Being a freelance home – based professional can be very rewarding and very freeing. It can also be very scary and very challenging. Before you jump in to the world of freelance work with both feet, take a minute to look at this list of some common problems faced by freelance professionals. Don’t worry, I would not just toss you a list of problems to be aware of and wish you luck in avoiding them. Ideas for how you can avoid these problems are right here alongside them so that you and other freelancers who may be going through tough times can send those problems packing.
Lack of boundaries can frustrate both the home – based freelance professional as well as his or her family and friends. If you do not draw a line between the time when you are on the clock for work (and thus unavailable for other things) and the time when you are not working, you can not expect other people to magically know when you are busy and when you are available. Having clear boundaries between work and home, such as having a specific area that you go to to do your work, lets others know that you are busy.
While you may think that as a freelancer you will have unlimited freedom to do whatever you want whenever you want, this is not what generally happens. Freelancers who succeed at earning a living doing freelance work set regular work hours and stick to them. This is not the total buzzkill that it seems to be. After all, you are free to set that schedule however you like. For example, in order to be able to be a stay at home mom, I have scheduled my work hours for after the kids are in bed. If I were young, single, had no kids, and lived near a beach, I could set my hours for the afternoon so that I could go to the beach every morning to go surfing. My point is that it does not matter what the schedule is, only that you have one and that you stick to it.
Tomorrow, I’ll discuss three more potential pitfalls that could affect your freelance career as well as some smart strategies for avoiding them.
Photo by alvimann on morguefile.com.