Pages in topic:   < [1 2 3 4] >
Poll: How do you keep awake when doing a "must be on our desk first thing in the morning translation?"
Thread poster: ProZ.com Staff

Reed James
Chile
Local time: 22:33
Member (2005)
Spanish to English
Why bother with this sort of translation? Mar 9, 2007

I said that I refuse to accept this type of job. I have gone down that long, sleepless road, and it is just not worth it. I am definitely a morning person, and my performance simply goes downhill after 21:00. I also have a wife and two children, who obviously have daytime schedules. Why would I want to compromise my family time to complete a job when I would rather be with them and then sleeping?

I have two solutions to this "interminable translation" scenario: I accept regular,
... See more
I said that I refuse to accept this type of job. I have gone down that long, sleepless road, and it is just not worth it. I am definitely a morning person, and my performance simply goes downhill after 21:00. I also have a wife and two children, who obviously have daytime schedules. Why would I want to compromise my family time to complete a job when I would rather be with them and then sleeping?

I have two solutions to this "interminable translation" scenario: I accept regular, short to mid-sized jobs, and I also try to work within the same time zone, or be a few hours ahead of the client.
Collapse


 

ViktoriaG  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 20:33
English to French
+ ...
It's sport Mar 9, 2007

I refuse such jobs, but it happens sometimes that I have several ongoing projects with very comfortable deadlines. It sometimes happens with such jobs that there is a development requiring immediate action - for both jobs on the same day. I have, for example, to proofread 16,000 words (let's say 8,000 x 2 jobs), which can't be done in a normal day of work. So, I make sure all else was taken care of to make sure I will not be bothered by other stuff, and off I go working the night away.
... See more
I refuse such jobs, but it happens sometimes that I have several ongoing projects with very comfortable deadlines. It sometimes happens with such jobs that there is a development requiring immediate action - for both jobs on the same day. I have, for example, to proofread 16,000 words (let's say 8,000 x 2 jobs), which can't be done in a normal day of work. So, I make sure all else was taken care of to make sure I will not be bothered by other stuff, and off I go working the night away.

I consider such translation jobs a sport, and therefore, my approach resembles a mountain climber's approach. Eat well (not too much at once as that can slow you down), hydrate (lots of water and it also gives you an excuse to get up off your butt and visit the bathroom, which helps your circulation) and move around (I sometimes go outside and walk for just five minutes).

What not to do: listen to music or have the TV on, get comfy on a sofa with your laptop and get interrupted or try to also do other things at once.

With tiresome jobs like this, your brain can get really tired fast, especially if you're stressed out, so make sure you can concentrate on work and not lose too much time. Keeping productive is a must in such a situation. If the job drags on, after a while, your brain is not as sharp, so the sooner you finish, the better. And this is where snacks and water can help a lot.
Collapse


 

Jennifer Forbes  Identity Verified
Local time: 01:33
Member (2006)
French to English
+ ...
I set myself targets, too Mar 9, 2007

JaneTranslates wrote:

It helps that I'm a "night person" who regularly works until 2:00 am, but I have some little tricks for those occasional all-nighters.

1) I "treat" myself, allowing myself to drink Diet Pepsi all night instead of water. Is it the caffeine, or just fact that I like the stuff?

2) I make a game of charting my progress, with the incentive that beating my schedule ("be on page 17 by 3:30 am") buys me some sleep time.

3) I make sure that the following day has a block of time when I can nap. Usually, I end up emailing the job by 6 or 7 am and sleeping till noon, at least.

4) If it's a particularly stressful situation, I plan a reward (in addition to sleep!) that I will give myself within 24 hours of finishing the job: an hour at the beach, or a small splurge of online shopping, for instance.

5) When I'm really, really tempted to give it up and fall into bed, I set my timer for 2 minutes, close my eyes, lean back in my chair, and pray for strength to keep going. The timer is back-up in case I fall asleep, but I almost always open my eyes before the time is up and feel refreshed.


I set myself targets, too - after each page, perhaps, I calculate how much remains to be done - what percentage is left - and how much I've earned so far.
I also go out for a walk along the promenade by the sea, if fine, or have a break to play computer solitaire.
I don't work all night, though, but prefer to get up early in the morning before the phone starts ringing. I can get so much more done then.
Regards,
Jenny.


