December 22, 2016 - Comments Off on The best and the worst thing about freelancing

The best and the worst thing about freelancing

Hey there,
Hope you’re doing well.

Right before Christmas everyone starts to set goals for a new year. I do.

But hold a moment and think – how much you have achieved this year? Do you set new goals for a new year or just re-schedule last years goals?

Two years ago I have started to set goals. More of them was achieved, some not. But what I realized in two years is that if you didn’t achieve your goal and always set new and new deadlines for it - maybe it’s not so important for you?

This last year I doubled my monthly income, visited one new country (twice, 3 cities), the first time in my life I have been diving, got 2 awards on my projects, left the full-time job and became a real freelancer. I have started building my career as a freelancer on UpWork, and when I got few clients who always had a work for me I started thinking about my productivity. Primarily, I’m working with projects on hourly rate basis. This means to increase my hourly level I should provide more quality work faster.

The best and the worst thing about freelancing.

When you’re freelancer you have a freedom. You can work when you want and where you want. But here is a trick: in freelance, your time equals your money, so if you don’t work - you don’t earn money. This “freedom” is limited because no matter where you are: in your flat sitting in pajamas or on the beach in front of palms and the Atlantic Ocean - to earn money you should work.

Is there another way?

Yes. I know the system which will help me to increase my productivity 10x or even 100x times from now. I want to set up a system which will generate income without my direct actions.

I’m not lazy

I just don’t want to charge my time for money. I like to work and do design. I want to make money on design, but sometimes design process or developing a new product requires additional time and money to start and launch. I want to be sure my family is financially protected while I’m developing a new product.

What’s next?

I want 2017 year will become a new stage of my life. The next step to my happiest life. I have prepared a list of goals, I want to achieve this year, but I have only one goal as priority — first I should work on this goal, than on other. Less but better.

I think this post is the last this year. I promise next year I will publish more content: blog posts and video. So if you want to be first to get new posts, advice, and recommendations – subscribe now to my personal email list.

See you next year! 🎅

Sincerely yours,
Alex Dovhyi

December 11, 2016 - Comments Off on Why motivation sucks?

Why motivation sucks?

or why is discipline more important than motivation?

Actually, I do not quite understand why anyone needs to be motivated.
After all, there must be a reason why you born on this planet in human form.

You know what and how much you need and how much you can achieve. Why do you need to be motivated? People go to motivational seminars, jumping and breathing, and they stay motivated for a couple of days or weeks.

Then everything starts again.

After all, you could be born a tree. Or a dove. That would explain why our actions are limited. But you are a human. What kind of motivation do you need? You have so many possibilities.

You should understand that if you will not act your chances to succeed are equal to zero. But if you’re doing at least anything your chances are 100% more than zero. The action removes the fear. So if you’re afraid of anything just do it, and fear will disappear. It’s all about your desire to achieve your goal or dream. You could create a vaccine against the deadly virus, or go round the world trip with your wife and kids, or fly into space, or build a business, or just learn how to wake up with the sun. But you can’t, because you’re lazy. It’s hard for you to lift his ass off the sofa in front of TV and take a step towards its goal.

The saddest thing for me is watching how people burn their time. In the meaningless conversations, bars and alcohol. Or sleeping for 12 hours. How then you’re going to watch your children or parents in the eye?

Therefore, for me, the motivation is still some vague understanding.
It should be from inside of you. But you have to understand, this should not be as an effect. This should be your normal state.

Agree?

It is believed that motivation is everything. Without it, you will give up, your business will not succeed, your eyes will stop burning, and you will end up sitting on the sofa watching a British TV series endlessly and procrastinate.
But — it is a profound error.

There are disciplined people. Those who have never snoozed the alarm for 10 minutes later in the morning and have always gone to bed at 23:00, who feed exclusively on organic food and work like a luxury Swiss watch. Such people often stop at some level of their growth and can’t continue their path. Some successful point becomes the last for them. These people increase their discipline, but doing so does not help to go forward.

There are other people — dreamers. Things are burning in their minds. These people dream of their plans and lie with eyes open over a few nights, thinking of how to implement their plans. Sometimes these people are capable of working without sleep and rest, but a discipline for them still remains terra incognita. They are working like crazy, and resting like crazy. And these people also tend to be left without benefits. They are always a little bit not further squeezed, they don’t overcome the area where it’s necessary to blow up the space of your own efforts, but simply to drag the working load properly and evenly. They burn out during such periods and lose motivation.

