It is part of life to experience burnout at work. Burnout is the physical, mental and psychological exhaustion and stress that happens to everyone – freelancers specifically are not exempted. Once freelancing burnout happens, it robs you the joy and passion of doing the job you love. It affects not only the quality of work you give, but also the relationship you share with the people around you.
Contrary to what other people believe that one can just “snap out of it”, suffering burnout does not just go away on its own. Sometimes it takes weeks and even months to overcome burnout. Despite giving your best effort, the quality of work would always fall short because you feel exhausted. You feel tired and unhappy.
Most of the time, freelancing burnout happens because you are overworked. Taking on too much work without giving yourself the time to relax and enjoy – does not only make you a boring and dull Jack (or Jill) but it will eventually breed a feeling of contempt towards the other people around you. Aside from this, burnout happens when you are bored at work, or your hard work is not being recognized.
Before you allow burnout to destroy the quality of your work and service, here are some easy ways for you to avoid exhaustion and fatigue.
- Take care of yourself. Despite how exciting it is to earn a lot taking on too many jobs at the same time, we cannot hide the fact that we are human and not machines. Even machines overheat and break down once they are used non stop. Take care of your body (and mind) before it overheats.
- Don’t skip meals
- Eat a complete diet of vegetables, fruits, and protein
- Drink at least 8 glasses of water
- Exercise (walking, running, aerobics or play your favorite sports)
- Sleep at least 7 hours a day.
- Take time out. Always set a day or two within the week as your personal time. It would be a day without work. Spend it by doing things you love and enjoy. Go out with your family and friends or simply stay home and read a good book.
- Be positive. Adopting a positive attitude and mindset is a choice. Human as we are, we are susceptible to easily turn to negative thoughts when faced with challenges in our career. Instead of taking criticisms negatively, choose to think positive. Use it to improve and hone your skills.
- Be your own fan. Celebrate each success, each milestone and each accomplishment by rewarding yourself. Your reward does not have to be expensive – have a relaxing massage or enjoy a beer or two with your friends will do.
Do these and you will avoid experiencing freelancing burnout. How about you? How do you avoid burnout at work?