Start your own project: How to get more out of your time

Some freelancers are completely absorbed in their work. They are full-blooded freelancers and as such always on duty for their clients. Others keep their eyes open for alternatives. They fill their time with activities beyond their core business, e.g. to gain new experiences or to build up a second leg. What possibilities are there? We’ll give you a few suggestions.

What you can do:

Start your own blog

A blog can be tremendously important for your self-marketing. It allows you to publish news about your services quickly and easily. It helps build customer loyalty when you fill your blog with valuable tips that your customers can work with. And if you blog regularly, it helps you get found online more easily. Some freelancers are found so well through their blog that you can completely avoid cold calling.

One easy way to start your own blog is with WordPress: sign up, secure a free WordPress domain, and start blogging!

Write short stories or a novel

It’s not that difficult to publish your own book these days. You don’t even need a publisher anymore, you can do it completely self-published. The whole thing is called “self-publishing”. Numerous providers are now on the market, which publish texts from unknown authors either as an eBook or in printed form.

Thanks to the “Print on Demand” process, this is also possible in small editions: the book is only printed when an order for it has been received. Well, do you like writing? Then maybe this is the right project for you to tackle this summer.

Refurnish your apartment

A change of scenery is good for you – and not just in the proverbial sense. Give your apartment a new coat of paint, buy new furniture or replace your old dishes with new ones. This will bring fresh impetus into your everyday life. Use your free time in the summer to get quotes and go bargain hunting. New decor doesn’t have to cost a lot of money.

It is important that you feel really comfortable where you live. Then you can start the next project with new energy.

Redesign your garden

A beautiful garden is wonderful and can have an extremely positive effect on your mood. Get some new flowers, maybe a small fruit tree or plant some vegetables that you will harvest over time. If you’re handy, build yourself a nice bench or create a pond. There are so many possibilities! Walk through home improvement stores or around the neighborhood and get inspired by others’ ideas.

Turn old things into new

Have you ever heard of “upcycling”? It’s the process of turning waste products that would normally be thrown away into new products. Tetrapak beverage cartons can be turned into carrier bags, for example, or an old piece of escalator can be turned into a bench. There are almost no limits to the imagination.

Everything that is created through upcycling is very individual, creative and environmentally friendly, because the waste products do not have to be burned. Tip: Small upcycling products also make great gifts for friends and family.

Open an online shop

This is not as far-fetched as it might sound. Technically and financially, opening an online shop today is no longer a problem: there are enough providers who offer very affordable solutions, and they are not bad at all.

The real question is: what to sell? Not every freelancer makes products in their work that can and may be sold – either because the client owns all the rights to them, or because there is simply no market for them. On top of that: product manufacturing often makes extra work, which is additional to the freelance work.

You can find an example of such a product in the following expert interview.

Walk the Way of St. James

The Way of St. James is a network of pilgrimage routes that lead to Santiago de Compostela in Spain. Many people have walked it and report that it is an incredible experience. People from all over the world meet on the Way of St. James.

Some go it to find themselves, others out of humility because they have overcome a serious life crisis. For others, it is a great adventure that they want to do once in their life. Maybe for you too?

Take a trip around the world

It is the dream of many people to travel once around the world. Only a few can fulfill this dream. Those who do dare to do so often return a little changed, because the many impressions and experiences at the various stops around the globe make you see life through different eyes: “Actually, I’m doing very well.

Why do I complain so much?” or “When I get back, I rid myself of everything that causes unnecessary stress” are some of the insights globetrotters have on their travels. There’s always a reason not to take a big trip. But there’s also always a reason to do it anyway. Consider.

Expert Interview

Daniel Wagner is a freelance social media and community manager.

But because that wasn’t enough for him, he sat down and developed his own products: Social Media Starter Boxes for small companies and freelancers. How did you get the idea to develop the Social Media Starter Boxes alongside your freelance work?
Daniel Wagner:

I love working for small companies, one-man businesses and freelancers. But I soon realized that this client base often cannot afford personal consulting over a longer period of time. Especially in the social media environment this is important, because a lot of things change quickly and you should always stay on the ball.
should always be on the ball.

As a result, I set out to find a solution that would both teach social media know-how and provide the service of having someone to contact with social media questions. For three years, I honed the idea. What finally came out was the Social Media Starter Box, which will soon be available for purchase for various industries and social networks. The first Starter Box, which will be available from mid-August, is dedicated to the use of Twitter specifically for coaches and trainers.

I call this project “Little Big Social” because even small companies and lone wolves can be very successful with social media. Or to put it another way: They can turn their business into a “Little Big Social Company”. The Starter Box shows them how it’s done.

Please allow us a little preview: How do you turn your business into a Little Big Social Company?
Basically, there are three areas that matter: Social, Content and Reach. Social means knowing how to connect and grow your network on social networks. Content is about developing interesting content for social media that gets you noticed. Reach includes all measures to increase the reach in the social networks so that the content spreads further.

The Social Media Starter Box provides concrete instructions, tips and ideas on how best to proceed in all three areas in your industry. And should there be a hitch, the support team will help you quickly and easily. Good support is very, very important to me for this project.

What does this project mean to you, which you obviously managed all by yourself?
It was very important to me to build up a second mainstay in addition to my freelance work. That is one point. The other is that I hope to be able to provide a real service to small companies and freelancers with this product. I hope that with the Starter Box even those companies can have a great and safe start with social media that actually can’t afford external support. That would be great. And the first feedback from test persons who were allowed to work with the box in advance also makes me feel positive.

Time is a scarce commodity. How do you manage all your projects?
I mainly work from my home office. I’m very efficient there and can complete many tasks quickly. In addition, I set clear priorities. I sometimes turn down customer projects that I could fit in around my schedule, but would have to pause the further development of the Social Media Starter Boxes. My own project has absolute priority. I am a complete entrepreneur.

It is your turn!

We are very interested in what projects you invest your time in. Why don’t you briefly introduce them to us?