Glasgow Creative Clinics

Learn to manage your time

Starting a new business when you are still studying or have another job can be challenging. Learning how to manage your time will ensure no priorities are missed.

Planning and scheduling

Set clear goals, prioritise and schedule tasks

Defining your long-term and short-term goals for your creative business will help you stay focused and organised.

Break down your goals into actionable steps and organise them by priority.

Give yourself some deadlines for your goals and tasks to create a sense of urgency and accountability.

Now that you know what you have to do and when it needs to be done, you can use tools like planners, calendars, and project management apps to keep you organised day to day. Try out a few options to see what works for you.

Time blocking

Allocate specific time blocks for different activities such as research, designing, marketing, and administrative tasks. This technique can help you concentrate on one task at a time and avoid multitasking, leading to higher-quality work and faster task completion.

Areas of your business, such as marketing and professional development, need daily or weekly input. Giving them a regular block in your schedule will help you maintain momentum in those areas.

Staying focused and motivated

Share the load

Sometimes, the list of tasks can feel overwhelming. If you can, delegate tasks that can be outsourced to other freelancers or businesses. This will free up your time to focus on high-priority tasks that require your expertise.

If outsourcing seems financially out of reach, it may be possible to do a skills swap instead. No money changes hands; you exchange time with someone who has the skills you need and needs the skills you have. Think about the people in your network who might have the skills you need and might be interested in swapping with you.

Limit distractions

Identify common distractions in your work environment and take steps to minimise them. Here are some examples that might help:

  • Turn off notifications
  • Check email at specific times of the day rather than every 10 minutes
  • Set specific work hours, getting your brain used to focusing at a specific time
  • Create a clutter-free designated workspace
  • Find background music that gets you in the zone
  • Or, if you prefer silence, get some noise-cancelling headphones.

Take breaks

Remember to schedule regular breaks throughout your workday to rest and recharge. Taking breaks can help improve your focus, creativity, and overall productivity.

Before starting your first task after a break, take a few deep breaths. This can help you feel grounded and focused.

Keep learning

Investing time in honing your craft is vital to remain competitive in the creative industry. Dedicate time to practising and perfecting your skills by attending workshops, taking online courses, or collaborating with other professionals in your field. Additionally, it is essential to stay informed about the latest industry developments, such as emerging technologies, marketing strategies, and consumer trends. 

Keep expanding your skillset. Over time, it will improve the quality of your work and increase your value as a creative professional.


Remember that time management is a skill that takes practice and experimentation to master. Be willing to adjust your time management strategies based on what works best for you and your creative business.