Freelancing

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5 Ways to Legitimately Start Making Money Online in Your Spare Time

Have you ever wanted to make money online but weren’t sure how to get started? The good news is that tons of people are already making money online and many of them have done this by turning their expertise, passion, or hobby into profits.

To help with this process, today I wanted to share a list of five great ways you can start making money online. Each method is unique in their own way but also generating millions of dollars in revenue daily for people around the world.

Start a Blog

start a blog

Blogging is one of the most popular ways to start a website or a place of your own on the internet. Ever since the creation of WordPress, it’s never been easier to get started with a website or blog without the need to know anything about web hosting, programming or even content creation.

Many blogs start out as hobbies or personal sites, then as their readership builds up, different forms of monetization and potential revenue come into play. To learn more about how to start a blog and even make some money in the process, be sure to check out this blogging resource guide.

See Also: 5 Simple Ways to Transform a Blog to a Money Making Machine

Freelance Writing

Many people are great at writing but never really get to put this to good use. At the same time, many people have a lot of free time during their day and could start making a few dollars in the process by completing articles for websites, marketing agencies and different brands around the world.

Through the use of sites like Fiverr, TextBroker, and iWriter, anyone can create an account, look up the latest article jobs, then complete them at their leisure or even create a new freelance writing business in the process.

See Also: How To Find Great Ideas For Writing A Story 

Create an Etsy Store

Creativity is something many people possess but it’s not something many people can successfully make money with. Thanks to sites like Etsy.com, anyone can create an online store of their own and start selling crafts, paper products, art work, t-shirts or anything else you can think of.

When starting an Etsy store, try to provide the highest quality products and build a brand around your business. The start-up costs for Etsy are quite minimal and many of their users are earning over five-figures per month selling through their site.

Affiliate Marketing

If you have a passion for business or know how to sell products, the world of affiliate marketing might just be what you were looking for. The concept of affiliate marketing is quite simple.

Many web sites and brands will pay out a commission to site owners and partners who promote their website. Every time a new customer or lead is referred, an affiliate would then receive a commission for the transaction that takes place.

Some of the many benefits of affiliate marketing include not needing to hold any inventory, never needing to handle a transaction and there is also unlimited earning potential.

Sell Stuff on Amazon and eBay

sell stuff on amazon

We all use sites like Amazon and eBay on a daily basis as a customer, but not enough of us are using these online stores to their full advantage. eBay is one of the best sites for selling junk or unwanted products you might currently have in your house. What many people don’t know is that Amazon has a program of their own for selling content through their site as well. This can be done with individual products, or even with bulk products that you might already create and sell elsewhere.

Now that you’ve seen some of the best ways to start making money online, it’s time for you to get in on the action. Each of the methods are unique in their own way, and can make more or less depending on the time, work and effort you put into them.

 

The post 5 Ways to Legitimately Start Making Money Online in Your Spare Time appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

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How To Avoid A Content Crisis When Your Deadline Is Looming

Have you ever found yourself in front of your computer just staring at your screen? Worse, your calendar is showing a looming deadline. It could be for a project or proposal at school, or it may be for a business brief or marketing plan at work. Whatever the situation is, you need to write, and you have to do it fast. There’s only one problem: your mind decides to go blank right when you need it the most.

How do you write with the speed of light without sacrificing the level of quality you produce? Here are few tricks and tools that will help you do that.

Tips for Avoiding a Content Crisis: How to Write Faster and Better at the Same Time

The key to writing fast is getting your mind to work faster. You cannot force yourself to write the content ASAP, but you can inspire yourself to do so. There’s a huge difference between pressure and inspiration, and you’ll understand it as soon as you start working on your self-confidence.

Here are few tips to help you with that:

Get ready before you start writing

prepare writing equipments

What do you need to finish this writing project?

  • Your laptop/desktop computer
  • Pen and paper for taking notes
  • Tons of research
  • A fresh cup of coffee

Take everything you need and organize your desk. Then, start the research process. You need enough facts and data from relevant sources to support your arguments. That’s the only way towards a believable piece of content.

The research process may take a significant portion of your time, but it’s worth it. Once you have the information you need, you’ll go through the writing stages with ease.

See Also: How to Organize Your Writing Workplace for Better Productivity

Don’t worry about making each sentence brilliant

When you try too hard to write perfect content, you block your ideas because you pay too much attention to every single sentence. Just let go! Set your ideas free. Try to connect them in a logical content flow and write away.

Remember all those grammar rules your English teachers taught you? You are already a natural so you don’t need to think about them as you write.

“Do I use passive in this sentence? Wait, I read an article that said passive was not okay. But it really works in this case. What do I do?” That’s the perfect recipe for getting stuck.

Many great writers will tell you they did their best work under pressuring deadlines. Why? – Because they didn’t think too much about polishing out the sentences.

Take some time to brainstorm and write as your ideas flow in your head. You’ll edit once you finish the first draft. That’s when you’re supposed to think about fixing the grammar and style.

Set expectations. Make them realistic!

How fast can you write? You can speed up the process, but you cannot go too far beyond your limits. You can’t write an entire Ph.D. dissertation in a day… that’s an unrealistic goal. Ask yourself these questions:

  • How many days or hours do you have before the deadline?
  • How much of that time can you devote to research and writing?
  • What daily tasks can you sacrifice for the sake of this project?

When you have the answers, make a plan. Organize your time in a way that helps you write as much content as possible within the limited time you have. When you have the progressive steps marked in your calendar, the goal will seem achievable, and you’ll relieve yourself from a huge load of stress.

