A few weeks back I celebrated the start of my 5:th year as a self-employed contractor. It’s been a wild ride and I kick myself on a regular basis for not getting into it earlier. One of the best aspects of being a contractor is that most of the rules and ceremony around being a salaried employee don’t apply to me, and in general I’m given way more flexibility than if I was employed directly by the customer.

After listening to an episode of Kodsnack with Lars Wikman, in which he talks about dedicating one day a week on working on his business (as opposed to working in his business), I couldn’t help but to feel the itch to do something similar. Thankfully, my client had no objections and as of two weeks I now work a 30 hour week, split up as four 7.5 hour days.

The reason for choosing the 4x7.5 approach is a) it gives me a whole day with fresh brainpower and b) let’s me follow a healthy work-life routine where I don’t feel drained at the end of the day. Both points have become more noticable the older I get.

What do I intend on doing with my new found day? Four things:

  • Learn - While I do a lot of development for my clients, they usually dictate the technology and a lot of time is spent in meetings. I want to use this day to try out new stuff, without the confiments of client requirements. That said, I also want to…
  • Ship - As far as possible, I try to make everything I learn public. Be it a launched website or a blog post, the goal of this day is to produce on unit of something. By shipping often I hope to build a toolbox, tricks and routines to be able to build something quickly when inspirations strikes.
  • Write - I’ve become terrible at writing. To get better, I want to write more.
  • Clean - Running a business means having a bunch of little chores to do. Stashing those in one place a discarding them in bulk means less stress during the rest of the week. Inbox zero is easy if you only clean it once a week.