Every freelancer has a different reason for starting their own freelancing business. There are many attractive advantages to freelancing. You can work from anywhere, set your own hours, and you can work on whatever projects you’d like. 

However, there is a flip side to all of the great things that comes with freelancing: burnout

What Is Burnout?

Burnout is defined by the Mayo Clinic as a state of physical or emotional exhaustion that involves a sense of reduced accomplishment and loss of personal identity. 

Some symptoms can include: 

  • Lack of energy
  • Lack of satisfaction from your achievements 
  • Mood swings 
  • No motivation
  • Aversion to work
  • Stress 
  • Mood swings

The stress from these symptoms can take a toll on your body causing headaches, back pain, stomach issues, etc. 

What Causes Freelancer Burnout?

Running your own business can have you “wearing many different hats.” Some freelancers are their own assistant, accountant, appointment setter, etc.

Juggling multiple roles can cause you to feel overwhelmed and stressed. Continuing this cycle can ultimately lead to burnout. 

Overbooking or overcommitting yourself to clients, projects, meetings, etc. can contribute to burnout. Feeling rushed and stressed for hours at a time can make your day feel chaotic. Ultimately, making you feel like you weren’t productive enough. 

Another cause of burnout is isolation. Working remotely can be a lonely business. Without coworkers to help alleviate stress, it can be hard to handle everything on your own with no outlet. 

Not having a dedicated work space can also contribute to feeling burnt out. Merging your home and office can be unhealthy. Without a dedicated workspace or office, there will definitely be distractions. It can be hard to focus on your work only in a shared space. When you have a dedicated workspace, it has one purpose, allowing you to focus on your tasks. 

How Can You Treat Burnout or Stop It From Happening?

One of the most important things to treat burnout is to know your worth as a freelancer and own it. 

You can avoid extra stress by choosing your work and clients wisely. Make sure you have enough time to dedicate to each of your projects, clients, and most importantly yourself. There are only 24 hours in each day so make sure you are not overextending yourself. Set aside time everyday to eat breakfast, lunch, and dinner. 

You cannot be your best self for your clients if you do not take care of yourself. Exercising, getting enough sleep, drinking lots of water are a few ways you can improve your energy, lower your stress, and overall improve your quality of life. 

Take Care

The saying “you can’t pour from an empty cup” is especially true for freelancers. Take care of yourself in order to be the best for your clients and for you!