Don’t skip the outline

It doesn’t matter how close the deadline is; writing an outline is never a waste of time. Once you have a general idea about the project you’re supposed to submit, give it shape. Plan every single thing you’re going to write in the introduction, body, and conclusion of the content.

The outline will speed up the writing process because you’ll already be aware of the logical flow you want to achieve.

Focus

writing focus

When you have a deadline to meet, something inside is telling you to organize all your clothes by color, clean the entire kitchen, or polish the silver. Any task seems urgent, but don’t fall victim to the tricks your mind plays on you.

If you really want to write that content by the due date, you need to glue yourself to your seat and work on it. Leave your phone in another room. Block all distracting websites. Tell everyone you need to stay alone and focus on the task you have to complete.

You can give yourself short breaks after each milestone you achieve. For example, you can take a coffee or a healthy snack after two hours of devoted work.

See Also: 4 Habits That Will Improve Your Focus And Destroy Procrastination

Tools that Help You Write Fast

When you think about the tools you need to write that piece ASAP, it may occur to you that you only need a computer and a notebook. Well, that’s not the case. There are great online tools that can help you work faster.

  1. Pinterest

You didn’t expect this one, did you? Although Pinterest looks like nothing more than a mainstream tool for trendsetters, it’s perfect for collecting online sources. Create a private board and collect all important online publications there. Then, you’ll easily access them and you’ll always know where your ideas came from.

  1. AdBlock or LeechBlock

These browser extensions (for Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox respectively) will prevent you from wasting time on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and other distracting websites. Adjust the settings and make sure to block all social media sites and forums that usually tempt you.

3. Quora

Do you have any dilemmas about the issue you elaborate? Post a specific question on Quora. You’ll get answers by knowledgeable people, who will give you fresh ideas related to your topic.

4. Google Calendar

This is the ultimate organization tool for writing projects. When you plan all steps that drive you towards successful completion, the goal will seem achievable and you’ll start writing with greater self-confidence. Make sure to plan the stages of completion in your calendar and follow them as precisely as possible.

Are you ready to tackle the next writing challenge? Take a deep breath and start working on it!

 

The post How To Avoid A Content Crisis When Your Deadline Is Looming appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

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The 6 Item Checklist for Effective Freelancing This Year

Freelancing is an excellent way to build your income or your confidence if you are just getting started. If you are willing to put in the extra work, becoming a freelancer can be extremely lucrative.

Effective freelancing involves goal-setting, deciding how many hours to dedicate, and harnessing the support of family and friends.

We’ve put together a 6 item checklist that will break down the process and help you be a more productive freelancer.

Highlight Your Skills

It is not mandatory to freelance in the same field you work in now. Take into account all the abilities you have, including hard skills and soft skills. Determine the areas where you can excel.

If you are confused, there are career assessment tests available online to help identify your strong traits and evaluate where your skills lie. For example, if you are a good writer, you may want to consider freelancing as a content creator.

See Also: 7 Convincing Reasons for Working as a Freelancer 

Define Your Personal Brand

It is important not only to understand your skills and talents but to also make sure that potential employers know about them. Your skills must translate into relevant services that you can provide for them. Most employers don’t have the attention span to go through pages of content. So it is critical to nail your resume to stand out from the clutter and establish yourself as a brand.

Use Social Media to Increase Visibility

social media presence

In today’s world, it is important to have a presence online. An easy way for freelancers to establish an online presence is through social media. Harness the power of social media platforms like LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram to create an active presence online.

You can also use websites such as Upwork and Fiverr to reach potential clients directly and also use private networking communities on Facebook. It is an added advantage if you can support your social media presence with a professional website or blog. This lends legitimacy and credibility to your work and provides a professional platform. You will also be able to outline your expertise and services and project a positive image.

Be a Pro at Networking

It is important to build and use your network as a freelancer. Learning how to reach out to other freelancers and potential employers can help you grow your business in numerous ways. By projecting the right image of your brand to family, friends, and colleagues, you will set the groundwork for the future success of your venture.

Have a short pitch about the services you offer ready at all times. This will enable you to be clear about your message and the service you provide. Ensure that you practice this pitch so that it comes out naturally and does not sound awkward or forced. Be ready to take on new jobs at any time as a single conversation can lead to new job opportunities.

When an opportunity arises, you need to be able to convince the client that you are the ideal candidate for the job. The best way to approach a pitch is to talk to the client and understand their needs.

Decide On the Right Rate to Charge and Price Yourself Suitably As a Freelancer

When it comes to negotiations and pricing, it can be difficult to decide how much to charge as this is linked to how much you think you are worth. However, it is important to understand that the best clients are those who are willing to pay for the added value you provide and appreciate it. So setting the right price and not selling yourself short will pay off in the long run, although you may end up losing some business.

You can also adjust pricing as you go, but it is important to make a profit in order to continue. Nail the money-making aspect of your freelance business by scoping out each job and assigning a fee. When setting your rates, it is essential to take factors such as market, location, visibility and demand into consideration.

You can also do some research or talk to other freelancers to find out how much they charge. The freelancing community is very open and welcoming, so you can get useful tips from other freelancers on ways to operate.

Set Tangible Goals and Develop a Game Plan to Achieve These

tangible goals

To be successful as a freelancer, it is important to set goals and continuously move forward. This will help you graduate to the next level and enhance your skills. It will also allow you to gain new clients and even charge higher rates.

