Let's organize our lives right now. Let's get it together and finally come up with a plan to make things easier. If you're like me, you're bordering between being a total disaster and having it together on a daily basis. Wait, you're not? Am I the only one?
I used to wonder how everyone looked so pulled together when I felt like I was a total scatterbrained disaster!
Ever since I started freelancing full time, I've been on a warpath to organize my life the best I can.
Not only have I gotten more organized, but in the process I have been able to streamline my day and become more efficient.
It's amazing how much time I can waste looking for things, whether it's personal or business related.
By eliminating the clutter, I've been able to clear my mind and feel more refreshed to tackle my work and personal life.
How to organize your personal life
I've previously mentioned how useful Capital One 360 is for me. It has been so helpful, I actually closed my previous checking account I had at a big bank. I realized my big bank wasn't actually doing anything for me and Capital One 360 makes everything a breeze.
I've got my main checking account along with several different savings account. Each savings account is earning interest, there aren't any fees and there are ATM's all over the place incase you need to withdrawal cash. Using the app on my phone, I deposit all my checks, pay my Capital One credit card each month, and can send money to other people. It's a winner!
Have you checked your credit report and score lately? You should be monitoring it at least a couple times a year to make sure there aren't any mistakes on it. If you want to get a mortgage or a loan, you need to make sure your credit is in tip top shape!
Start saving, even if it’s only a few dollars a week
Whether you want to start an emergency fund or a vacation fund, you have to start setting some money aside. If you’re like most people and struggle with saving, you should consider using Digit.
I’ve just started using this free program and love it. Digit lets you save money each week from your checking account. What I really like about Digit is that it analyzes my bank account and determines how much I can really save per week. Some weeks it might be $5 and other times it might be $20. You don’t have to worry about overdraft and can contribute less or more if you need to.
As of now, I don’t know an easier way to save money! You can learn more about Digit here.
I used Unroll. Me to clean up all my email accounts. I'm tired of all the junk mail and end up deleting more emails than actually reading them. I used this free app to wipe out my inboxes so I only get the emails that matter. Less emails means more time to be doing other things.
Switch to paperless billing
Save the paper, cut down on the clutter and have all your bills sent to you via email. It's much easier to save bills as .pdf's in case you need to keep them. Plus it's a snap to do a search in your inbox than to find an old bill.
Use online storage for files and photos
I recently went through over 7,000 photos I had saved on my laptop. That's crazy! I deleted the ones I no longer wanted and then transferred them over to my dropbox. Now I have more room on my laptop and these pictures are stored safely online incase something happens to my computer.
Rely on a scanner
Invest in a quality scanner and upload all your documents and paperwork in online storage. The NeatDesk scanner will scan up to 24 pages a minute and then automatically store your information in the cloud server of your choice, all without being attached to your computer.
Write it down
Passwords, addresses, documents should be kept in one place. Whether you use an online system or a notebook, create one place to keep track of everything.
Stop letting your cell phone run your life
Like most people, I am totally addicted to my cell phone. I have even found that I get less accomplished during the work day if I am constantly checking it. Instead of being alerted every time I get a new email or have a new message on Facebook, I silence all my apps. This helps me stay focused on the task in front of me.
Clean your car
I can always tell when my life gets too hectic because my SUV gets messy. I know it sounds ridiculous, but it's usually the sign I need that if my car is messy, other parts of my life probably are too. Whether you take your car to get detailed or like to clean it yourself, it's amazing how much better you feel once you are riding around in a clean vehicle.
How to organize your freelance or small business
I am finally happy with where I am when it comes to using the right financial and organizational tools. It took a lot of trial and error to figure out what works best for me and to figure out how to get the best system in place.
Re-label your online folders and files
There's nothing worse than going to look for something in one of your folders and not being able to remember where you stored a file. Take 15 minutes and clean up your folders. Rename them, delete ones you don't need and organize them better. I like to pretend that if someone has never seen my folders before, would they be able to find something?
Start that blog once and for all
If you've been eyeballing how pretty some blogs look and been lurking around, just start your own blog. It's pretty easy to do and fairly inexpensive.
If you are thinking about starting a blog, this tutorial will help you start a blog today. You’ll also get a FREE domain name for a year! I was able to quit my job and blog full time, all within my first year of blogging. I invested a small amount of money to start my blog using Bluehost, and I made $13,000 in 6 months of blogging. That’s the best return of investment ever!
