Don’t believe what Rory Gilmore or Hannah Horvath show you: freelance writers work their asses off. At least the ones in my circle do.
For this sake of this Year, I’m slowing my ass down for a month.
6.5% of people in the United States are “self-employed” in a nation that averages a 34.3 hour work week. That breaks down into 6.86 hours of daily work.
That’s not me.
I’m my own boss and my own assistant. I handle my PR, social media, pitching, hiring, firing, HR, content, editing, uploading, invoicing, and promotion. I juggle multiple email addresses and websites, and too many Dropbox folders and Google spreadsheets than are mentally healthy.
Yes, I get to hang with my dog all day. Yes, I can take two hours of my afternoon to finish a novel if I so choose, or walk to clear my head when shit gets real. Yes, part of my reason for freelancing fulfills the reality that I am sometimes too sick to work and need to succumb to bed and Netflix until my body recoups. But that then means I have to kick extra ass when it does.
I don’t have anyone to answer to but me. I have a weird body. I constantly juggle working with new people — most of whom I never meet in person. I’m often at my desk by 7 am, and sometimes don’t shut my computer until 9 pm. I work weekends when I feel like it because I love what I do. I take days off when I feel like it because I love not working, too. Even though no one demands that I’m at that desk by seven, or taking stock of what I wear, I hold myself to standards, expectations, and judgments. If I don’t make money, it’s my fault. If I turn in bad work, it’s my fault. If I succeed wildly, it’s my triumph.
It’s a balancing act. It takes coffee. It takes comfort. It takes self-discipline. I love it.
It’s time to shake it up.
So this month, I’m doing just that — shifting my morning and evening habits to see how they affect my health, socialization, and overall happiness. In four short studies, I shall:
- Give up my morning coffee!
- Not watch television (my nightly collapse-into-bed ritual)!
- Dress in office attire before I sit to work!
- Stop working at 5 pm!
Will this shift my working hours? Make me more or less productive? Have me groggy and uninspired or pumped to push through?
Let’s see, shall we?!?!