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Freelancers have more pressure to perform than their salaried counterparts. When a freelancer is not working, they are not earning. Additionally, self-employed people in the United States have to pay twice the normal amount to Social Security, meaning you have to earn a higher gross pay to equal the same net pay as your salaried colleagues. This tends to turn freelancers into workaholics. However, regular breaks from your work will improve productivity. These tips will help you to escape work when you work at home.
Break Your Workaholism Using These Tips
- Go outside for fresh air, sunshine and physical exercise: Your body needs at least 20 minutes of sunshine to absorb vitamin D. Take a sandwich to a nearby park, walk the dog or work in the garden. If it’s a warm, summer day, then go for a dip in the pool.
- Play some music: If you are trying to loose weight, then dance to the music. If you feel stressed, then play soothing music while you meditate about the good things in your life. Relax in a beach chair on the patio, to work on a perfect suntan while meditating and listening to music.
- Plan a weekend away: If you are not tied to a Monday through Friday schedule, then take advantage of mid-week discounts at campgrounds, hotels and resorts. Participating in new activities is exciting and will recharge your psyche.
- Set aside one morning every week to visit a local attraction: County and state parks have nature walks, canoeing, fishing, and historical tours if you visit places such as Gettysburg. Museums and other local attractions might have a free or discounted day, so you can enjoy an escape from work, and from the house, without spending much money.
- Visit a friend or family member who lives nearby: Face-to-face interaction is more stimulating than typing a conversation on Facebook. If your friend works at a brick and mortar job, then arrange to meet for lunch.
- Participate in a sport: If you are not in great physical shape, then choose bowling, volleyball or one of the other less strenuous sports. Play is just as important for adults as it is for kids.
- Choose a hobby that you have always wanted to do: Ideas include model rocketry, oil painting, sketching, ceramics, woodworking, photography, knit or crochet, dance, musical instruments, rock collecting, billiards, darts and metal detecting. Hobbies add enjoyment to life, in addition to giving you an escape from work.
- Take a class at the community college: If you would like to meet colleagues, then choose a class in your field of interest. Many classes meet only once or twice a week for one hour, yet the exchange of ideas might help to advance your business.
These are just some of the ideas to escape work and rejuvenate your energy. Schedule some recreational and educational activities as part of your normal workday. One system that might work for you is working for one hour and then taking a 10-15 minute break. Other freelancers prefer to finish a section of a project and then take a break. After all, flexibility is one of the great benefits of freelancing!
If you find that work is always piling up, then start timing how many minutes you work on each activity. Reduce the amount of time you read the news, blogs, answer email or chat on Twitter or Facebook. Organise the workday so your most alert hours are spent earning money. Schedule non-earning activities for those times when you have more difficulty concentrating. This is your brain telling you to escape work and go play.
Andy often works at home or from a nearby coffee shop. He is the co-founder of one of Australia’s top credit card comparison websites. Visit their website where you can find more of his writing.