As a freelancer, you will not be getting a steady paycheck, so you need to plan accordingly and get ready for the ups and downs in cash flow. Learn about taxes, income and expense planning and become comfortable with handling these.

In addition to making money, it is also essential to do enjoyable work that makes you feel fulfilled. When you are passionate about what you do, you will be able to grow your freelancing skills organically without worrying about keeping your business afloat.

Final Thoughts

You can set yourself up for success as a freelancer by following the guidelines mentioned in this article. It is important to be organized and handle invoicing, deadlines, etc. with clarity.

Understand the job at hand and align your expectations with that of your client. Establish the top priorities of the project and ensure that you meet them. As a freelancer, the work ebbs and flows, so it can be difficult to maintain a consistent schedule.

Another important aspect of freelancing is time management. As a freelancer, you need to be disciplined and self-motivated to maintain a work-life balance. Be aware of the financial and legal obligations that come with the reality of being self-employed. Consistently meeting client expectations and managing your resources are keys to a successful and fulfilling career as a freelancer.

See Also: 9 Tips To Overcome Stress For Freelancers

 

The post The 6 Item Checklist for Effective Freelancing This Year appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

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5 Hacks To Help You Reuse Old Content for More Traffic

Creating stunning new content regularly is a hell of a task, I know. Are you plagued by the same concerns? Low on time to create converting content? Looking for smart ways to use your old and existing content to drive more visits to your blog?

Here are 5 superb methods to help you create new content faster.

Transform Your Webinar Content Into A Series of YouTube Episodes

youtube series

If you have already done a few webinars, you can reuse them to drive visits to your websites. Begin by collecting related webinars together. Now, split them into 10 (or 6) minute videos, and create a whole episodic series of short advice videos. You can then shares these episodes one by one on your YouTube channel, and during each upload, suggest the viewer hop over to your website to get a sneak-peek into the upcoming episode.

Check out Moz’s list of YouTube tools to optimize your video content, and increase the campaign’s effectiveness. I’ve used this tactic and literally tripled the eventual success of my webinars by transforming them into a series of YouTube episodes.

Weave Your Related Blog Posts into An Ebook

blog posts ebook

Not done any webinars yet? No issues. I am sure you have a few super successful blog posts already. Arrange posts from a single niche together, and weave them into a nice and comprehensive ebook. I’d say 80% of your work is copy paste, and the rest is about connecting the dots and organizing the content into a book form. Once your ebook is ready, you can use it as a freebie to promote lead generation from your blog landing pages (motivate users to share email ID by offering free ebook). ShoutMeLoud’s list of top ebook creation tools will help you.

See Also: 5 Proven Strategies That Can Massively Increase Blog Traffic

Use Your Old Website A/B Test Experiences As Knowledge With the World

In the past couple of years, experimental data and case studies have grown as a more sophisticated and effective method of building credibility and authority in one’s niche. Did you run an A/B test on your website, to evaluate the effectiveness of your marketing strategies, landing page’s conversion ratio, buying guides on your e-stores, or keyword research?

Well, if you have the data with you, and memory that serves you well, you can organize it all, and share your experience-based outcomes in the form of a case study. Also, remember this tactic the next time you do any kind of comparisons and testing for your website. Such a case study will help you build authority, and can aid in email marketing and lead generation activities.

Let Your Powerpoint Presentations Do Some Magic

I’m assuming you’d have created at least a few presentations (Powerpoint, or any other) in the past couple of years. Why let them eat dust? Get them all, put them in a folder, organize the content, update them wherever necessary, and give them a makeover by using a decent template. Once done, you have a whole gold mine of slides that can bring traffic to your web pages.

To achieve this, create a SlideShare account, upload the presentations there, and embed some of the slides into your web pages. Be creative, and you can easily motivate readers to share email ids in exchange of complete decks. I strongly advise you to check out LifeHack’s list of top 10 suggestions to create stunning PowerPoint presentations.

The Quora Method of Repurposing Your Old Blog Posts to Garner Fresh Traffic

A lot of bloggers and content marketers like you are excited about Quora. Here’s a tactic to help you make the most of it. Study some of the more successful blog posts you have done. Now, go to Quora, and search for questions that are answered, to some extent, by your posts.

Hint: Go for Quora questions with the high number of upvotes, because it means they are in demand, and actively visited.

Now, answer the question on Quora in your words, and suggest readers check out the finer details by visiting your blog post.

See Also: 8 Common Content Marketing Myths You Should Stop Believing

 

The post 5 Hacks To Help You Reuse Old Content for More Traffic appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

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5 Reasons Why I Fell in Love with Swift

Swift, as many of you would know, is the programming language for iOS developed by Apple after Objective-C. Swift was launched approximately two years back and it was an instant hit among the iPhone app development services. With a few new releases and version updates, Swift has been able to swiftly and effortlessly replace its predecessor—the Objective-C. Due to the ease of use, it is the first choice made by professionals who offer iPhone app development services.

When I personally started using Swift, it took some time before I got accustomed to it. But then, the more I worked on it, the more I grew fond of it.

In this blog, I will focus on the top 5 reasons why I fell in love with Swift:

Multiple-Features

apple_swift

Swift has a lot of features that provide ease, flexibility, and liberty to be creative. In terms of ease and flexibility, Swift offers short and adept syntax and community support. In terms of liberty, Swift lets you create your own extensions and share them across the community for all associated members. Swift lets you learn by making use of the integrated playground that is your medium to experiment and create new things.

