← Blog

A Day in the Life of a Freelance Designer

Freelance work is beautiful and fulfilling but no doubt takes a lot of self motivation

UX/UI Design
3 minute read 

A day in the life of a freelance designer, but make it concise. Okay, let’s (try to) do this. Freelance is very dynamic and each day for me looks different. To have a bit of structure, I try to have a routine to keep me sane. My normal day starts at 8 am and ends at 4 pm. If my morning doesn’t start with coffee and a nutritious breakfast, I can confidently say, productivity will be low.


Before the morning starts, you sleep. What a concept, I know, but t has to be that way! I try to go to bed around 10 pm each evening to get a good night's rest. If all goes well, when my alarm goes off, no tears are shed. After ripping the blankets off and putting the slippers on, I walk myself to the kitchen and make a cheeky pour-over and some oatmeal. I prefer to get my day started right away so while I’m enjoying my fuel, I check emails and make a mental note of what the day is going to look like. After taking inventory of the emails and reviewing project schedules, I’ll start to plan out the tasks that I have to stay on track. I’ll set priorities, and deadlines, and make many many to-do lists.

At this point, my brain is usually very overwhelmed, but I must persist and stay focused. The core of my morning is spent working on design projects. As a jack of all trades, this can include a lot of things: graphic design, web design, creative copywriting, and social media planning. Whatever the client needs, I’m there to make it happen. Once 11 am rolls around, I’ll take a little break to grab a snack, walk the block, or just stare at something other than a computer screen.


I try to keep my mornings clear of meetings and save them for the afternoon. If any are scheduled, those take priority. On the other hand, if I don’t have any scheduled, I’ll reach out to clients to check that everything is running smoothly and there aren’t any issues. If the time allows, I’ll continue working on actual projects, but a lot of times these three hours are full of client communication.


UX/UI Design Bootcamp

12 weeks · part-time

Spend 12 weeks learning live from industry experts in a micro class. Learn-by-doing with practical case studies and publish your portfolio! 

Early Evening

It is easy for the hours to run together during the day, but I try to stay  focused on the clock. At around 2 pm, I made a shift from client communication to wrapping up project work and handling administrative duties. This means making sure that whatever project is in the works, is in a good place to sit overnight. I make sure I have all of my hours logged correctly and if it happens to be the end of the month, I’ll get invoices ready to send out.


You may have noticed that my ‘work day’ ends at 4 pm whereas it is more typical to work until 5 pm. This is a little shift I made in my schedule as it works best for me. I don’t take a traditional 1-hour lunch break during the day as it is not helpful to my workflow, it often makes me less motivated. Once I wrapped up working, I start getting dinner ready. I like to make a nutritious, homemade meal and enjoy it while reading or watching a show. After I eat, I will do some sort of outdoor activity, usually a walk, but sometimes just sitting in the sun will suffice. At around 7 pm, I’ll let the evening take me where it pleases. I may go out with friends, I may watch a movie, or I may go straight to bed.

Freelance work is beautiful and fulfilling but no doubt takes a lot of self-motivation and structure to be successful. When I first started as a freelancer, I did not set boundaries with the working hours, because I didn’t think I was allowed to. That was the most detrimental thing to my mental health and my business. Once I was able to ‘clock in’ and ‘clock out,’ I found so much more freedom in my life and my work was actually better!

Don’t get discouraged if the freelance workflow does not come easy to you. It’s messy, confusing, and out of the ordinary. But rest assured, you will succeed!