Sometimes it seems as though we’ve fallen into a funk that we are unable to get out of. Perhaps the pressures of work are getting to us, or maybe we’ve just become jaded and find it hard to motivate ourselves to keep going. Burnout is a word that seems to get thrown around all the time, but it is very real and can drastically affect one’s productivity.

According to Healthline, a reputable online publication that offers reputable information on healthcare and wellbeing, burnout happens gradually and 4 to 7 percent of the workforce experience burnout at some point in their career, with the medical field reporting the highest amount of burnout.

Do freelancers also experience burnout?

The sad answer to this question is that freelancers do experience burnout, just as much, if not more, than their corporate counterparts and desk job patrons because without adhering to a fixed schedule, many freelancers make work part of their life and never truly take a break from it. That’s why using an employee monitoring software is so important. Tracking your hours means that you are held accountable for the amount of time that you put into your work, and you can justify taking a break when you’ve hit a certain quota instead of losing track of time and not truly understanding how much you’ve done, which brings us to the next point.

Measure your performance

Sometimes freelancers feel like they’ve worked and worked and achieved nothing at all. But the truth is there are small accomplishments that we simply do not acknowledge and that’s why when you’re starting to lose touch with your motivation for work, start celebrating your wins no matter how small. Every reply to an email is a job well done, and every small milestone that you’ve achieved on your project is worthy of acknowledgement. Injecting positive feelings into the things that are demotivating you can sometimes turn it around because remember: you were passionate about it once.

Don’t take on more than you can handle

One of the greatest reasons for freelancers to experience burnout, aside from not knowing when to take a break, is that friends and family tend to take their lack of a nine-to-five as a sign that they are free. But the life of a freelancer is anything but free. Attempting to keep up with your social life, and running errands for your family members, learning new skills, all the while juggling personal projects and a few gigs on the side is a recipe for disaster.

Personalize a solution for your specific needs

If you’re someone who won’t be happy unless you get in two hours of gaming per night or a weekly gathering with your family, give that priority in your schedule. You’re a freelancer and can afford to have a flexible schedule. Build your schedule around your number one priority. If, say, you want to play games around 8pm every night, ensure that everything else is done earlier in the day. Having a personalized schedule is something that every freelancer needs in order to get back on track and not fall out of it because psychologically speaking, having a routine can give us purpose, especially in times of crisis like the Covid-19 pandemic that has been sweeping the world for close to two years.