Easy to Learn

Another feature why I fell in love with Swift is its adaptability and easy-to-learn feature. Basic knowledge and working module can be learnt through online videos posted by advance developers.

These posted videos provide some specific ideas on how to go about Swift. The learning is also easy because of Apple’s stringent procedure of approving its product therefore the videos which are posted on Apple’s official eBook can be truly relied on. Swift users are also givers — givers in the sense that they provide details about their hard work and process. By sharing, they make life easier for amateur Swift users.

Futuristic

swift playground

The best part of Swift is that it is futuristic. This feature makes Swift the most used language by developers because it of its ability to solve any task. Swift is in-built with ARC (Automatic Reference Counting) which allows Swift to give proper results by guessing the searched words similar to Google’s auto-complete feature for word searches. It is perhaps the only language which can be used simultaneously with Objective-C.

Swift Development

Swift is really swift. It is perhaps the fastest among all the programming languages. However, it requires iOS 7 or macOS10.9 versions. With the use of Swift, you receive fast results which enable you to overcome any problem in the development stage. It is a huge time-saver.

Debugging

Many programming languages struggle in debugging during development. iPhone app development services providers take utmost precaution to overcome such instances. In contrast, Swift has the ability to debug in the process of development. With use of real eval print loop (REPL), it is easily to debug scripts. Swift is therefore considered to be ideal for quality system programming language.

Conclusion

With Swift, there are immense opportunities and a lot of those rely on your skills. If you are a Swift fan, share your knowledge and the reasons you prefer Swift as your programming language.

 

The post 5 Reasons Why I Fell in Love with Swift appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

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7 Tips to Happy Coworking with Your Pets

It may surprise you to know a few facts:

There are about 80 million dogs and more than 90 million cats nice and comfy in U.S.A. homes.

According to the New Jersey Institute of Technology, 45% of people telecommute for at least part of their work week.

Now that’s a lot of mega numbers and stats to throw at you – but it only means one thing to pet parents who are trying to get work done from a home office: that one of your closest coworkers has four paws and may need a walk at lunchtime or perhaps some tuna!

If you are working from home but are having a challenging time with your pet, hopefully these tips will help you. Probably the most important “take away” to understand is that your four-footed colleagues have needs and priorities, just as anyone who is trying to reach a work deadline or land a big client does too. If you are tempted to work from home then it is important for you to understand that getting along with your pets is part of the equation.

Tip #1: Your pet belongs in the home just as you do.

If you are frustrated at your pet’s actions while you are working, realize that in some ways you have “invaded” their space. You have been the one who has been working outside of the home, going to school or who has had another routine. In other words, they are the alpha dog and you are the beta.

coworking desk with pet

Tip #2: Understand that your dog or cat has a “job” just as you do.

Now drinking out of the toilet in the middle of the day or watching traffic go by from the biggest window in the living room may not seem like the toughest job you’ve ever seen – and we certainly aren’t going to disagree with you. But your pet is doing what they’ve always done and what you love them for – being a pet and an animal! Most pets have a sense of a routine to their day and will regularly do things in the morning, mid-day and then the afternoon just as you do for your job. Now that you are working from home – your job and their “job” may have conflicts, as your pet is trying to do what they’ve always done and you, my friend, are trying to do something new. Again, you are the beta.

Tip #3: If their actions disrupt yours, how can you work with them?

You may need to help them modify behavior – or you may need to slightly modify yours if you can. Now this is one of the most helpful tips to getting along with your pet. I’ll give you an example from working from home with my cat Sammy.

Sammy was part Russian Blue, a cat breed that is known for being very social, super friendly and also extremely vocal (big meows!). I would be on the telephone with clients and they would say, “Do you need to check on that crying baby?” Most of my clients are pretty understanding about a cat, but if I was making an important call or calling a new client – I would put Sammy outside or try to call when he was going outside for awhile.

I have a new cat now, Penguin. He has a very sweet personality but I’ll admit I’m finding it frustrating that he is absolutely determined to walk straight across my keyboard when I’m typing! To modify his behavior, I’m picking him up when he starts to walk by and then patting him. It seems to me that he wants my attention because the computer and keyboard have all of my focus in that moment – and smart lil’ kitty has figured that out! So again, modifying behavior can be possible too sometimes.

Other ways to modify behavior include giving them toys to play with as a distraction, treats for a reward for good behavior, and sending them outside (like with Sammy).

Tip #4: Be proactive about phone time.

After chatting with work-at-home friends, I discovered that this is one of the top challenges they’ve faced with working with a pet. The pet is either noisy or simply wants them to be with them instead of the phone. Realize that you have made the choice to work from home and it may come with some benefits – no commute other than from your morning cup of coffee to your laptop and you can wear yoga pants all day. But your phone calls to your boss should not be interrupted by you saying every 2 minutes “Not now Pickles, walk time later! Sorry…what was that again?” Otherwise you’ll likely find yourself back in the cubicle farm and someone on the other end of Pickles’ leash!

morning routine

Tip #5: Protect your computer.

Anyone who has not dropped out of the sky from a time machine sent from 1982 or who is not a complete luddite knows that you need to have antivirus software. But that’s not at all what this is about. I’m talking about protecting it from your four-footed coworker.

Yes, there is actually software to prevent what is called “cat like typing!” So when your pet jumps up and types RFTRFTRFTRFT all over your report and then puts a hind leg on the Enter key, this lovely document will not be sent to the Corporate Office where they will wonder what you are putting in your morning coffee.

