Getting more organized shouldn’t only be a priority at New Year’s or in the springtime. Now is the time to keep your documents in better check using these tips. If you utilize these properly, staying organized as a freelancer will never be easier. 

1. Keep your work in one spot that you can access from anywhere

When I first started out as a freelance writer, I felt a bit scattered. If ideas came to mind, I would randomly write them on pieces of scrap paper or jot them down on the notes section of my phone. While it was great to capture these thoughts in the moment, I didn’t have a system of finding those ideas when I needed them. Storing everything in one place is key even if you just write down ideas, phrases or a few sentences. If your thoughts flow better by manually writing with pen and paper, stick with that and use one notebook so the papers stay put. You can type them into a document later. If you type directly into a document from the beginning, keep it in one place using Google Docs. You will be able to access it wherever you are if you have the app on your phone.

 

2. Have a system for labeling documents

Whether you use folders or not in the documents, you can save time finding what you need by using the title of the document to your advantage. I type the name of the website I’m writing for into the title and then type the title of the article. So the document for this article is “Due Secrets to Staying Organized as a Freelancer Using Google Docs”. It’s an informal way to create a “tag” for my Due articles. This way I can more readily find the article I need to post. It cuts down on the time I spend looking for it and I can filter out other articles for different websites I write for. This keeps me organized and allows me to follow a streamlined process for publishing my content. So if you’re not a writer, you can use this same idea for information you store for a certain project. You can even put your client’s name in the title to help you more readily access documents when you’re working with them.

 

3. Have a clean up routine

While sometimes it’s easier to leave certain things out when we’re done working, try to put things back where they go so you can readily find them again. You can more readily find what you need when you start working again. This also goes for the documents you’re working on as well. Close the tabs on your computer when you’re done working. Google Docs give you the option to create an outline. If you have been typing away and you want to pick up where you left off, write down where you want to continue by naming the section and quickly skipping to it with the outline. Consider jotting down where you left off on your to do list.  You won’t have to scroll down through every page to jog your memory as to where you left off. You can even change the text to a different color before closing the tab as a placeholder. This is especially helpful if you were working in the middle of a section.

 

The Bottom Line

Use the tips mentioned to stay organized and perhaps save  time while working with Google Docs. Finding a streamlined way to work can make all the difference in getting things done quickly.

 

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Karen is a Nationally Syndicated Personal Finance Writer who sharpens her skills at US News Money. You can also find her placing clients on podcasts and reading about home office organization, productivity and habits.

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