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Three Ways to Tackle Freelance Isolation

LifeAsFreelancerWe’ve been so focused lately on office dynamics that we don’t want to overlook our freelance friends. Yes, entrepreneurs — we’re talking to you.

Inspired by this piece on Freelancers Union, there are a few ways to fend off the isolation blues. Sure, we know how liberating it is to make our own schedules and have the ability to work from anywhere but there are ways to overcome the drawbacks of feeling lonely and oh-so-isolate.

1. Create structure. When your day has a purpose from the minute you wake up and it’s full of meetings, phone calls and a work schedule on a calendar similar to how you would schedule a meeting, it’s easier to squash loneliness. Even if you schedule specific times during the day (perhaps when you’re least productive) to run to the dry cleaners or grab a bite to eat for lunch, you’ll stay occupied. Plus, it’s important to get fresh air so be sure to schedule that as well.

And once you determine your most productive hours such as the first thing in the morning, tackle the most important tasks first. If you have phone interviews to conduct, try to schedule them later on when your less productive and you can leave the less intense activities like invoicing for later on when you hit the afternoon slump.

2. Work out. This includes your mind, too! You don’t need a two-hour workout to feel accomplished and give your mind and body a tune up. Rather, per the piece, you can simply take 10 minutes to do simple stretches or meditate.

3. Make time for friends. Be social! It’s too easy to get sucked into the spiral of the day. The next thing you know it’s 5 p.m. and you still haven’t pitched new ideas to potential clients. If you’re focused so much on work and don’t shut it off, you may be risk burning out or the inability to let your mind be free and at its most creative. In other words, stay social. No matter how much work you want to accomplish, chances are there still won’t be enough hours in the day to get it all done. Therefore, make time to keep interpersonal relationships blooming!

The piece suggests:

“Whether you meet a friend for lunch, call your dad, go to a meet-up or networking event, supplementing your regular e-mail and IM chats with real face-to-face meetings or phone conversations is a great way to stay social while working from home.”

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