Language translators can learn a lot from Jerry Seinfeld

Posted on Fri, May 31, 2013 @ 11:05 AM

language translatorsA successful translation business certainly hinges on the quality of our work, but equally important is making the time to increase our visibility. Building up a roster of steady clients takes time and without an online presence, it’ll take even longer. We know this.

We also know that increasing our online visibility means blogging, leaving comments on other language translation blogs, Tweeting, using Facebook and LinkedIn. But how do we find the time and energy to do all of this when we’re so busy trying to do our job: translate?

Language translators can learn a lot from Jerry Seinfeld

We recently discovered a productivity secret called “Don’t break the chain.” Strangely enough, we have to thank comedian Jerry Seinfeld for this one. Here’s how it works:

First, set your goal(s)—and make sure they are feasible. Write them down and hang the list in a prominent place on the wall. Next to your list of goals, you’ll hang a wall calendar.

Every day that you accomplish all of your goals you get to put a big X over that day on your calendar. If you are consistent, the Xs turn into a chain that continues to grow as long as you continue to meet your goals. The goal is never to break the chain.

Seeing this chain grow is rewarding; it feels good to flip through the pages and reflect on all of your progress. And once your chain is a few weeks long, you’ll notice that you are less tempted to cheat or skip a day.  

While we prefer hanging a hard copy calendar on the wall—there’s a satisfaction in taking a Sharpie and making dark hard lines on it at the end of the day—you can find a digital Don’t-Break-the-Chain Calendar here.

If you’re looking for a few more productivity tips for language translators, check out two of our other blogs, 5 Time Management Tips Every Freelance Translator Should Know and 10 Networking Tips for the Freelance Translator.

Photo Credit: Alan Light


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Topics: Modern Language Translation, Translation and interpretation studies, time management tips for translators, Translation Classes Online, translation business

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