Get a PayPal account
I have a PayPal business checking account. I use this account to receive payments for my freelancing business that is related to Believe In A Budget. I like this account because I earn 1% cash back on my purchases. While there aren't any fees to have this account, I do lose a small percentage when a client pays me. This account links to my business savings account when I need to transfer money.
Open a Capital One 360 savings account
Every time I receive a payment in my PayPal account, I transfer 30% over to my Capital One 360 savings account. This account is strictly for paying taxes and I like having a dedicated account for just this.
Invest in Freshbooks
If you are a freelancer or small business owner, consider switching to Freshbooks. Plans start at $9.95 a month and you can try them out for FREE for 30 days.
The biggest reason I like them is the savings you get over using PayPal. Every time you invoice a client with Freshbooks and your client pays with PayPal, you only pay a flat fee of fifty cents per transaction vs. 2.9% of the invoice amount. That's a huge savings! Click here to learn more about Freshbooks.
How to organize your side hustles
If your goal is to start making more money, it's time to start tracking your income better. If you are already side hustling, step up your game!
Take surveys to make cash back
Get organized and make extra money! One of the advantages when you learn how to organize your life is the potential to change things up!
Create a new email account just for taking surveys. This will really help you stay organized! I make several hundred dollars a year taking surveys from home and on my cell phone.
These are the top surveys I take:
Aside from being able to shop online, Swagbucks lets you watch videos that earn you points! These points can then be exchanged for gift cards and cash back. You can earn gift cards to places like Amazon, Target, Starbucks, Walmart – basically places you normally already shop at. You also get a $5 bonus when you sign up here!
This is similar to other survey sites – you earn points for taking surveys and then you redeem your points for a pre-paid Visa gift card or rewards. I like Pinecone because you get to give your opinion on products (and even test them out), so your input influences whether or not products hit the shelves. You can sign up here!
I've been using Harris Poll for over 5 years! You simply take surveys and get rewarded. It's one of the very first survey companies I started working with when I started side hustling! Click here to get started with Harris Poll!
These surveys are on current events, products, food, medicine, etc., and you can earn cash back or gift cards, like Amazon, PayPal and more. Sign up here to get started with Opinion Outpost.
This is one of my favorite survey companies. You answer really current questions related to the economy and you also get to see the results. You can cash out for a ton of different gift cards, like Visa, Walmart and more. Sign up here and receive 2,000 bonus points!
VIP Voice lets you earn rewards for completing surveys as well as writing in an online, virtual journal, which makes it different from other survey companies. Sign up here to get started with VIP Voice.
MyPoints is a long time favorite. Aside from using their website to shop online, you can earn a ton of reward points doing their surveys. I have been with MyPoints for ten years, that’s crazy.
I’ve earned a lot of points over the years, simply from taking surveys. I’ve been all about this side hustle for a long time, ha! If you want to sign up for MyPoints, you can even a cash bonus. Join MyPoints and earn a $10 cash reward!
Make free money with cash back and rebates
I've been using Ebates for a while now and have made over $700 back online. I get paid a percentage back of each purchase in cash and it's deposited into my PayPal account. Hello, free money! Join Ebates here!
Ibotta is another free cell phone app. You use it after you go grocery shopping and use your receipt. It's basically a rebate app, so you can earn anywhere from 50 cents to $5 off everything you buy.
My favorite part about this app is that it's not always brand specific, like a lot of coupons are. So you'll be able to scan “any brand of bread” for 50 cents off, etc. If you do coupon – you can STILL use Ibotta and get a rebate. For the diehard couponers out there, this will often result in getting an item for FREE. Crazy, right?
If you want to grab the Ibotta app and start making money off your grocery receipts, click here to get started. You will receive a cash bonus of $10 when you scan your first item!
Final tips on how to organize
Write down how you plan to hustle harder. Keep a list of all the companies or people you would like to reach out to to sell your services or sign up with. Add each name to your spreadsheet above. This will help you stay motivated and continue to expand your income.
Use a separate email and PayPal account for side hustles
Aside from my business email, I have a personal email and a side hustle email. I prefer to keep things separate and this system is really efficient. My side hustle email is dedicated to mystery shops, panel studies, rewards and cashback related emails. I also use my side hustle email for all my money making apps as well.
There is no better time than right now to get organized. Even if you can only complete one task at a time, you are already improving your life.