Join the VIPs to receive FREE blogging tips & support

<p>Congrats! You're in!</p>

Freelancers! How to strike gold in your work/life balance

I have been asked by Hiive to share some tips on how to achieve the sometimes elusive work/life balance.  Hiive is a professional networking site for people working in creative roles. The platform allows you to promote yourself, collaborate with others, access courses and find work.

How to stike gold in your Work life balance

Until recently, the work/life balance is something I have struggled greatly with.  If I am honest, it is still work in progress but, over the past few weeks, I have begun to implement some new ways of working that have really started to pay off and have moved me closer to the sweet spot.

  • You are not superwoman (or man!) –Be realistic about the amount of work you can take on at any one time and the amount you can get done in a day.  I am often guilty of thinking I can do an infinite amount of work and usually nearly kill myself trying.  Just realising that you are not super human, and you have limits, just like everyone else can take the pressure off. There are projects that you don’t need to do; have the confidence to turn opportunities down if they aren’t exactly what you want; other opportunities will come along.
  • Set boundaries – Be strict with yourself.  Being a freelancer, especially if you work from home, means that you don’t have a clocking off time.  There is no caretaker  waiting to lock the office, so you can work whenever you want.  This is seen as a bonus by many freelancers but it actually means we don’t clock off; we can just do a little bit of work here and there and never really stop.  So find some boundaries that you are happy with.  It might be that you don’t want to work at the weekend, or past a certain time in the evening.  Whatever it is, set your boundary and stick to it.  Be your own caretaker.
  • Have your own work space –This is a new one for me, but until recently I worked on the couch, balancing the computer on the arm.  I have created my own little office in the corner of the living room and the resulting change was amazing.  I feel more organised, more professional and more able to step away from work if I want to.
  • Detailed to-do list – If like me, you tend to take on too many projects, then I think you can run the risk of being ineffective when we think we are being effective. I have a habit of being all over everything, people think I am organised (and compared to some I am), but I know I could be way more organised.  I spread myself too thin and dip in and out of things constantly.  To avoid this write a to-do list, but make sure it is detailed.  You could organise in priority order or in time taken to complete task. Then focus on it and tick things off.  When you feel distracted by another task, stick to the list.
  • Set a timer for certain tasks / Time blocking –Certain things we do in our working lives can be time sinks.  Email can be one of them, we can spend much more time responding than we intend to, dipping in and out all day.  So decide to check them at a couple of times a day and stick to your allocated time.
  • Focus on a single task at one timeThe One Thing by Gary Keller is a number 1 Amazon best seller, focuses on the best way to achieve and be successful is to focus on one thing.  

If you chase two rabbits you will not catch eitherone

  • Switch off – I am not going to tell you to turn your phones off for the whole weekend, as that is probably unrealistic.  However, you should have some family time away from the distractions of technology, not just for your family, but also for yourself.  So think about what you could cope with and again stick to it.  You have to manage yourself and that includes learning to make yourself stop and switch off.
  • Find something else you are passionate about– I am sure that you are passionate about your family, but I think it is a great balancer to find a hobby that you love as much as you love your work.  Something that you will look forward to doing.  Something that you won’t mind finishing work to go and do.
  • Don’t beat yourself up if at times an imbalance occurs – There are times when things will get hectic, either in your work life or personal life and any balance that you have managed to achieve with be threatened.  So when these times come knocking, just give yourself a break and don’t feel bad that things become briefly unbalanced; you have done it once you can do it again.

Are you a freelancer?  Do you have any tips for maintaining a good work life balance?

Remember to have a look at Hiive and see how they can help you achieve more in your creative life.

 

Let's Talk Mommy

Brilliant blog posts on HonestMum.com

Join the VIPs for free help & support

Make your blogging dreams come true

Congratulations! You're in!

Showing 33 comments
  • Mummy Fever
    Reply

    Thanks again Aby – the work space is an issue for me as i am literally grabbing 2 mins here and there. I have my laptop in the kitchen and my smartphone glued to me as that’s the only way I can make it work at the moment #sharewithme

    • You Baby Me Mummy
      Reply

      We all do what we have to, there is no harm in working like that. It is just so nice to finally have some desk space x

  • Donna
    Reply

    These are all great tips. With my day job I have a good work life balance and with blogging it’s still a work in progress too! x

    • You Baby Me Mummy
      Reply

      So hard with blogging isn’t it x

  • Hannah mum's days
    Reply

    Really great tips Aby, I struggle with this (she says typing away at 9:15 at night) so I think I need to do a print out and get my highlighter to work on this! I totally agree about the workspace, thrilled you finally got sorted, it makes such a difference!! xx

    • You Baby Me Mummy
      Reply

      Thanks darling, glad you enjoyed it xx

  • Jen
    Reply

    Great post! I’ve been trying to get the word out for my blog which is hard work. I need to find the balance. These tips will help. I always feel like I have a mile long list of things to do. I get so distracted when I should be focusing on one thing. Let’s hope I figure this out. Love your blog!

