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How to Incredibly Maintain a Healthy Work-Life Balance as a Freelancer

How to Incredibly Maintain a Healthy Work-Life Balance as a Freelancer

Whether you work from home, or you have a 9-5 job, we all face the same challenge; how to take care of a healthy work-life balance. Do you feel like you’re spending so much time on work, and you have no family time, or you’re so much stressed with housework that you slack on the job? Well, you’re not alone! We all face this challenge on a daily basis, and we wonder how to balance out our lives. It’s hard, and I also face the same challenge.

But luckily there are steps that we can take to get things right on the track. I have found the following ways to be effective in creating a healthy work-life balance as a freelancer, and they’ve helped me a lot. You have even possible have heard some of them, but we sometimes need a nudge to get back on track

Below are square measure ways in which to take care of the balance.

1) Have a routine and stick with it.

Routine is extremely necessary, and beginning your day in an identical manner every day goes a long way. This might involve; rising up at a designated time, having your breakfast, reading your mail, catching up with your favorite journal. Whatever feels smart to you and eases you into the day. One among the foremost necessary steps therein routine is getting dressed.

2) Set work hours and focus.

This may fluctuate day to day, however, the necessary factor is to stick to a schedule and achieve the maximum you can. It’s straightforward to merely keep working because of convenient — don’t do this. Unless you’re on a point in time, and you have to work late, begin and finish your workday on the set hours. It would even be nice to begin your day at 7:00 AM and end it at 5:00 PM and stay focused on your work.

3) Take breaks throughout the day.

This applies to everybody within the force nowadays. We have a tendency to tend to stay committed to what we do or do throughout the day, and we fully forget we require breaks. Taking fast breaks throughout the day permits your mind to reset. Breaks are a good time to assume through a haul if you’re stuck, or get your ideas flowing if you experience mental block.

4) Create a Working Space.

If you work from home, you will probably notice that you like to move around with your laptop as you try to look for a comfortable spot to work, and this becomes hectic because of distractions. Well, you can designate one area as your working space/office, this can be in your bedroom or sitting room, and then make it yours. You can set up your desk, a comfortable office chair, computer, and office supplies.

You can decorate your office with your family photos, motivational quotes and also some desk flowers to keep your home office lively and organized.

5) Turn off When your Day Ends.

Many freelancers don’t turn off at the end of the day, and you’ll find that we like to overwork ourselves until midnight or even past midnight, by this you get serious burnout, and you have no energy to wake up the following day to work.

Remember how we talked about setting working hours on point #2? Well, it’s also important to know when to call it off at the end of the day. If your day ends at 5:00 PM, you should be able to log off your computer, turn it off and wind down your work day and leave your work until tomorrow. By this, you should be able to turn your brain from work mode to home mode.

6) Minimize Distractions.

When you’re working from home you’ll notice that you will get distracted very fast by dirty dishes, laundry pilling/dusty carpet, TV and radio, social media, the list is endless. It’s very hard to focus on work when working from home because you see a lot of stuff around you, and it’s another story, distraction is real.

My suggestion would be your work from the designated work-space, that we had discussed earlier on point #4. Keep your work-space from distractions as much as possible, if you want to get settled at once, you can take care of those distractions before you start working or set some time during the day to handle them.

Maybe do the dishes in your ten-minute break, or do the laundry during your lunchtime break. Just schedule it into your day like you would do with a meeting, and it will feel less like a house chore and more like another work-related task that needed to be done.

Social media: We get distracted very fast by social media platforms, and we’re tempted to continue chatting with friends, and we may forget about work. This is a serious distraction, but don’t worry, you can manage the situation by;

  • Deleting unnecessary Apps on your phone.
  • Turning off the Internet.
  • Scheduling your posts with SocialPilot which can post them for you later automatically.
  • Limiting the time you spend on certain websites.

7) Set Boundaries With Family, Friends, and Neighbors.

Have you noticed that because you work from home, most of your family, friends and neighbors think that you’re always free to chat, or they can drop at your house any time? Well, it’s a huge misconception.

