You did all that in your first playthrough ? Wow!
Would you care for some tips ?
Actually I have a question too, you know that girl who stays next to Stern taking quests ? Is she the one that raises your popularity ?
Etsy gives out the general assignments that raise your popularity. She's at the front desk of the palace. Character-specifc popularity is raised by taking jobs from those characters, which is actually kind of a pain because you have to wander all over town to find them...
My general advice is to go after low-hanging fruit. Which is to say, you don't lose anything by not accepting a job, only by accepting a job and not completing it. Build up a stock of items in your container and look for jobs you can satisfy right away. (If you don't remember exactly what's in your container use the 'contemplate' option on the job. Rorona will note if she has enough already.)
Also, abuse the heck out of shops. Early on there are a few item types requested that can just be purchased at a shop and then turned it for a profit
. Not a large profit, but it doesn't matter. If you complete a job that means another will be available soon. Sometimes it's even the same type. Later on when you unlock the option to register things you've synthesized in shops (meaning you can just buy additional copies of that item instead of wasting time synthesizing it again) this becomes even more effective.
Constantly check for new jobs. Whenever time passes new jobs can become available. Check early and often. As mentioned this can be a pain for the character requests because they're scattered all over.
Don't ever rest. Well, maybe during the first request when you still don't have much money. But in general it's better to just buy food/healing items than to waste your time resting. Also, whenever you go out to gather ingredients you actually recover some HP during the travel time to/from the location, so if you alternate synthesizing and gathering you can keep your HP pretty steady without items.
Of course bring a healer along when gathering (Iksel or Lionela). And don't have too many jobs hanging so you have time to explore, especially later in the game when the travel times to/from some of the locations are quite significant.