This article was contributed by Severine Menem, Nutritional Coach and Therapist.
Being a freelancer is an amazing opportunity to choose your projects and lead the lifestyle you want. However, it is not an easy choice and it can be hard work. The best way to make the most of it is to learn how to make it work for you. And one of the most important aspects of enjoying being a freelancer is to have a good stress management system. Here are my top 7 tips:
Stay on schedule.
Just like in any other work, you have deadlines. But because you are not ‘at the office’, it is easy to lose track of time and miss important milestones. The best way to prevent it from happening is to create a special ‘work calendar’ and add not only the deadline but also all the milestones to help reach the deadlines. Update the calendar at the end of each day so that you know exactly what to do at the start of the next working day.
Make your clients happy
Make sure you understand exactly what the client is expecting from you, including the expectations he isn’t aware of, so that you can under-promise and over deliver. This is a great way to impress a client and get recurring business. At the same time, always remember that you can’t please everyone and this has nothing to do with you.
Manage clients’ expectations
Just as important is to manage the clients’ expectations. The best way is to agree on a set of rules regarding the best way to get in touch, provide updates, due dates, pay schedules before the start of the project. If everything is set from the beginning it is easier to concentrate on providing the best service.
People often underestimate the power of breaks. A study showed that having just a 5-minute break every hour doing a brisk walk is better at improving productivity than taking an hour during a whole day of work. It may seem counterproductive, but if you give it a try you may be surprised.
Learn to say no
This is a difficult one, turning down a job when you need one. But accepting something that deep-down you don’t want to do, whatever the reason, may end up costing you more time, energy and stress than working on getting the next job.
Develop a niche
Nothing is easier than working on your niche. You know the area well and as such it doesn’t take you long to get things done to perfection. Also, specialising means that you quickly build a reputation, which makes it easy to get more work.
Eat and sleep well
Being a freelancer means that you can have a healthy lifestyle: having a balanced diet in addition to sleeping well and enough will help you manage any stress that would arise from your freelancer status. Take advantage of the opportunity to make things right and set new positive lifestyle habits.
‘Severine Menem is a Nutritional Therapist and Health Coach that specializes in gastrointestinal health and weight management. For further information please get in touch: firstname.lastname@example.org’.