When you freelance, you are your boss. You have the freedom to work whenever and wherever you want. But this freedom can also be a double-edged sword, especially when maintaining a work-life balance.
Without the right work-life balance, you could easily find yourself working too much and not having enough time for yourself. Setting boundaries, establishing a schedule, and taking time off are critical aspects of maintaining a healthy work-life balance as a freelancer. Here are six things I wish I had known about striving for work-life balance when I started freelancing over two years ago.
The first thing I wish I had known when I started freelancing was how to set boundaries between work and leisure. Without limitations, it can be easy to slip into the trap of always working and never taking a break. This can lead to burnout and decreased productivity. But you don’t want to have so much downtime, either.
Setting boundaries will help you stay motivated and productive and keep you from getting overwhelmed. One way to do this is to create a designated workspace. It enables you to make a mental distinction between work and leisure time. Whenever you are in your workspace, you should be focused on work. When you leave it, you should be focused on relaxing activities. Set a time limit to keep you from overworking yourself.
Establishing a schedule
Another thing I wish I had known about setting time limits was the importance of establishing a schedule. It goes a long way in staying organized.
When creating your schedule, block off time for yourself. This could be time for a hobby, relaxation, or self-care. This is valuable time you should use to recharge and refocus. It’s also essential to block off time for administrative and marketing tasks.
Taking time off
The third thing I wish I had known was the value of taking time off for yourself. Doing so is critical to your mental and physical health.
Before you take time off, ensure that you plan so you can make the most out of your much-deserved break. Do something that you enjoy.
The next thing I wish I had known was the value of outsourcing tasks. It helps you save time and, more importantly, free up more time for yourself.
When outsourcing, finding the right people for the job is crucial. You want to make sure the people you hire are reliable and trustworthy. Ensure that the tasks you outsource are those you don’t have the time or energy to do yourself.
The fifth I wish I had known when I started freelancing was the importance of leveraging technology to maximize productivity. Whether you need to manage your tasks, brainstorm creative ideas, or automate your business processes, technology can be of great help.
Choose the right tools and apps. Make sure they are reliable, accessible, and simple to use. You could use task management software to keep track of your to-do’s and goals. Or you could use a time tracker to monitor your hours spent on each project.
Creating a support system
Finally, having a supportive network of family and friends can be invaluable. Find people who understand what you’re going through and can offer advice and encouragement. And make sure your support system is diverse. This could include mentors, colleagues, and even clients.