Those who want to succeed need to become a synthesis of these two types:
A disciplined dreamer.

This man always starts with a simple and clear action — he wants to find his dreams.He is seeking it, using all possible techniques. If it’s necessary — he will meditate; if it’s necessary — he will travel around the world. But the fact is, he’ll find what makes him happy.

Statistics show that more than 50% of people do not like their job; however, we spend almost one-third of our life at work, so why should we flush our lives down the toilet?

But our disciplined dreamer doesn’t do this. When he has found an interesting occupation, he proceeds to create a clear plan.

It’s proper to split a big goal into two sub-goals.
1. Goal A. The minimum goal. A certain indicator, a red light, which should light up when you have reached that what you wanted. You should complete this no matter what. Goal A is regulated by discipline. Without it (discipline), it (Goal A) is unattainable.

2. Goal B. The maximum goal. This is a “bonus component” of Goal A. This is what you’re dreaming about. Without a dream “Goal B” is unattainable, no matter what discipline skills you have. Only a fire of dream could make you achieve this goal.

Discipline could help you to achieve Goal A; dreams will help you to achieve Goal B.

The desire to engage with only what you love looks like a drug addiction. It’s good if there are things that you love to do — you can work on these things almost all the time — but they account for only a certain percentage of the total number of cases in your life.

The truth sounds like this: sometimes you have to do very boring and fatiguing stuff, which, however, is very important for further progress. It is not written in any glossy book on motivation, but it’s true. I am very sincere sometimes I have to do what I hate. Routine work. The work is not for “my soul”. I’m doing it not because I’m terribly motivated by it, but because it is necessary. And this applies to every person. It is infantile to think that the world is a rainbow place filled with only pleasure and favorite work. Sometimes you have to work your fingers to the bone.

The word “necessary” should be firmly imprinted in the subcortex of your brain. It should become a red button, which, when pressed on, you instantly remove any bad moods and start to work.

Then it’s time for another surprising paradox of our brain: having started on a boring task, after some time, after deciding a few routine questions, you start to love what you’re doing. You want to do more your brain is tuned to work. That is why the morning is very important to force me to work. This is the reason why I’m starting my morning with complicated tasks.
When you start working hard, you realize your brain is capable of much. The main thing doesn’t give your brain easy life, remember: atrophied muscles become very weak!

Discipline is a starter that gets me up every morning.

Motivation is a navigator, which shows whether I’m moving in the right direction.

Motivation drives us while we realize our true desire to get something or someone. But, when this period passes (and it passes, in my case, for example, after a week or two), you begin to procrastinate.

George Bernard Shaw said

“The secret of our suffering is that we have too much time to think about the fact we are happy or not.”

Meanwhile, when the motivation is based on emotions and emotional state, a discipline is based on the fulfillment of the desired objectives whether you like it or not, have the mood or not this should be done.

Do not confuse these two concepts. You can get somewhere without a navigator, but you wouldn’t get off the ground if you don’t start the engine, even if you have with a super cool Garmin Dezl for $500 onboard.


If you have any questions in the meantime, hit me up on Twitter @dovhyi

Talk to you soon,
Alex


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December 7, 2016 - 6 comments

Apps & Services I use on daily basics – TOP10

Hey there!
Today I’m sharing with you my TOP 10 essential apps I use on daily basics.
DISCLAIMER: All of these apps are my personal recommendations based on what I use in my daily workflow and I'm not paid to endorse any of those.

 

1. Evernote

My digital brain. I use Evernote to remember everything. I use it daily for my journal, blog posts, travel plans and sometimes even shopping lists.
I use Evernote Premium, but even free version is enough to store information about all parts of my life.

2. Todoist

The best ever app I used for task tracking. It has all the features I need: projects, tags, reminders. It’s also has a cool feature such as location reminders, so I don’t forget important things when I come home.

I also use task & project sharing to collaborate with my team, so we are always on the same plate.

3. IFTTT

This is one of the coolest apps I have ever used. First, I use it to sync Evernote and Todoist so every time I tag a note “Todoist” a task with the link to note appears in my Inbox; and vice versa: when I tag a task “Evernote” – new note appears in my notebook.
This app has a huge number of different applets that you can use. One more that I use: if tomorrow's forecast calls for rain – get a notification.

