If you haven’t experienced freelance burnout, it’s probably only a matter of time. Burnout is something that happens to most freelancers. There are a few key ways to manage it so it doesn’t affect your income or career.
What Is Freelance Burnout?
Freelance burnout is what happens when you just don’t have it in you to complete another project for anyone, even your best clients. You’re just plain tired of being a freelancer.
You procrastinate to the point where every project becomes an emergency project or it’s delivered late. Your passion and enthusiasm for your career and business have evaporated.
What Causes Freelance Burnout?
Burnout is caused by a number of possible events or factors.
1. You’re in the wrong niche/industry. Sometimes we dive into a niche because it’s the easiest. However, if you don’t have an undying passion for that niche, then burnout is a very real possibility.
2. You’re working too hard. Working every day, seven days a week and eight to ten hours a day is a lot. For most people, it’s too much. You normally get two days off when you work at 9-5 and that shouldn’t change as a freelancer either. Even if you absolutely enjoy what you’re doing, breaks and days off are essential.
3. You’re bored. Sometimes freelancers end up doing the same type of project over and over again. If you’re in a creative field, this may be stunting your creativity.
I’m Burnt Out, Now What?
If you’re suffering from burnout, try to identify why it is happening. Are you bored? Working too hard? In the wrong field? Take some time to look within yourself for the answers. It’s not going to go away until you know what’s causing it.
If you’re bored, find something that excites you. Look for a creative outlet. It can be something related to your business or entirely separate. You can create a new report, video or ebook to promote your business. Take up photography as a new hobby or write a fiction book. Make time to keep your creative side happy.
If you’re working too hard, the solution is both simple and complicated. The simple solution is to stop working so hard.
However, you have obligations – both financial and to your customers, right? Look for ways to lessen your workload. Can you outsource some of the tasks that take up your time? Do you have room in your budget to weed out the smaller, lesser paying clients, and focus on the bigger clients and projects?
Is it possible I’m in the wrong niche?
If you’re in the wrong niche or industry, then it’s time to make a transition. This isn’t as difficult as it sounds. Begin seeking clients in your desired niche or industry. Maybe you’ll create an entirely new website or blog devoted to that target audience.
As you begin to get more clients in your desired niche, you can begin to outsource the other projects or simply turn away new customers. It won’t take long to find clients in your new niche. When you love what you’re doing, people are attracted to you and your enthusiasm.
The biggest piece of advice is that if you’re suffering from burnout, take a look at what’s causing it. You might be surprised at the answers you find.
Once you know what’s causing it, take the steps necessary to change things around. You’ve built a successful freelance career, so making these changes should be easy for you!
Passion is energy. Feel the power that comes from focusing on what excites you. ~ Oprah Winfrey