The Alchemist's Lair
Thoughts on writing, language, life as a freelancer,
and what comes to mind.
and what comes to mind.
After a forced break, and a huge scare, I'm finally back with news and thoughts from the MTM Translations' side of life.
The social detox turned out to be exactly what I needed. Reducing "background noise" helped me manage my heavy-duty workload more easily - but that's not the main benefit of taking a holiday from your online life.
The "social diet" brought back some simplicity to my daily routines. It gave me more time to focus on the people and things that matter the most - in business and life.
Silence is a precious asset both business-wise and beyond. It helps you bring back clarity and focus, and puts you back on track when your world spins too fast.
What's in store for you
Taking time off social media doesn't mean you get to forget "your people".
Here's what I prepared for you over my detox month:
A sneak peek at 2017
November was also a good time to finalise my speaking & training plans for early 2017.
Here's a little something about what's coming up.
On February 4th I'm presenting a transcreation workshop in Leiden (NL). It's a specialised session about the adaptation of slogans, payoffs and other creativity-infused short copy elements. If you're up for an interactive, practice-packed workshop, register now.
There's also a free webinar coming up in March. It's about managing your finances and cash flow as a freelancer - and it's organised with UTIC (Ukranian Translation Industry Conference). More about this soon!
Over to you
Did you ever put your online life on hold? What worked well for you, and what you'd do differently? Let me know what you think!
Turns out that my social detox month is going to be a few days longer, due to some badly-timed eyesight problems.
The situation is slowly getting back to normal now, so I'll be back on Wednesday, December 7th, and tell you what's coming up on the blog ... and maybe even about a nice Christmas surprise for you!
And now for a nice, theme-appropriate song, courtesy of Cat Stevens.
See you soon!
November is my social detox month. I turn off all social channels, and the blogs.
And you know what? Reducing information overload is pure bliss for creativity.
We live in the era of content consumption - and when we create content, we are influenced by what we read, saw or heard. If you consume hundreds of blog posts and discussions a week, making room for your own voice and thoughts is tricky.
So here's my tip for you: embrace silence.
Whether it's a month-long stop or a 30-min daily break, take some time to unwind.
Stop trying to keep up with the constant buzz and content streams around, and focus on your own goals and desires.
Let your own ideas breathe and flow.
So you’re launching your freelance business soon, uh? Congratulations!
I still remember the feeling. A mix of motivation, anxiety, excitement. Oh, and questions. Tons of questions that keep you up at night.
Looking back, I know my younger self was craving for practical advice on how to manage her newly found freedom … but blogs, LinkedIn groups and the like were yet to come.
So here is my “top 5” for you: down-to-earth tips that will help you grow your solo business whilst keeping your sanity. To your success!
#1 Develop routines
In freelancing, success starts with a good load of discipline and consistency. Routines help you manage your workload more efficiently. Also, they are great for keeping on top of tasks you’d rather avoid (paperwork, anyone?).
#2 Mind your bookkeeping
Want to get paid on time and enjoy a healthy cash flow? Invoice consistently, and follow-up on pending payments.
New to invoicing? Check out this free invoice template generator by Invoice2go.
#3 Forget multitasking
Multitasking is bad for productivity, and increases the chances of distraction-induced mistakes. Focus on one task at a time, and you’ll get more work done.
#4 Engage in real-life conversations
Don’t forget the power of in-person networking for freelancers. You never know where your next customer or business partner might come from.
If you’re the shy type, participating in leisure-oriented groups can make it easier for you to "get out there" and mingle with other people. To check for interesting activities in your area, try Meetup.
#5 Make time for your own projects
Want to write a book, create a promotional video, restyle your website? Treat your project like a customer’s. Set a deadline, “block” time slots in your weekly planning, then stick to the plan – no excuses.
Time to let the cat out of the bag: 21 Free Tools for Translators goes live on Sep 29th!
I'm closing the notification signup on Sep 28th at 4pm (CEST), so make sure to drop your email address to get a short message when the eBook is available for download.
Working on the second edition of the eBook has been exciting.
The tools' selection has been refreshed to bring you the most powerful free tools currently available - selected amongst 70+ potential candidates.
Wondering what's inside? A nice selection of free tools and apps to manage translation projects and administration tasks at ease. In the Grab Bag section, you will also find valuable little helpers that help you keep up with time-consuming tasks and everyday nuisances.
Plus quick access to help guides, useful articles, exclusive tutorials and cheat sheets to help you get started quickly, and work more effectively from day 1.
Now that 21 Free Tools for Translators is ready to go, it's your turn.
See you on the other side?