Whenever I'm working, day or night, I set my timer to 50 minutes (70 as the upper limit in extreme crunches) and get up and walk around for a few minutes before starting another session.


[Edited at 2007-03-09 15:55]


 

Nesrin  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 01:33
English to Arabic
+ ...
A 20 minute power nap after midnight Mar 9, 2007

That keeps me going till 3 am or so. Probably longer than that even, but I have to force myself to be in bed by 3 am, otherwise waking up at 7 am to get the kids to school is pure torture.

Also: Moving about from time to time.


 

Mundi
Local time: 02:33
French to English
+ ...
Chocolate !!! Mar 9, 2007

I treat myself to some chocolate several times during the night. That keeps my anxiety levels low and it also keeps me awake.

 

Andrea Riffo  Identity Verified
Chile
Local time: 22:33
English to Spanish
I usually decline... Mar 9, 2007

But there are times when:

a) I cannot afford to say no (in plain terms: I need the money)

b) I have had a reasonable deadline but something else got in the way (sickness, plumbing problems... sick cat, et al.) and I'm stuck at the last minute.

c) I have a reasonable deadline, get a request for another project with a resonable deadline from a first-time customer, get yet another one with a not-so-reasonable deadline from a semi-regular client..
... See more
But there are times when:

a) I cannot afford to say no (in plain terms: I need the money)

b) I have had a reasonable deadline but something else got in the way (sickness, plumbing problems... sick cat, et al.) and I'm stuck at the last minute.

c) I have a reasonable deadline, get a request for another project with a resonable deadline from a first-time customer, get yet another one with a not-so-reasonable deadline from a semi-regular client... and it adds up.[**]



In those occasions, I:

JaneTranslates wrote:

3) I make sure that the following day has a block of time when I can nap. Usually, I end up emailing the job by 6 or 7 am and sleeping till noon, at least.



and drink lots and lots of coffee.


John Cutler wrote:

It might sound radical but a nice glass of diet Coke liberally laced with coffee and lemon is my favorite solution. It's called a "trucker's special". It does the trick everytime!!



Sounds like I'll give it a try next time




[**]One of my goals for this year is to somehow manage to get a steady, regular workflow in order to stop having 2 crazy weeks followed by 2 weeks staring at the screen ::yawn::
Collapse


 

Tomás Cano Binder, BA, CT  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 02:33
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Not my cup of tea... Mar 9, 2007

I am lucky enough that our customers are reasonable people. They don't expect us to be working all night. Night is for sleeping, and it would not be fair to be awake all night for one customer and feel miserable and dumb the day after, when other customers need our help.

 

Marcus Malabad  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 02:33
German to English
+ ...
Red Bull Mar 9, 2007

two magic words: Red Bull. It's got a dose of caffeine (and I hate coffee!) that keeps me alert for hours. Two cans a day is the recommended dose...but I usually take three...ok, five sometimes.

But like Nikki, I'd rather say no to projects that will steal my valuable hours of sleep. If it's a major client, I'll sacrifice a night's sleep once or twice a week. So that's when I pop that can. Lately, however, I say no, if they insist, I up the ante and double/triple my rates...and some
... See more
two magic words: Red Bull. It's got a dose of caffeine (and I hate coffee!) that keeps me alert for hours. Two cans a day is the recommended dose...but I usually take three...ok, five sometimes.

But like Nikki, I'd rather say no to projects that will steal my valuable hours of sleep. If it's a major client, I'll sacrifice a night's sleep once or twice a week. So that's when I pop that can. Lately, however, I say no, if they insist, I up the ante and double/triple my rates...and some say yes, so I can't really complain. I can catch up on my sleep another day.