Tip #6: Listen to what your pet is saying to you when they act up.

One of the true gifts of working at home with pets is you have the opportunity to really bond with your pet, spending time with them during the day you might not have otherwise. And the two of you may need to adjust to this, as I’ve mentioned, with you needing to help them modify a bit and you doing that as well.

But if you’ve tried this in a gentle way and your dog keeps barking or your cat keeps being disruptive, it may be time to take them to the vet. It is better to have a quick vet visit to rule out other conditions, like an illness that is causing them pain or discomfort so they are acting in this way because they are uncomfortable and upset.

No one wants their pet to suffer and if there is nothing else going on, your vet may have other tips to suggest for you, ways to modify your home environment, or routine to help them as they know your specific pet.

Tip #7: Be glad you can cowork with your pet.

All joking aside, one of the things I’ve enjoyed the most about working from home is spending time with my cats. You can remind me of that in case Penguin does manage to send a funny document to a client as I help him “modify” his behavior!

Two years ago, my cat Steinbeck was diagnosed with cancer and given a month to live, if that. I was devastated but took comfort in the fact that I would be at home with him as much as possible. Stienbeck lived for four and a half months, in comfort, active and with a hearty appetite, all things that surprised his vet. “He lived to be with you,” one of my friends told me. Enjoy every day with your pets!

See Also: 8 Tips for Coping with Pet Loss

 

The post 7 Tips to Happy Coworking with Your Pets appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

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10 Amazing Business Ideas For Stay-At-Home Retirees

Retirement does not mean that a senior just has to sit at home and do nothing. Many seniors prefer to work even after they have crossed the retirement age. Some seniors actually perceive this as a golden opportunity to follow their long forgotten entrepreneurship dreams.

Listed below are 10 businesses that seniors can successfully run from home.

Knitting

knitting

Knitting is an excellent activity to be pursued in the later years. It is known to reduce stress and boost self-esteem and cognitive functions.

Recently, 91-year-old Morrie Boogart became an inspiration for seniors when he didn’t let his limited mobility stand in the way of helping homeless and needy in Michigan.

Seniors who know how to knit or have learnt it as a new hobby in their golden years can knit beautiful pieces and then turn this hobby into a business. They can even create a blog and sell their products online along with donating some to a charity. They can even help the needy with the proceeds of the sales.

Crocheting

Just like knitting, crocheting is also an amazing activity for seniors who are skilled. They can make their crocheted goods and sell it in the market or to a reseller. They can even setup a small shop in their home and earn in their golden years. It will keep seniors busy and provide a sense of being resourceful and independent.

Freelance Writing

Seniors with good writing skills can also become freelance writers or become text brokers if they know people who can write and have great marketing skills. It allows them to keep on searching for new things and gaining knowledge about a variety of things, even in senior years, while providing a way to make money.

Writing is known to boost mental wellbeing as it keeps us engaged in reading, researching and finding new stuff to write about.

Blogging

blogging

Blogging is a way of sharing ideas, professional and personal experiences with the world. Seniors can create their own blog and give space on their website to place advertisements so they can earn some extra money or by affiliate marketing. With so many years and experiences behind them, seniors have a lot they can share with their readers.

Teaching

Another potential way of making money in one’s golden years is teaching. Seniors who are devoted to helping children and adults solve math problems, gain knowledge or learn new skills, like knitting, crocheting, sewing, pottery, painting, sketching, cooking, dancing, hairstyling, make up, and many others, can consider becoming a teacher.

Along these lines, a senior can set up a school and become a private teacher or an online teacher. It can be a part-time or full-time job entirely depending on how much time they have got to spend.

Consulting

Seniors must focus on opportunities that can leverage their years of work and career experience, such as consulting. Consulting is a great business for retirees who have learned a lot from their life lessons and previous jobs. Such experiences make seniors well positioned to convey their opinions and share their knowledge.

It is not necessary to share knowledge through face-to-face meetings. Freelance writing and blogging can also be pursued as ways of engaging in an online community, hence, generating income.

Gardening Maintenance Services

Elderly who have sufficient knowledge in gardening can offer their skilled services even in their neighborhood so they don’t have to go to remote areas. This provides a source of income with an opportunity to make new friends and socialize.

Gardening is a relaxing activity, known to alleviate stress and help stay fresh in golden years.

Pet Sitting

pet sitting

Pet sitting is one of the best ways to earn while enjoying the time spent with a furry friend. This is not only a way to make money post-retirement. It is also an effective kind of therapy to find relaxation and a sense of purpose in one’s golden years.

Seniors who love spending time with animals can consider pet sitting. They can ask their neighbors to let them know if they need a pet sitter or even their family members so they can earn while enjoying some time with loving creatures.

Babysitting

Seniors who enjoy the company of children can make great babysitters as they have sufficient knowledge of handling little children and helping them with their concerns like home work, hair-dos, dressing, eating meals, dealing with a bully in school etc.

Spending time with children provides seniors with enthusiasm to help them pursue their goals and share thoughts to let their inner artist shine. In fact, children can make us learn a lot of new things as well.

Cooking – Takeaway Restaurant

Seniors who can cook amazingly delicious dishes can open a takeaway restaurant in their own homes. They can take orders via the phone or online.

Cooking will not only give seniors an opportunity to earn, but will also motivate to do more. This way, senior can also help the poor and needy people by giving food or some money that they have earned.