    • You Baby Me Mummy
      Reply

      Thanks so much, glad you love my blog and good luck x

  • Mummy Tries
    Reply

    Brilliant tips Aby, I think a work space is my biggest challenge but we are hoping to move soon, hopefully to somewhere a bit bigger 🙂 Realising we aren’t superwoman is definitely the best place to start xx

    • You Baby Me Mummy
      Reply

      Thanks hun. I hope you get the space you need xx

  • Mim
    Reply

    Great tips here – working from home isn’t for everyone, you have to be so disciplined and motivated or run the risk of getting no work done or having no free time! Mim x #TheList

  • Anita Cleare
    Reply

    The elusive work-life balance! Great tips! I think in the end we all have to come up with an individual solution – I try to monitor my stress and grumpiness levels closely and see if I can see patterns that give me a clue as to situations I should change or avoid. In general, if it ain’t working, try something different!

  • Zoe Meunier
    Reply

    Great tips, Aby! Yes, I’ve definitely been guilty of taking on too much. Another one I’d suggest is making sure you know exactly what’s involved before agreeing to take something on. Sometimes something that seems pretty simple can end up being incredibly time-consuming, and not worth the amount you’re being paid for it!

    • You Baby Me Mummy
      Reply

      Yes great tip, always pays to make sure you have all the information 🙂 x

  • Jemma Chambers
    Reply

    How I wish i was I was a freelancer! I do work from home though and the same applies. Brilliant tips; The key for me is a separate work space and having my blog to help me switch off #thelist

  • Katie / Pouting In Heels
    Reply

    Really good tips here Aby! As a freelancer, there are two things I swear by that work for me. One – like you said, only check your emails a couple of times a day. (So I do this morning and lunchtime) and two – switch off most (if not all) notifications on your phone.

    These two things have really helped to keep me sane over the past five years and have also given me much time back. It’s amazing how much time we lose by popping onto social media constantly or going back and forth to our inbox. It really is about doing one thing at a time, but being present and doing it well. Great post X

    • You Baby Me Mummy
      Reply

      Totally agree lovely. I get obsessed my checking all the platforms all the time! Such a time sink xx

  • Julie S.
    Reply

    Boundaries and realistic goals are so important. Great post!

  • Ness
    Reply

    I find it really hard for me to have a work/life balance. I look after my children during the day so I end up doing most of my work in the evenings when i have finally got them into bed. Hence why I am commenting on blogs at 11pm on a Friday night!

  • caroline
    Reply

    I really love your blog topics, as usual some great tips. I have recently created a little desk space for myself and I find it much better too. x

    • You Baby Me Mummy
      Reply

      Ah thanks hun. So glad you have a new space too x

  • Jenny
    Reply

    So true and I am sufferring so much of this lately that I really need to set a schedule and stick to what time limits I give myself as I never stop and never clock off and never fully present at the moment and I hate that about myself. It overwhelms me most days. So I am enjoying my forced slower pace of life here in the states and hoping when I get back home to really assess it all and be organized with time limits and restricting myself to enjoy life we only live once. Great advice as always darling. Glad you are finding balance. Thank you so much for linking up to Share With Me #sharewithme

    • You Baby Me Mummy
      Reply

      It is just so hard isn’t it?! We work in an industry that never sleeps! x

  • Leigh - Headspace Perspective
    Reply

    So glad you’ve got a desk now – I got my own a couple of months ago (previously I was working on the dining room table) – makes such a difference. I’ve turned off notifications and try to check email only a couple of times a day too – so distracting. Switching off is so important too – something I have to train myself to do. The One Thing book looks interesting, thanks for the recommendation lovely Aby xxx #TheList

    • You Baby Me Mummy
      Reply

      Thanks honey, I am loving having proper blogging space xxx

  • HonestMum
    Reply

    Wise words here, I am so strict about work and play although play has taken over recently with travelling so currently in catch up mode. So important to truly live and enjoy life too and I don’t even open my laptop or look at my phone in down time or on a weekend usually. It’s hard because as a full time blogger, work literally never stops but you have to make it. Thanks for linking up to #brilliantblogposts

  • Hello Beautiful Bear
    Reply

    I think that these tips are fab, brilliant for anyone in all aspects of work & home, thank you for sharing them! X X

    • You Baby Me Mummy
      Reply

      Thanks lovely, glad you liked the post xx

  • Carry On Katy
    Reply

    Fab post as always!
    I’ve been a freelancer for over ten years and I’ve had all the struggles you can think of.
    The best advice I can think of is:
    1.Always save your cash as getting paid after working is unpredictable and cash flow issues can often cause problems.
    2. Keep receipts for everything in a file…ink washes off and when you do your tax return it can be really tricky if you haven’t kept your receipts in a safe place (and not at the bottom of your knicker drawer like I used to do)
    3. Don’t feel guilty about the days when you are so busy that your kids eat badly and you don’t spend decent time with them…because there will be plenty of days when you can do lots with them…you can change your schedule to make up for it!
    We have a lot of time off being a musicians It’s a bonus. It also means that our kids get to spend lots of time with both of us.
    There are so many advantages to being freelance.xx

    • You Baby Me Mummy
      Reply

      Fabulous tips honey! Freelancing is hard, but we wouldn’t have it any other way would we?! xx

  • Reply

    Focusing on one thing is great advice, I am so distracted sometimes trying to get everything done that nothing gets done as well as I could do it!

    • You Baby Me Mummy
      Reply

      Hope it works, remember multi tasking is your enemy x

  • Amy
    Reply

    I must say I find it extraordinarily difficult to switch ofF. I’m not sure if it’s because I haven’t got my site to exactly the place I want it to be in terms of being recognisable and successful, maybe when I have I’ll be able to switch the notifications off although I’m not sure that will ever happen! Fab post huni xxx

I really love reading your comments

Start typing and press Enter to search