For the past seven years I’ve been building my portfolio of content creation through blogging, writing books and developing recipes which has evolved into the start-up of two very distinct businesses:
The first, includes this very website Liz Creates, offering my professional content creation services and consultancy, and the second, named Ethical Eats, which I’ve devised to promote eating both ethically and for wellbeing.
For the majority of my time in self-employment I’ve worked from home. Initially it was the idyllic scenario most office workers imagine. My routine often involved working in my pyjamas, my favourite coffee cup in hand. I had no commute, no set hours and no restraints. The world was my oyster!
I kept to a fairly rigid regime with lists and calendars all doing their part to keep me on track, my workload steadily increasing. However over time my productivity dwindled. Household chores, family and social media became easy distractions and my working days got longer to accommodate my many breaks, which were used to complete non-work tasks.
I loved my work but I felt detached from the real business world and simply lacked motivation.
I had seen friends in similar situations go it alone, but they were happily growing their businesses and I felt like I was standing still.
So I asked myself, “What can I do to be more productive?”
I decided a change of location could be the solution and so late last year I took the plunge and started to look at alternative work locations suitable for freelancers such as renting offices, hot-desking and internet cafés.
Renting an office seemed like the perfect choice. It was a professional local space, plus offered the opportunity to get out of the house and to create a home/work divide. But as any self-starter will know, office overheads are extremely costly and the rates were way out of my league.
Also office working reminded me too much of working from home. Yes it would provide a potential space for meetings with clients and no distractions, but I’d still be sat in a room all day with barely any contact from the outside world. I needed to find a community!
Next up was working in a local coffee shop. I settled down with my notebooks, pens and a slice of cake and then, after realising I had no room to put my coffee down without elbowing something else fairly vital onto the floor, set to work.