4. Spark Email by Readdle

I thought there are no greatest app for emails than Gmail native app. Until Spark. First I met it on my iPhone and now it’s also available for Mac.
The most important thing for me in mail app is Smart Inbox with notifications (I want to be notified fro only very important things, not every email), snoozed mail (if you want to set a reminder about any email later today or any day) and pinned emails which gives access to most used conversations.

5. TunnelBear

One of my most loved VPN app. It goes both for Mac and iOS so it’s a good reason to use it. Free version includes about 500MB of data each month, paid subscription gives you unlimited traffic on any device.

6. 1password

This is where I save all my data secure. From passwords of social accounts to credit cards, license keys etc.

7. CoinKeeper

Do you track your income/outcome? I do. I tried a lot of different ways to manage expenses - from simple notebook and excel to proficient apps. But my choice for now is CoinKeeper. It's very easy to use and has somple design: just drag coins, enter numbers and done.
After few weeks you will see beautiful stats and analytics. Than you will be available to see where you spend your money.

8. Today

With today I manage my morning routine tasks and new habits I want to develop. The app has beautiful design and cool feature of cards for each habit. At this cards you can show your apple health data, milestones, custom counters, news or photo gallery.

9. Calm

I'm just starting to meditation, and Calm became my best friend for this task. When I need to relax from work or concentrate on any important thought I start breathing. I also use Calm to fall asleep when I want to have some nap.

10. SleepCycle

Sleep tracking is a cool feature if you want to stay healthy, do more and improve your sleep quality. Other sleep apps uses accelerometer to track your movement. SleepCycle can use microphone. This is good because I often drop my iPhone on the floor when it's lies near me at night. I also have a great analytics of my each day.

All of this services helps me to complete and track my everyday tasks. What are yours? Wirte in the comments!

Thank you for reading!

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November 29, 2016 - 2 comments

5 things I have learned when started to run every day

Hi, everyone!

One day I realized that I need to move if I want to live. Not so much dramatic as you could think but still. I’m working as product designer & entrepreneur and almost 8 hours per day I’m sitting on a chair and working on my tasks.

This rhythm of life is very unhealthy. So I started to do exercises and run every day.

Note: if you want to start running — the best time for this is NOW! Why? Because tomorrow you will forget about this or you will find more interesting tasks than this.

So let’s go forward to that 5 things I have learned:

  1. Running is healthy. When you run — you become healthy. Your blood becomes full of oxygen and your brain starts working faster and more efficient. Also, you will burn a lot of calories. This exercise has a very cool bonus — your body still burning calories when you stop. Studies have shown that regular exercise boosts “afterburn” — that is, the number of calories you burn after exercise. (Scientists call this EPOC, which stands for excess post oxygen consumption.)
  2. Running is motivating. You know that story about lion and antelope? The major thought is: every day in the morning somewhere in the jungles antelope wake up. And she needs to run, to not to be eaten by the lion. At the same time somewhere in the jungles lion wakes up. And he needs to run to not to die hungry. No matter who you are — a lion or an antelope. When the sun is rising — you need to run.
    This is it. When you’re running — you are alive. It gives an opportunity to not give up.
  3. Running is fun. Especially if you run with friends. I use Nike+ app to count my results and share it with friends. I started running this winter and when the snow falls — I didn’t stop. Why? Because it’s really fun to run on snow and feel cold on your cheeks.
  4. Running gives you more time. One my good friend said once: if you have no time — get more tasks. Here is his small story.
    I was a good scholar and have a very small time for myself. Once my good friend asks me if I want to go to the gym with him. I said that I have no time for this and bla-bla-bla. He tries few days after and I decided to try. And… it’s fairytale! It happened! I started to make to-do lists, plan my day. I what I found — I have enough time to do everything.
    Now we together working with week planning, set goals and achieve it. The major thought is — it really works.
  5. Running is inspiring. You running through the streets and see people’s, buildings, trees. You get inspired by them. This helps you to generate fresh thoughts and ideas. Also, when you running alone it helps you to deep inside your spirit and realize some important things on your life.

Summary

I love to achieve goals that I set for myself, and also like to make challenges. Running for me is a challenge, because I have never run before. It was hard for me not to run but to make it every day (or almost every day, to develop regularity). And for me, the best way to have no chance to give up is to set your goal on public.

So with this post I’m setting my goal — I need to run at least 3 times on week. An approval for this goal will be my instagram posts from running sessions. You can follow me to check if I’m doing well.

Final word

Without a challenge life is fucking boring.