and an alarm clock to time your work in 25 min work periods, followed by 5 minutes of rest.
Or, you can use a time tracking app that has the option to show you printable timesheets and reports of your daily activities, like Clockify.
Don’t Forget To Take Breaks
It’s easy to forget to take breaks when the inspirational rush hits, or when you see the deadline closing fast. This can lead to an increase in mistakes and setbacks in your work, and it can even cause burnout, which is no joke. You can use break time to take a short walk and get some fresh air, which, by the way, is shown to increase energy in people. Meditation is another good way of restoring energy, calmness, and focus.
So, you must not look at breaks as a waste of your time. Quite the opposite, breaks can help you clear your mind, get new perspectives about the stuff you are doing and introduce a bit of a dynamic in your workday.
Learn To Use Your Tools More Efficiently
Web designers use many tools and apps on a daily bases. You can shave minutes and perhaps even more from your work process if you learn to use these tools more effectively.
Invest some time in streamlining your workflow by learning keyboard shortcuts and using various extensions and add-ons. The accumulated time you save this way can have a great impact on your performance and productivity.
Try Not To Be Too Much Of A Perfectionist
When aiming for perfection in your work you can actually waste your time by waiting for every detail to be just right. You can spend a lot of time tweaking everything and ultimately find yourself procrastinating as you wait for just the right time to mark your work as done.
Now, this doesn’t mean you should slack off and do a poor job. Just set realistic goals and don’t be afraid of making mistakes too much.
Don’t Visualize Your Success
Who would have thought that visualizing your success can be a bad thing? After all, “visualize your success” is the first advice in all popular psychology books. But, this research has shown exactly that – apparently, positive visualization of your success can drain the energy out of your ambition, actually making you less likely to succeed. Huh.
Including some, or all of these time management tips into your daily routines can significantly streamline your website design workflow and free up some of your time for leisure or if you really want that, some more work.
Guest Bloggers Bio:
Marko Maric is a marketer specialized in search engine optimization and with some web design experience. He also blogs frequently about business, marketing, and productivity topics. Marko works at Clockify – a free time tracker and timesheet.