In your relationship with your freelance writing career, you are the decider. That means you are boss. You tell yourself when you can leave for a coffee break, take some time off to go run a few miles or swim a lap at the gym, or fit in a game of racquetball with your buddies at the Y.
As a freelancer, no one is going to tell you how to do snot. But you must be able to organize your life (and your time) in such a way where you can be who you are, as well as be true to all your professional obligations as a freelancer. This means being able to make time for priorities–like kids, mowing the lawn, riding your bike, and taking out the garbage–all the little things that make life what it is.
So how do you do this? Well, as a freelancer, you have to prioritize. Let’s say you have a couple small writing jobs on the side but you’re not sure where to fit them in. Meanwhile, you are writing a major project which has no firm deadline, but a big paycheck is waiting at the end of the rainbow. So what do you do? Do you work tirelessly from morn till night on the big project, and let the small projects slide? Or, do you try to accomplish some of the larger project, and work on the smaller projects on your free time?
I prefer the second option. Now, there are some writers out there who might say, “Are you crazy? I would get the big project done first.” If you know how to avoid distractions as a freelancer, that would help you immensely.
Everyone is different; the key is being flexible.