You have a real job like anyone else in a normal office, remember you’ve set your work hours and by all means, you need to stick to those hours. You’re not available to impromptu visits just because your office happens to be in your house. Not only that, but you don’t need to put a padlock while still inside your house in order to put off distractions you can’t be a prisoner in your own house — just set boundaries.

It’s important to have your family, neighbors, and friends on board with your expectations from the beginning, and the best way to do it is by communication, but do it politely. Let them know you work from home, and you have a schedule and deadlines to meet. It doesn’t mean that you can’t help someone out, but let them also communicate it to you in advance.

Lastly,

8) Take Good Care of Yourself.

Our health is our greatest wealth and when you’re working from home you should make it a point of taking good care of yourself.  Remember we had talked about taking breaks throughout the day on point #3? Now let’s elaborate that on taking good care of yourself — mind, soul, and body.

  • Take plenty of water and eat healthy foods.

You can buy a water bottle and fill it with water that you need to take during the day and keep in on your workstation to make sure that you’re taking enough water as you work during the day to stay hydrated. Water does wonders for positive moods and improves concentration.

Also, don’t forget to eat. Sometimes you will find that we get so engaged with our work that we forget that we’re supposed to eat, and we only find ourselves taking snacks which are not good for our health. It’s good to set time aside to prepare a healthy meal.

  • Make sure you’re taking care of your inner self, when working from home you can take a break for meditation, yoga, prayers or deep breathing.
  • Exercises. Trying doing some workouts before you start working, if you don’t have a workout you can try simple stretching exercises, you can stretch your neck, roll your shoulders, sit-ups, shake your legs and arms — any exercise is better than no exercise at all.

Even though getting equilibrium on work-life balance is not an easy task, it’s also critical to your success as a freelancer. This list might not be a comprehensive one, but at least it’s a great start for those looking for ways to balance work-life and still maintain harmony in their lives.

You can add more on the comments’ section so that I can also learn from you.

 

You can always enroll for our online courses when you’re ready!

 

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9 Transcription Software To Increase Productivity

9 Transcription Software To Increase Productivity

Transcription software maximizes your work productivity, and this makes freelance transcription an exciting career. You will come across all types of files, from court recordings, medical dictations, interviews, webinars, church sermons, but without the right software, you will find that the task becomes tedious.

Now, let’s look at 9 Transcription Software that will increase your productivity. Also, note that most of these softwares are free to download online.

1. Speech-To-Text Software

You will find that they’re many speech to text software online Apps, some will give you a trial version and then after that, you should purchase for you to continue enjoying their services.

Their software will require you to sign up with your email address. After that you can upload an audio file, then after the upload is successful, wait for some minutes depending on the length of your file. They will then notify you via email once your machine transcript is ready. You can then copy your transcript to your Express Scribe for editing.

Also, note that the automated transcript is machine generated and the accuracy of the file will vary from 50-80% depending upon the audio quality and also the accent of the speakers. US English has a better output, while non-native speakers may not be recognized by the software.

Make sure that you have gone through your work thoroughly because machine transcription is not perfect, look for;

  • Mishears.
  • Typos
  • Missing words.
  • Wrong paragraph breaks.
  • Incorrect capitalization for words.
  • Missing punctuation.

You can use the following online Apps.

These Apps will provide you with free machine generated transcripts so as to improve your efficiency and productivity.

2. Express Scribe

Express Scribe is the most recommended transcription software. It has a free version and a pro version, which is paid and comes with more features compared to the free version.

It’s an audio player specifically manufactured for transcribers. You can be able to control it with Hotkeys on your keyboard, even when typing in MS Word. The Hotkeys are set on f1-f9 keys on your keyboard.

Express Scribe automatically saves your work, so no need to worry about losing your work. You can also reduce background noise, boost the audio volume, minimize the speaker’s speed, and adjust the audio volume.

There’s also InqScribe transcription software and FTW if you want to check more options.

3. Online Audio Converter

Sometimes you will find that the file format that you have is not accepted by the Express Scribe or InqScribe, so the best thing to do is use the Online Audio Converter to convert your file to an MP3 file.

You will upload your file online, then click on convert audio to the format that you want. Note that there are so many file formats, but you can always convert them to MP3 format, which is acceptable by all transcription software.

