Clutter can clog up our busy lives. If you’re like me, clutter sneaks up on you pretty fast. One day everything is organized and the next your desk has that half-full bottle of water, notebooks from your last voiceover event that you want to comb through, and various business cards on it while your computer has an inbox full of emails. It’s OK, this happens to everyone, and it’s important to not only deal with this physical and digital clutter but also pay attention to what might be cluttering your daily schedule. While you focus on that pile of papers, you should also examine how your time is spent and make changes so you can make sure you’re working efficiently.
Getting organized and decluttering in these ways can help you feel focused and rejuvenated in your voiceover work. Set aside some time soon to do the following.
1. Declutter your desk.
Can’t see the top of your desk? Start by removing everything other than your computer setup. Dust your desk, clean your monitor, and arrange your cords. Only put the items that you use on a daily basis back on your desk. Do you really need all 30 pens? Anything that you’re working on this week can also find its place in a designated area so that it’s easy to find. Everything else gets filed, not piled. Use small boxes for pens, clips, rubber bands, business cards, and whatever else you have left.
2. Clean your office.
Now that your desk is a cleaner and happier place, it’s time to look around the room. Do you have piles of this and that lying around? How about that project that you started and never finished? Old boxes or filing piled high? What about all of those old scripts you’ll never need again? Organize, file, purge, and replace. Set time aside once a week to do your general filing and tidying up, and make the shredder your best friend. You’ll be amazed how much non-work stuff winds up hanging out in your office space.
3. Delete those unnecessary emails and computer files.
Hi, my name is Rhonda and I’m an email hoarder. There, I said it. Are you the same way? The mighty delete key holds all of the power. Archive the important stuff and get rid of the rest! Don’t shy away from unsubscribing to some emails too. If it isn’t useful for you, remove it from your tech life. Take a few minutes at the end of each day to tidy up your inbox.
Your computer also needs to be cleaned up now and then. Do you have files from years past just hanging out sucking up your memory? Is your desktop so cluttered that you can’t find the files you’re looking for? Is your download file filled with hundreds of random things? Archive. Save. Delete, delete, delete.
4. Use available apps wisely.
I love technology! It helps to keep the clutter down as well as stay organized. There are apps galore out there to help you and your team keep track of everything you need and stay connected. Try options like Trello, Asana, and Google Docs, and explore what’s available that would work best for your voiceover business.
5. Work in smaller chunks.
There is only one of you. If you’re feeling overwhelmed with everything your business requires of you on a daily basis, it’s time to start taking smaller bites. When you’re sitting down to do business chores, divide your time into 15–20 minute chunks. For me, doing things like bookkeeping isn’t much fun, but knowing I only have to do it for 15 minutes twice a day makes it much less traumatic. Take short breaks throughout the day as well.
6. Be conscious of your time on social media.
Social media is a very important part of your daily marketing plan. But marketing and socializing are two different things. One minute you’re checking your Facebook feed and the next you’re watching cute cat videos or chatting with a long lost high school friend. Where does the day go, you wonder? We all have a love-hate relationship with social media. If you’re serious about your voiceover career, you’ll save the chats, videos, and general online noise for early morning, lunch hours, or after the work day is complete.
7. Get some fresh air.
The weather doesn’t stop me from getting some fresh air. If you don’t have time for a short walk, just step outside for a quick break. Play with your dog or cat. Open a window. Stretch. Give your body and your brain a quick fresh air break. You’ll be able to focus better on work once you do!
8. Meet fellow voiceover professionals.
From local meetup groups to conventions, there are many ways to stay connected with other voiceover professionals. Some are face-to-face and some are online. These types of groups can help you stay connected to the pulse of what is happening in your professional world as well as help you forge new friendships. These relationships can give you ideas on what you can do differently in your workflow to help your career. Meeting with other pros once in a while will change the way you do business.
As you’re doing these things, think back to the excitement you felt when you first began your voiceover career. Remember when you announced your website to the world? How about when you shared your first professional demo? Get back to that person and get excited about your business. After all, you’ve worked hard to make it successful so don’t let some clutter get in your way!
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The views expressed in this article are solely that of the individual(s) providing them,
and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Backstage or its staff.