Stopping to Smell the Roses: When is Enough, Enough for Article Writers?
How often do we as content writers work long hours into the night? It is a drive – an obsession – to get one more article, write one more line, finish one more assignment and then go read reviews, forums and search for more projects.
Just One More
The first step to recovery is admitting you have a problem…
It really does become an addiction of sorts; knowing you have the potential to earn more or less can turn into a drive that will make you crazy. It’s hard to count the number of writers in the forums who describe how hard it is to stop and take a break – always wondering if there is something else you could pick up and work on.
I’m not in this world to live up to your expectations and you’re not in this world to live up to mine. – Bruce Lee
The first step to becoming a successful (but less-frazzled) writer is to set daily goals for yourself. Realize that starting out with small goals is ideal for a beginning writer, since it takes time to build up clients and assignments. Beginning goals might include:
- Submitting an application
- Passing assessment tests
- Educating yourself on writing techniques and standards
- Filling out casting calls and applying for jobs
- Accepting small-paying assignments that will lead to a higher raking or better rating
Initial goals will have less to do with dollar signs and more to do with getting further in your professional career as a freelance writer. You will need to build up your clientele and reputation if you are going to get far in this industry. It is important to take beginning assignments slowly and follow all directions and deadlines so you don’t start off on the wrong foot.
After you’ve gotten into the swing of things, consider how much work you have available and what is realistic for you to accomplish in a day. Your goals might start off based on bills or spending money, but they might increase later because you find you are able to easily meet your daily goals.
Look out for the goals that will cause you to spend every free and waking moment writing or cause you to produce sub-standard work. Don’t forget to set goals that include the things you care most about: family, friends, health and happiness. The life of a writer still has to be a life worth living.
Article Writers’ Minute to Win It
I used to be a classic workaholic, and after seeing how little work and career really mean when you reach the end of your life, I put a new emphasis on things I believe count more. These things include: family, friends, being part of a community, and appreciating the little joys of the average day.
– Mitch Albom
Structure your day with breaks and goals; make sure you are accomplishing the important things in life. While your career is important for funding a successful lifestyle, your family and friends are the lasting and memorable relationships that you should focus most on building.
Your work day should be packed full of efficient tasks that will help you create a successful career. Don’t let your career suffer because of poor planning – and don’t make your relationships or personal health suffer because of work.
Alethea M is a corporate blogging guru and freelance writer for WriterAccess. She often uses interesting facts from her article research to impress friends at dinner parties. Her husband is her biggest fan — though this may be because her writing income allows her to share in bill-paying each month.