How They Do It is an ongoing series in which I interview creatives, bloggers, students and freelancers about their productivity and time management strategies for creating awesomeness. Today, we'll hear some thoughts from Gina, student, blogger, creative mind and travel dreamer.
1. How would you describe the work that you do (whether it's an actual job or around the house or hobbies)?
I’m all about seeing people’s stories come alive through creativity. As a college student, I dabble in many different areas in my major, strategic communications, but I focus on web design, graphic design and interactive media. On the side, I run a blog and I’m in the process of opening design services for bloggers, too.
2. Would you (briefly) describe a typical work day for you?
There’s never a typical day for me in college, but my day–specifically a Thursday (my favorite day of the week)–goes a little bit like this:
8:30am : Wake up and relax in bed, checking my phone for social media updates, emails and the news.
9:30am : Eat breakfast and get ready for the day.
10:30am: First class of the day!
12pm : End class and walk back to my apartment to make lunch.
1pm : Work on school work for my classes and send emails to professors and/or bloggers and classmates
2pm : Second class of the day.
4pm : Class ends and I usually go back to my apartment and unwind by checking emails or social media. Or I clean up the apartment and do laundry.
5:30pm : Go to Zumba class, one of my favorite exercise routines.
7pm : Rush out of Zumba to grab a quick dinner on campus and go home to shower.
8pm : Attend a meeting for an organization or a class project.
10:30pm : Finish up schoolwork for the night and review my to-do list.
11:30pm : Catch up on my favorite TV show or Youtube channels before going to sleep.
12:30: Time for bed!
3. What's your workspace like?
My usual workspace is my desk in my room, complete with some flowers, my favorite pens and a notepad handy for to-do lists and reminders. I also like keeping some of my favorite journals nearby, which contain much of my blogging inspiration. When I’m not working at my desk, I choose the couch in the living room of my apartment, because it is a bright and sunny area!
4. When you are working, what is your biggest struggle as far as staying motivated and focused?
The hardest part for me is getting the courage and motivation to start a creative project (whether that is a paper for class, a design for a client or a blog post). I struggle with viewing work as huge projects and it’s sometimes hard for me to break it down into smaller pieces in order to be productive. Also, staying focused with social media at our fingertips is a skill in itself!
5. When you feel drained, what inspires you or pushes you to keep doing what you do?
I think it’s so important to have a creative community to inspire you and lift you up. My friends in my major and the bloggers I connect with have been major sources of motivation for me! Also, I love taking a break to refresh by working out or reading some of my inspiration journals that contain blog post ideas.
6. Do you have any favorite resources for organizing your work and time?
My planner! I found a planner at Target this year, and it has become my favorite planner of all time. I’ve used it more often than any planner in the past. I discovered I like the planners with the professional layout, organized by hours, rather than the academic setup in planners. My second go-to tool is Google Drive. It has become so helpful this year with organizing my classes, group projects, collab posts and blogging activities.
7. How do you refuel your soul after a long day?
I love to talk to my roommates and my friends after a long day and catch up with their lives. Also, I love journaling and reading at night, some of my favorite things.
Lastly, just for fun, would you list a few songs that you listen to while you work (or while you're not working!)?
I listen to the American Authors station and the Bad Suns station on Pandora, and lately I’ve been loving the song “Parachute Heart” by Aaron and Andrew, as well as many of their other songs.
Big thanks for Gina for sharing on the blog today! Do any of you use the same methods as Gina to stay focused and creative? Don't forget to say hi on Gina's blog!