[Edited at 2007-03-09 17:32]
Collapse


 

Philippe Etienne  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 02:33
Member
English to French
Red Bull+coffee+cold water splashes Mar 9, 2007

I also don't take this kind of jobs (unless my extra fee of +50% is accepted), but sometimes I have to work at nights for various reasons, if only to have an extra day off during the working week after a last-minute change of plan.
I did it last Friday to shove work away and have a chance to go on a extended WE with some paragliders south of Marrakech in the Atlas mountains: slept 3 hours Thursday night, woke up at 3am, worked until 7.40am, sent the job, loaded the car, left at 8.10am, dr
... See more
I also don't take this kind of jobs (unless my extra fee of +50% is accepted), but sometimes I have to work at nights for various reasons, if only to have an extra day off during the working week after a last-minute change of plan.
I did it last Friday to shove work away and have a chance to go on a extended WE with some paragliders south of Marrakech in the Atlas mountains: slept 3 hours Thursday night, woke up at 3am, worked until 7.40am, sent the job, loaded the car, left at 8.10am, drove all the way to the spot (a 5-hour drive, including a rough trail up the moutain in my 307 SW, the underside hitting rocks all the way up...).
I turned down a tandem flight, because by then I could no longer make the difference between my front and my backside...
Collapse


 

Henry Hinds  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 18:33
English to Spanish
+ ...
In memoriam
Coffee & Money Mar 9, 2007

I drink a lot of coffee but that's not really what keeps me going. It's the thought of the money I will make.

Such a situation has not appeared for quite a while, but if it does, the price will reflect the sacrifice. Of that you may be sure.


 

Sanmar
United Kingdom
Local time: 01:33
English to Dutch
+ ...
Ginseng extract Mar 9, 2007

I do not usually work at night but I find Ginseng Extract a great help when I get mentally tired after many hours translating. Ginseng extract gives a quick energy boost, helps with concentration and makes me more 'stress-resistant'. All this without any "pay-back" (such as feeling drained later, etc.).

 

Steven Capsuto  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 20:33
Member (2004)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Protein and low amounts of caffeine Mar 9, 2007

I don't mind working at night on occasions as long as I can catch up on sleep in the morning.

I find that anything with lots of protein and some salt (peanuts, some types of protein bars, etc.) plus a little caffeine (Snapple's lemon or peach iced tea usually) can keep me alert.

I rarely have caffeine of any sort, so it doesn't take much of the stuff to keep me awake. I'm one of those people who gets "wired" on decaf coffee. But without the protein, my concentration and
... See more
I don't mind working at night on occasions as long as I can catch up on sleep in the morning.

I find that anything with lots of protein and some salt (peanuts, some types of protein bars, etc.) plus a little caffeine (Snapple's lemon or peach iced tea usually) can keep me alert.

I rarely have caffeine of any sort, so it doesn't take much of the stuff to keep me awake. I'm one of those people who gets "wired" on decaf coffee. But without the protein, my concentration and work quality start to slide.
Collapse


 

megane_wang  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 02:33
English to Spanish
+ ...
Zero / Diet Coke and Chocolate Mar 9, 2007

But I never mix them up (yuk!).

But now that I'm a grown up responsible woman with a 20 month old baby I tend to say no... !!

He's sleeping now. Can you imagine what I am doig in front of my computer?

Cheers.....


 

Pamela Peralta  Identity Verified
Peru
Local time: 20:33
English to Spanish
+ ...
Power naps Mar 9, 2007

I clicked on "other". I always refuse overnight jobs, but if I want to gain some time to have a long weekend, for example, I take a one hour nap in the afternoons. That's about the only thing that helps my system. Forget about coffee or tea or red bulls

 

Giovany Rodríguez Monsalve
Colombia
Local time: 20:33
English to Spanish
+ ...
Coffee. Mar 9, 2007

I good cup of Colombian Coffee (the best of the world).:D

 
Pages in topic:   < [1 2 3 4] >


To report site rules violations or get help, contact a site moderator:

Moderator(s) of this forum
Jared Tabor[Call to this topic]

You can also contact site staff by submitting a support request »

Poll: How do you keep awake when doing a "must be on our desk first thing in the morning translation?"

Advanced search






WordFinder Unlimited
For clarity and excellence

WordFinder is the leading dictionary service that gives you the words you want anywhere, anytime. Access 260+ dictionaries from the world's leading dictionary publishers in virtually any device. Find the right word anywhere, anytime - online or offline.

More info »
TM-Town
Manage your TMs and Terms ... and boost your translation business

Are you ready for something fresh in the industry? TM-Town is a unique new site for you -- the freelance translator -- to store, manage and share translation memories (TMs) and glossaries...and potentially meet new clients on the basis of your prior work.

More info »



Forums
  • All of ProZ.com
  • Term search
  • Jobs
  • Forums
  • Multiple search