Every Day I’m Hustlin': Survival Essentials

You’re mocking up wireframes, meeting with investors, getting into the weeds of branding and oh, yeah – gotta feed the dog. Maybe Beyonce’s bound by 24-hour days too, but – no disrespect to Queen Bey – she’s also got a whole team on her side, and right now, you’ve only got yourself. No matter your craft, you’re bootstrapping and testing your mettle (not to mention financial savvy) at every turn, so you’re all ears when it comes to survival tips and productivity hacks. Here are some essential tips to lock down as you carve out your niche in the world of startups.

NOTIFICATION NINJA

This might sound counterintuitive, but switching off will keep you on track. When it seems like a million and one tasks are each more pressing than the last, de-cluttering your screens will help you tap into the laser focus you need. If you’re working with a Mac, try WriteRoom – it’ll block out notifications, allowing you to power through on the task at hand.

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GET TO KNOW YOUR GADGETS

Portable chargers. When you’re constantly on the run between home, meetings, workspaces and studios, you won’t always find yourself next to a power socket. Here’s the answer.

Juiceboxx. For Mac users constantly up in arms about the fraying charging cords, Juiceboxx has your back. This little number hugs the body of your charger so the cord never bends at more than 90 degrees. YAS.

Speed up your morning coffee. If you’re a slave to the caffeine, this’ll reset your body clock from the second you wake up. You’ll be mainlining the good stuff, stat.

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DELEGATE, DAMNIT

Yes – letting go of your baby is hard. However, there are invaluable resources out there – not least, freelancers who can jump on board and help you out as needed. Fiverr connects you with creative for graphic/logo design, copywriting and editing, and more for around five bones a task. There’s also 99 designs, where you can find designers for a few hundred bucks – a relatively inexpensive investment when you need a professional to take a mantle on key projects.

SET ASIDE TIME FOR YOURSELF

If the months are stretching into uninterrupted years, consider seizing a couple of weeks for snorkeling in the Caribbean or hiking the Adirondacks. You’ll be refreshed, inspired and invigorated – and ready to dive right back into work with a fresh perspective.

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  • tayox

    Please take this in the kindest spirit, but for a site dedicated to helping and supporting creative individuals find time to make great products, promoting things like Fiverr & 99Designs which essentially undermine freelance graphic designers in favor of crowd sourcing a (generally) less focused/quality product, seems counter intuitive. It seems akin to a graphic design blog promoting some fly by night t-shirt print shop or low-quality leather goods producer.

    I get that it will save time, but it seems like design might be something where you might invest some time.

    #twoCents