There are many benefits that come with being a professional freelancer. It affords you the luxury of working from anywhere, you have the flexibility of setting your own hours and avoiding a boss breathing down your neck. It definitely has its perks.
However, challenges for the independent, professional freelancer exist too. When you’re a company of one person, how do you find the time to take a vacation when you’ve got no one there, not even the comfort of other co-workers to back you up? It’s not like you’re getting paid time off when you’re freelancing. So what’s the answer?
One of the best ways to prep for your vacation is to do the heavy lifting in advance. This might include working longer hours leading up to your break as it will provide you with a financial cushion in case you have less work upon your return.
Another strategy that’s useful is to complete your projects ahead of their due date and then submit them while you’re on vacation. This tactic keeps your revenue stream from drying up if you’re not the type who likes to “drop off the grid” when on holiday.
It’s All About The Planning
There are additional ways to stretch your hard-earned freelance dollars by planning your vacation in the off-season. Hotels, airfare, and other accommodations are more affordable and you avoid the crowds.
Taking an “extended” business trip is another tactic employed by the savvy freelancer. For example, if your client is paying your airfare, extend your business trip a few extra days for an added vacation. This may lead to generating additional work on your trip and thus enabling you to write it off come tax time.
Let Your Clients Know
Your time is just that – your time. Guard it ruthlessly. Otherwise, you’ll have clients contacting you while you’re away. This distracts you from that much-needed R & R.
If you do experience a client who reaches out during your holiday, kindly remind them that you’re unavailable, you did let them know in advance, and you’ll be happy to tackle the problem when you get back. If they get pushy, it might be time to reconsider your working relationship with them.
Too, while checking your email is completely acceptable while on vacation, be sure that you’re not letting it pull you down a rabbit hole. You may have work line up upon your return, which is the perfect way to hit the ground running.
It’s important to remember that just because you’re an office of one doesn’t mean you can’t take a vacation from time to time. You work hard just like everybody else, and deserve a break. All it takes is a little planning on your part. Your business will still be there when you return.