These are some of the amazing, fun and resourceful ways of making money after retirement. They provide the elderly with a sense of purpose, self-satisfaction, daily motivation, and a boost in one’s physical and mental being. Overall, this helps seniors enjoy an active and happy life in one’s golden years.

See Also: Retirement Activities that are Financially Viable 

 

The post 10 Amazing Business Ideas For Stay-At-Home Retirees appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

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How to Keep Your Blog Running Smoothly

While blogging is an interesting hobby that can even become your main source of income if you put some effort into it, it still requires a lot of hard work. The real challenge begins not when you start your blog and write a few first posts, but when you actually start building up your loyal audience. Simply being dedicated, monitoring the blogging trends and updating regularly is not enough to run your blog smoothly: you have to build a certain strategy and stick to it.

Lucky for you, there are actually only a few things you need to focus on. These include ocial media, quality of your content, emails, trends and statistics.

Today, I’m going to tell you more about them, allowing you to create your own system of running your blog smoothly.

Social media

social media

Even if your posts are amazing, they’re useless if no one can find them. That’s what you need social media for. Social media platforms help people find you, share your articles and ideas, recommend you to friends, and so on.

To create a correct social media strategy, try to imagine your potential audience. What is it like? Maybe it consists of young people who spend most of their time online on Twitter, or maybe it mostly consists of active Facebook users. This is especially important to understand if you don’t have much time to spend on social media. Having this information lets you focus on a single platform and update the others when you have time for it.

However, social media can be used not only for sharing your new posts. If you update your blog once a week, this means that your social media accounts will look quite empty the rest of the week. Try sharing other interesting information, or create other types of content (for example images, videos, etc.). This way, your followers will stick to your social media accounts. After all, they’ll be able to find something there that isn’t posted on your blog.

Content

The content is what brings people to your blog. That’s why it has to be interesting and valuable to the readers. Focus on making your content as high-quality and unique as possible. Don’t forget that this is even more important than regular updates and this has to be a priority. If you have to choose between updating your blog more often and making the content more interesting, choose the latter.

Researching your niche and what your competitors are up to is an extremely important part of the whole blogging process. You have to do your research well and repeat it few times a month in order to see what your competitors can offer and which blogging trends exist on the web. This will allow you to respond to these trends with your content and to avoid unintentional plagiarism.

See Also: How To Find The Best Topic For Your Blog 

Analytics

If you want to run your blog smoothly, you need to understand which of your methods work well and which don’t. This will allow you to optimize them and to adjust your strategy according to the preferences of your audience.

Analytics is the main tool that can help you with that. It allows you to understand where your audience is coming from, how much time they spend on your website, which posts they like the most and so on. Lucky for you, there’s an easy way to go about it. All you need to do is to use the Google Analytics service and to learn how to work with it.

It is important not only to analyze the effectiveness of your blog but also to make it more effective. That’s why you should learn more about the latest SEO trends and try to incorporate them in your blog. However, be sure not to overdo it. If your posts are overloaded with keywords, readers will notice it and this can turn them away.

See Also: 5 Proven Strategies That Can Massively Increase Blog Traffic

Email offers

email marketing

Even now, despite the development of social media, emails still remain the most effective marketing tool. Don’t hesitate to use that tool for your blog promotion and remember, those who subscribe to your blog are your most loyal readers.

However, if you don’t have an email list yet and want people to subscribe, you have to offer them something valuable. Yes, many people do subscribe simply because of new posts notifications, but you’ll be surprised how much this number could increase if you offer something more interesting for everyone who’ll subscribe, for example, an eBook.

It’s important to repeat such offers from time to time, changing the content every time, instead of doing this only once. This way you’ll be able to keep the existing subscribers as well as attract new ones.

What is even more important is learning how to integrate all these things mentioned above into your blogging strategy. Learning more about them is one thing but learning how to use them is another.

To do so, you need to spend some time thinking about these things. Which strategies will benefit your blog immediately and which ones will do so only with time? Which ones are the easiest to do and which ones require more time and effort to understand and implement them? Answering these questions will help you set your priorities. You will see what you have to focus on first and what can be done later. Maybe your content is good enough already but you have no idea about how to use Google Analytics. It’s time to figure this out.

After you do so, write down the main things you need to add to your marketing strategy and try to add them to your blogging schedule. For example, if you want to focus on social media, don’t forget to schedule the nearest updates and find some time to learn more about the most popular types of social media content in your niche. And if you need to focus on emails, try finding time to read some guides and to learn how to write emails better.

I hope that this article will help you and inspire you. Good luck with your blog!

 

The post How to Keep Your Blog Running Smoothly appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

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5 Awesome Tools To Help You Newbie Geeks With Your Open Source Project

Every new year welcomes new resolutions.

We probably all want the same thing — to achieve more and feel proud of what we have achieved. For example, Mark Zuckerberg’s is to visit and meet someone in every U.S. state and mine is to keep my website alive for as long as I am living.

If you are one of those passionate IT folks, technical nerds and computer enthusiasts who are still looking for a challenge this year, here may be one that will interest you: an open source project.

So, as you kick-start the new year aiming to achieve and share greatness, here are five easy-to-use tools that can help you.

GitHub

github

John Resig, the creator of jQuery, once tweeted: “When it comes to hiring, I’ll take a Github commit log over a resume any day.” GitHub is undoubtedly the largest developer community in the world. Programmers like yourself go there when it comes to hosting your codes, and sharing and contributing to them.

