19 June 2011

Working Weekends

For freelance writers, not writing means not making money. It's like the dentists' adage "if you ain't drillin', you ain't billin'." If I don't sit down and actually put words on my computer screen, I'm not going to get paid.

There is an upside, though. The more I write, the more I get paid. The more time I devote to my clients and to finding new clients, the higher the financial reward.

However, that can be a dangerous thing. As a freelancer, it can be tempting to work all the time to be able to boost income, especially during times when clients and projects are plentiful. So why not work over a weekend to get a few extra articles done? Why not put in a full day on the weekends to boost your income?

Everyone needs time off every so often. You need time to recharge your mind (and spirit), spend time with family and friends, maybe even take a shower once in a while. But if you need to work weekends, perhaps for your budget, there are ways you can make them a little more restful.

Take frequent breaks. You should do this anyway, but if you're working on a day you normally have off, or you've been working a lot lately, taking frequent breaks will help. Get up and walk around (refill your water glass!), stretch your muscles, whatever you need to do.

Do different work. Instead of writing, take your weekends to do research or interviews. Catch up on your emails. Make phone calls. Do administrative work like billing or filing. This gives you a break from actual writing, but you're still getting work done.

Work shorter hours. If you can, try working a half day (or less). That way you can still get some time off over the weekend.

Work different hours. If you normally work early in the morning, take the weekend to sleep in a bit and start later in the day. This will make the day seem different which can be restful in itself.

Everyone should take at least one day off a week. Give yourself a break! But if you have to work weekends, do what you can to make the days restful so you don't burn yourself out. Now if you'll excuse me, I'm going to go put my feet up for a bit.

Have a great rest of the weekend!

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