I opted for the Online Audio Converter after realizing that many offline Apps will only give you a limited amount of minutes for you to purchase from them to continue enjoying their services. Then the only drawback that comes with the Online Audio Converter is that it will come with a.onlineaudioconverter extension, otherwise, it’s faster than most offline Apps.

You can check it here >>> https://online-audio-converter.com/

4. WavePad Sound Editor

You will find that most audio files come with background noise, and you might wonder what to do. Wow, I have good news for you.

You need to download WavePad Sound Editor from NCH. This software clears background noise for you and the file becomes clear and manageable. No need to worry, it’s not complicated to use.

Just load your file, then click on Effects >> Clean Up >> Noise Reduction >> Auto Spectrum Subtraction.

The software will perform a special audio process to remove the noise, and then you can save your edited audio file. Then you can load it on your transcription software Express Scribe to work on it. It’s as simple as 1, 2, 3.

5. DFX Sound Enhancer

This is a sound enhancer or amplifier, once you feel that the audio file is not audible you can amplify the sound by just putting the DFX Sound Enhancer on. It’s simple to use because it only comes with an off and on button.

Otherwise, you can also adjust the audio between different controls. DFX also reduces the background noise of the file, and you will enjoy working on a crystal clear audio.

6. Internet Download Manager (IDM)

This is a great software and also a lifesaver when downloading large files. It slices the download and this makes the download faster and then after it’s done it puts them together.

In case you encounter a network failure, IDM is able to resume the download without hitches, so it saves you time.

You can also be able to download audio/video files on the web pages that you visit, as IDM prompts you to download from the page.

So, when you receive large files from your client, don’t worry, downloading with IDM is a walk in the park.

You can download a free 30-day trial for you to test how good IDM is. Then, after that, you can decide whether it’s worth the purchase.

7. WinZip

This is a small software but very powerful for unzipping files. So, it’s a must-have software on your computer. The software is used to compress files, for example, you can put 6 Mp3 files into a folder, then use WinZip to compress them and put them in one folder.

So, when you receive zipped files from your client, you will need WinZip to unzip the files, then you can download them one by one.

8. Grammarly

Grammarly is the best grammar checker that there’s currently. You can use it to detect grammar errors on your transcripts.

You can either add it as an MS Word plug-in or you can add it to your Chrome browser as an extension. Grammarly will always highlight your errors in red, and it will suggest for you how to correct it, but note that if the speaker was speaking broken English, while transcribing you should ignore such corrections.

Always remember that good command of English grammar is mandatory when working online, so your English skills should be top-notch and that’s where Grammarly comes in handy.

You can sign up here >>> https://app.grammarly.com/

9. WavePad Audio File Splitter

Lastly, we have WavePad Audio Splitter.

Once in a while, you might find that you have a large audio/video file that you want to split in order to assign your team members some minutes. It’s easier to split the file and then assign it rather than sending a transcriber the whole file and then tell them to work on a small portion of the file.

I have good news for you, with WavePad Audio File Splitter, this is possible.

WavePad Audio File Splitter is software that’s designed to split audio files into small portions. This is an easy mp3 splitter software that can also detect the specified amount of silence and split the file at these points.

It’s very easy to use, and it will allow you to split WAV files, mp3 and other audio files within minutes to create the sizes that you want.

It has three basic operations:

  • Slice into how many files (Slice one 20 MB mp3 file into two 10 MB files).
  • Slice files of X duration, where each file has HH:MM:SS (Split one 20 minute audio file into two 10 minutes audio files).
  • Slice into individual audios using silence detection.

You can download the free software here and also note it’s for non-commercial use only >>> https://www.nch.com.au/wavepad/wpsetup.exe

Parting Shot

Freelance transcription is a great career like any other, and you will need the right transcription software to increase your productivity. Just the way a farmer uses his tools wisely in a farm in order to have a bountiful harvest, that’s just how every transcriber should use the right software to increase their output to deliver high-quality transcripts.

You can always enroll for our online courses on; transcription, video captioning and virtual assistant when you’re ready!

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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zq6YkX9DkUo

Check out our courses here