When a friend asked about my top book recommendations for freelancers, 6 books came to mind. These 6 books changed the way I do work. They helped me get organized, beat procrastination, and optimize my results by focusing on what really matters.

I’m confident that if you read them and take action it will significantly boost your freelancing business. The best part is that these tactics aren’t only applicable to freelancing, and will have multiple positive side effects in your personal life.

It may not be everyone’s first thought to focus on productivity when growing their business, but when your business is freelancing a lot depends on you. By bettering yourself and developing systems of organization you can count on, you’ll be amazed how much your business grows.

Without further ado, let’s dig in.

  1. Eat That Frog!

By: Brain Tracy

Eat That Frog! helped me conquer my inner procrastination with 21 easy to follow tactics. The format of the book is easy to follow and each tactic includes action steps you can implement immediately.

These simple techniques help with things like planning your goals, breaking them into smaller chunks, and applying the motivation to achieve them. If procrastination is something you struggle with, as most everyone does, this book will help you boost your freelancing productivity and focus on your most difficult and important work.

  1. 15 Secrets Successful People Know About Time Management

By: Kevin Kruse

Kruse presents you with time management hacks from real entrepreneurs and billionaires. I really like the rich examples in this book and the wealth of interviews the author uses to support his points.

One way this book helped me was to develop and implement a morning routine, which significantly improved my productivity each and every day. By adding these productivity hacks to your arsenal you’ll be able to accomplish so much more freelancing.

  1. The Power of Habit

By: Charles Duhigg

The Power of Habit was huge in helping me learn and follow a framework to replace bad habits with good habits. I used what I learned in this book to quit habits like eating junk food, trolling the internet, and lounging around during low points.

I made the change by doing a good habit in these situations where I used to do a bad habit. For example, when I felt down I would make myself go exercise. This resulted in me feeling better and over time it became almost automatic that I would go exercise whenever I felt unproductive or down.

The concept sounds simple but is rooted in the latest neuroscience and research. Duhigg did his homework in this book.

As a freelancer this book will help you overcome bad and unproductive habits which will make you more productive and effective. Additionally, you can use these techniques to make habits like doing freelance work and making sales part of your good habits. You’ll be amazed to find yourself doing these tasks almost automatically!

  1. The 80/20 Principle

By: Richard Koch

This book changed the way I work and think.

I used to give all of my tasks equal priority. The 80/20 principal opened my eyes to the benefit of first analyzing what actions I do that have the most impact, and spending the most time on those items. It’s about focused intention on what yields your biggest results, rather than just being busy.

This can improve your freelancing by helping you identify the 20% of activities you do that get you 80% of your results. By focusing on those items you can multiply your business results in the same amount of time you usually spend working. Whether you want to create more free time or grow your business and your sales, this is a must read.

  1. The One Thing

By: Gary Keller

To summarize what I gained from this book in one sentence: I learned the power of focusing on just one thing.

I used to be that guy with tons of ideas and when people asked me what I was working on I’d say “Oh, I’m working on this blog and this business idea, and this other side project, and this other side project.” Not surprisingly when you try to do everything you don’t do any of those things as good as you could.

Gary Keller helped me focus on just one thing and make that thing excellent. The book uses strong examples and ideas for how to go about this, ultimately making this another game changer for me.

Keller also emphasizes the power of saying no, and that changed my life. We don’t realize how important it is to say no to things until we’re behind on our business and stressed about taking on way too much.

The One Thing helps you change that.

I would highly recommend this one if you’re currently diverting your focus and trying to chase multiple rabbits. As the Japanese proverb goes, if you chase two rabbits, you will catch neither.

  1. Getting Things Done

By: David Allen

This popular title changed the way I organize my life and my work. I used to run on a combination of to-do lists and keeping tasks in my head. Not after Getting Things Done.

Now I use a white board to track my biggest goal, my calendar on my phone to keep all appointments, and a daily to-do list. Having an effective system of organization allowed me to clear my mind, stress less about forgetting things, and focus on my work.

If you don’t have a great system of organization, then I highly recommend this one. The time you invest upfront in building a system of organization will pay you back with dividends and interest

This book will help you manage your business more effectively, respond to your clients more promptly, have clearer focus, and reduce stress.