It can be just as easy, if not easier, to place too much emphasis on your work when you’re working in the freelance copywriting field as in the traditional job market. It is important, therefore, to learn how to keep yourself from going crazy when it comes to your freelance career.
Set Boundaries in Terms of Hours
Although the nature of the freelancing business demands that we be available at odd times, it is important to set some loose boundaries. For example, decide what hours you prefer to work, then let your friends and family know that you are off limits during those hours — with the exception of emergencies, of course. Once you have your set hours, try to limit your work to those hours, when possible. I know this is easier said than done but, to not lose your mind, you have to have some sort of quitting time, otherwise your work overruns your entire life.
Understand the Ebb and Flows of the Industry
As you know, if you have been a freelancer for any length of time, work loads ebb and flow. Sometimes, you will have more work than you can fit into your day, and other times you will not have anything to do for days in a row. Because this is a fact in regards to the writing business, it’s important that you remember it when things are slow. Don’t drive yourself crazy trying to get work when there is none to be had. Remember: it will pick up again. Use this time to perfect your portfolio, reach out to new clients, work on marketing, or complete other unrelated projects. Remember: it is not time to panic or go crazy with worry.
Prepare for the Slow Times by Planning Ahead
To keep you from losing your mind — and your car and other possessions –, you must prepare financially for the slumps that you will have in the writing industry. This is a difficult task when you are new to the business, but eventually, you will begin to notice trends in terms of your workload, allowing you to predict what you usually make a month. When you go over that amount, on a good month, set some money aside for when the slow months come, so you have the money to pay the bills even when you don’t have enough work coming in.
A writing career can take over your life just as easy as any other career. In fact, since you are pretty much self-governing as a freelancer and often work from home, it can be even more challenging to limit the amount of time you put into work. Remember, working hard is not the issue — having your life revolve around that work is the problem. Hard work has its place and its worth; just don’t let your work become more important than your sanity and you’ll be just fine.
Brandie P is a freelance writer who enjoys setting her own hours and spending time with her family. She is blessed with a wonderful husband and two healthy, happy kiddos.