I’ve been a free lance web designer for five years now and as much as I enjoy waking up in the morning, eating some breakfast, turning on my computer and start working while still in my pajamas I’ve learned it’s not the best work environment or way to get projects done.
Personal life vs. Free lance life
It’s relaxing, but I still have the mindset of being home and even though I’m working I have all my personal life around me. Free lancing and personal life have always been a struggle for me to keep separate. I enjoy working so much that when my day of work is supposed to be over and I should be out doing other, non-work related things, I find myself finishing up something that I could wait until tomorrow to do; especially if I’ve been at home all day working. Projects just tend to take longer too because of all the other personal interests I find myself doing while in the middle of a work project.
Make believe your going into an office if you don’t otherwise have one to go too…
If you don’t have somewhere else to go to, such as an office, the least I can suggest is getting ready as if you were going to go somewhere else to work; and possible have your workstation somewhere where you don’t often go when you’re not “clocked in”. Places such as coffee shops also work much better then staying at home, and you have the chance of meeting people which ultimately has been somewhat of a challenge for me. The less I communicate with people, because of the job I have, the less I overall would like to communicate with people. Having the human interaction day-to-day as a free lancer is very important if you don’t otherwise see clients daily.
Take breaks… often
It’s easy to find yourself at the computer for hours without realizing it’s been that long, also long sessions at a computer might slow down efficiency. I’ve learned to get up at least every two hours to take a walk around the office or my house. Possibly do a quick errand or some task that gets me away from the computer for 15 minutes. This is important not only for efficiency but for what being at a computer will slowly do to our wrists, back, neck and other parts of our bodies that don’t do well with long periods of sitting.