Ask anyone who does freelance work, and they will tell you the same thing. Work volume rises and falls. To be a successful freelancer, you have to take advantage of the highs and plan for the lows. Thankfully, I have been blessed in my freelance career. I have had some very high highs, and my lows have been few and far between. When my business is overflowing, I find it easier to stay motivated. I can see the opportunity in front of me, and I get motivated to conquer it all. In contrast, when my business drops, I struggle to stay motivated. The demand drops, and my mind begins to wander. Over the years, I have developed methods for recognizing this drop in focus and addressing it. That way, I make it through the time of struggle to enjoy the next rise in my freelance writing business.
Recognizing Triggers in My Freelance Writing Business
Over the years, I have learned to look out for potential changes in my business that can trigger me. For example, I know that if a client drops in work volume, it can impact my level of motivation. In contrast, if I pick up multiple clients at the same time, I can feel motivated, but my stress levels also increase. Identifying situations that can impact how I feel help me address them sooner. This reduces the level of impact that the trigger has on my mindset and business.
Seeing the Signs of Motivation Drop
A few signs let me know I may be struggling with motivation. Keeping an eye out for these signs is crucial. If I don’t catch them early on, it can cause me to fall behind in my work. The deadlines don’t change. So, the work piles up. As the work piles up, it becomes ever so overwhelming. The result is a vicious cycle of getting more overwhelmed and unmotivated as more work piles up. These are some of the signs that let me know it is time to take action.
Strategies For Dealing With No Motivation
There are a ton of strategies out there for dealing with a lack of motivation. A quick Google search, and you’ll quickly be flooded with suggestions. My goal isn’t to tell you how to deal with your lack of motivation. Instead, it is to share my experience with my freelance writing business and what works for me. It took me years of trial and error to figure out the right combination of coping mechanisms.
My advice is to stay open-minded and hopeful. Try a variety of strategies and techniques. If something doesn’t work, throw it out and try something new. What works for others may not work for you. Maybe you are like me and need a variety of coping mechanisms.
Reminding Myself Why I Love Freelance Writing
When I start to struggle, I take a moment to remind myself why I love freelance content writing. It can be easy to get lost in the trees and lose sight of the forest. When work opportunities drop, it can be easy to get focused on the negative. This is the perfect time to remind myself why I started a freelance writing business. Reminding myself of why I love writing helps me to stay motivated. It motivates me to find new clients.
Finding Other Ways to Stay Productive
When I don’t have a steady flow of work, I need to find other ways to remain productive. To do this, I set goals for myself in other areas of my life. I can then feel like I am accomplishing something by meeting these goals. For example, I recently meal prepped. This is normal for our house. However, I challenged myself with something new by preparing a variety of soups. My husband and I got together and prepared eight different types of soup. We then packaged them up into individual-sized containers and labeled the lid. At the end of the afternoon, I felt motivated and accomplished as I looked at the almost fifty cups of prepared soup.
Another example of me staying productive outside of work is my dragon fruit project. I purchased a few dragon fruit plants and built a trellis for them. I set aside a Saturday for this project. At the end of the day, I had a new dragon fruit plant and trellis ready for it to grow on. Over the last couple of months, I’ve watched the plants grow and reach above the trellis. Here’s hoping that next summer, I will have a crop of dragon fruits to enjoy.
Sometimes, I get down on myself. When work becomes slow, it is easy to doubt my skills. When this happens, it becomes hard to stay motivated. So to combat this, I use positive affirmations. This is something my family does in general, so it is easy to adapt it to work motivation. We keep a pack of chalk markers in the house. We then use them to draw pictures or write messages to each other on the bathroom mirrors. It is a fun and easy way to give each other words of love and encouragement.
Talk With Fellow Freelancers
Working from home as a freelancer can feel isolating at times. There is no office culture or community to chat with. The result in feeling alone on an island. Reaching out to network and communicate with other freelancers is important because it allows me to stay in touch with industry trends. If my business declines, I can reach out to other writers to see how they are doing. I never want other freelance writers to struggle. However, knowing that I’m not the only one can give me a sense of peace. There is something bigger happening that goes beyond my freelance business.
Stay Physically Active
I work out five days a week. This could be going to the gym, riding my bicycle, or doing Pilates. Staying physically active gives me several benefits. The most obvious is staying healthy and in shape. However, it also helps me burn extra energy so that I sleep better at night. It also helps me stay happy and positive. Keeping my regular routine helps me stay on track and motivated for the rest of my personal and professional life.
Staying Motivated As a Freelance Writer
I wish I could say I always stayed motivated doing a career I love. However, life has its ups and downs, and sometimes I struggle. Knowing what triggers my drop in motivation makes it easier to avoid those triggers. If I do start to see signs of being unmotivated, I have a strategy to combat it. That way, I can stay focused and re-engage my brain to be ready for when business picks up again.