GitBook

gitbook

GitBook is a simple online and desktop tool for building books. Like GitHub, it is seen as a tool for programmers. But it can be surprisingly useful even for non-tech writers – especially if you want to write your books or documents about your project. You can use Markdown to write, edit and style your content simultaneously. To publish, a simple git push is all you need.

Sublime Text

sublime text

In the question “What is the best programming text editor you are using?”, the answer is usually Sublime Text. It is a simple and sophisticated-looking text editor that comes with color schemes for your codes.

When you switch between different files or search, it is blazing fast, and stable. Not to mention it comes with the best Markdown experience you will ever find, as well as tons of packages like Pretty JSON that will make your use of this tool even richer.

Quire

quire

While being a task management tool, Quire can play a part in your open source project too. If you prefer an interactive place for your milestones or features (which you probably entered in spreadsheet apps like Microsoft Excel and ZK Spreadsheet), tutorial or guide, or even a public forum, list them all out here.

With features like favorites and comments, you can see right away what topics are more popular, have a say in discussions, change the priority of your plan whenever you want, etc. Github commit links can even be found in the comments once you integrate with it.

See Also: 5 Essential Tools And Apps To Build Your Early Startup 

Inkscape

inkscape

Last but not least, where will your project be without design? Seen as a great alternative to Adobe Illustrator, Inkscape is a free (and open-source) vector graphic editor made for you to create illustrations, arts, logos, charts, and paintings. Some say it is way ahead of Illustrator for its better UI, same professionalism, and superior quality features. It has also got a massive community forum where you can show off your work, and contribute ideas to.

See Also: 20 Best Productivity Apps and Programs for 2017

 

The post 5 Awesome Tools To Help You Newbie Geeks With Your Open Source Project appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

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9 Tips To Overcome Stress For Freelancers

You’re a freelancer. You work day in and out, Mondays to Fridays, and sometimes even during the weekends. You spend more than 8 hours a day sitting in front of your computer with occasional coffee and TV breaks. Your inbox is always full, you never run out of deadlines, and your unfinished work is piling up on your desk.

The question is: How do you survive?

Stay on Schedule

Stress is a feeling brought by lack of control of a situation. And it happens to me whenever I break my schedule. One of the ways you can combat the feeling of stress brought about by being overwhelmed by the number of jobs you have to do is to create a doable schedule that works for you.

I personally have an excel file which I name “work calendar” and here I list every project I need to do every month. Sometimes my calendar will have work booked for more than 3 weeks. Sometimes when I’m running low, I only have work for the next three days. That’s the time I know I have to hustle.

Having a schedule helps you control the flow of work. It creates order in your work life.

Tаke Brеаkѕ

breaktime

It may seem counterproductive to take frequent breaks while working but believe me when I say breaks are the only thing that will probably keep you sane while working freelance.

There will be times when you simply don’t feel like sitting any longer in front of your computer because your eyes hurt or your brain isn’t working anymore. Don’t ignore it. Follow your body cues and take short breaks for no more than 30 minutes to refresh your mind and body.

See Also: Not Getting Enough Work Done? Try Taking More Breaks

Dоn’t let уоur сlіеntѕ gеt уоu down

I used to worry and feel stressed when my clients are not 100% happy. But then I realized that I can’t please every client I have. And this is perfectly normal.

Most freelancers encounter difficult clients more than once in their freelance careers. Sometimes freelancers will encounter clients that are hard to understand, clients who don’t pay on time, or those that rush you for results even if it’s just a day after you started the contract.

Learn tо say NO

Being a freelancer means you have to go look for jobs yourself. And while the competition is fierce, that doesn’t mean you have to say “Yes” to every job offer that comes your way.

Don’t accept jobs if you’re already over-scheduled. Don’t write for free for a test job. Don’t slave away for work with little pay. Be honest if you aren’t comfortable in writing a subject far from your niche, and politely decline.

Set Rules Before Starting any Job/Project

Clarify everything before starting the project. This includes project due dates and pays schedules which will save everyone a huge headache later on. If a сlіеnt is ореnlу rudе tо you, drор thеm. Bе сlеаr аbоut уоur hours. If your client resides on the other side of the world, let them know the time to contact you. You don’t want to be answering client calls at 3 am in the morning.

Outsource

Now that you’re earning more than you can handle. It’s time to delegate tasks so you could accomplish more during the day.

If you don’t want to do your admin tasks, you can hire a virtual assistant to do it for you. If you’re a web designer, you can outsource web content to a writer who can do the job better than you. Sites like Upwork, Freelancer.com, and EssayPro.Club have available workers to help with tasks and projects for every kind of freelancer.

Write on your niche

niche writing

I found that when I’m passionate about what I’m writing, I tend to write more smoothly and quickly. In freelancing, it’s important to know your strengths and weaknesses. If you excel at writing humor pieces, don’t spend all your time writing boring tech pieces. Figure out what sets your writing apart and focus on the stuff that only you could write.

Bе рrераrеd tо defend уоur lifestyle tо ѕtrаngеrѕ

Sоmе реорlе wіll think you’re living an enviable life as a freelancer while others will look at you with fаіnt panic because іt dіѕtrеѕѕеѕ thеm thаt уоu’vе chosen such аn uncertain саrееr раth. Don’t let them get to you. Go to workshops аnd seminars, find your соmmunіtу of artistic ѕuрроrt, аnd trу tо lооk worldly and knowing in front of judgmental strangers.

Manage Time Wisely

Set work hours every day and stick to it. It will help if you set timers or batch your day for certain projects. For example, you can focus all morning to work on your website, the afternoon to edit your content, and the evenings to answer client calls. Make it work for you. Remember that you control your time as a freelancer.

See Also: 7 Convincing Reasons for Working as a Freelancer 

Closing Thoughts

Too much ѕtrеѕѕ саn hаrm your frееlаnсе wrіtіng career, аѕ well аѕ your mіnd and bоdу. Try thе above tірѕ tо ѕее іf they can work for уоu.

 

The post 9 Tips To Overcome Stress For Freelancers appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

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10 Ways Your Life Improves When You Become a Freelancer

Have you ever considered how your life might change if you became a freelancer?

It’s nice having job security. You know you have a guaranteed paycheck every two weeks, a set schedule, good benefits, and two weeks of vacation each year. But deep down inside, there is a nagging question that never really goes away:

Could I have a better life if I hung my shingle as a freelancer?

For many, the answer is a definite yes. And there has never been a better time to be in business for yourself providing freelance services to others.

Becoming a freelancer is not without its challenges, of course. You have to be highly self-motivated, know how to advertise effectively, and be able to offer a service that others want and need. But once established with a handful of customers who give you repeat business, your quality of life will improve in a number of ways.

You Earn More When You Work More

As a salaried employee, it doesn’t matter whether you work 40 hours a week or 60. It also doesn’t matter whether you work harder than everyone else in your department or do just enough to keep from getting fired. You are paid exactly the same regardless of your efforts.

See Also: 5 Freelancing Tips That Will Make you Successful 

Things are much different for freelancers.

As a freelancer, the more projects you take on, the more you earn. If you want to earn more to save up for a new car, you can take on more client projects and work longer hours. And on the other hand, if you are comfortable with earning less and want to have more time to enjoy life, you can do that, too.

You Can Work Wherever You Want

work anywhere

As an employee, you usually have to work at a designated location. Yes, there are some companies that now recognize the benefits of letting employees work from home. But for most companies, such arrangements are the exception rather than the norm.

As a freelance, you are free to work wherever you want – even if it’s from your hotel room while you’re on an extended Caribbean vacation or while you’re traveling the country in an RV. There’s a good reason why many refer to freelancing as the laptop lifestyle. You have everything you need to run your business as long as you have access to a laptop computer, a telephone, and an internet connection.

See Also: 5 Ways To Travel The World While Keeping a Full-Time Job

You Get to Set Your Own Hours

Employees usually have to adhere to a rigid schedule with set hours. Not so for freelancers who have a great deal of flexibility in when they work.

Do you do your best work early mornings or late at night? No problem. As a freelancer, you can work during the hours of your choosing. You can also take time off if you aren’t feeling well without having to explain your absence to a boss.

No More Commute

The daily commute to and from work takes up a huge chunk of your everyday life.  As a freelancer, you are already at work wherever you are so you are able to reassign your commute time to either more work hours or more leisure time.

And in addition to saving time from cutting out the commute, you also save by putting fewer miles on your vehicle each year. That means you get to save big on maintenance, repairs, and expensive fuel.

No More Following Company Rules

As an employee, you usually have to follow a rigid – and often lengthy – set of company rules. Sometimes these rules are based on common sense and are easy to follow. But that’s not always the case.

As a freelance entrepreneur, you are your own boss. Your work rules are whatever you say they are. You are free to make things as rigid or relaxed as you like.

You Save Money on Work Attire

Nearly all companies have dress codes that you are required to follow. And this can really get expensive if you are expected to dress up on a daily basis.

As a freelancer, you are free to dress however you like. Your work attire could be sweatpants and a t-shirt if you prefer. This lets you save big on pricey outfits and cleaning bills.

You Get to Skip Time-Wasting Meetings

If you’ve ever been in an unproductive meeting that felt like it would never end, you’re certainly not alone. Company meetings are notorious time-wasters. But attendance is often mandatory.

As a freelancer, you can keep the meetings to a minimum. If it’s necessary to have a meeting with a client, you can set the terms to make sure it’s brief, to the point, and that it stays on track.

An End to Office Politics

Dealing with office politics can be demeaning. Being in a position where you have to affirm everything your boss says and does to advance your career is a terrible way live.

As a freelancer, you don’t have to be a “yes person” to anyone. You are the boss. You get to earn more by working more instead of brown nosing for a promotion.

You Get to Take Breaks Whenever You Want

freelancing benefit

As an employee, you are trading hours for dollars. The company owns your time. They determine your work schedule, approve your vacation time, and even tell you when you can take a break.

As a self-employed freelancer, you can take a break whenever you like and for as long as you want. As long as you complete all of your work, it truly doesn’t matter. There are some, for example, who can actually increase their productivity by taking short, frequent breaks.

No More Thermostat Wars

Do you prefer to work in an environment that’s a little warmer or cooler than everyone else? Well, tough luck if you work for a company where thermostats are typically set for maximum efficiency. Your options are usually limited to bundling up or bringing a fan and hoping for the best.

As a freelancer, you are completely free to keep your dwelling as warm or cool as you like. Being comfortable in your environment allows you to concentrate on your work without the distraction of being too warm or too cold.

The Grass Really is Greener on the Other Side

Making the transition from employee to freelance writer is not always easy, but it is definitely worth it. When you do, your quality of life will improve in so many ways, even ways you may not have thought of. There’s never been a better time to make it happen.

 

The post 10 Ways Your Life Improves When You Become a Freelancer appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

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