5 psychological challenges of freelancing

Do you have the mental strength required to survive freelance life? Take a long, hard look at these five facts.

Thinking about making the jump to freelance life? You'll find all the resources you need to help you make the decision here on Creative Bloq – including the ultimate guide to being a freelance designer and 10 things nobody tells you about going freelance.

Here we're looking at mental health. Do you have the mental strength to survive freelance life? Here are five psychological challenges you'll need to face…

01. Loneliness

"How was your weekend? Really like what you're doing there. Would you like a cake?” These are all things that you are not going to hear if you're freelancing at home.

Keeping worries, doubts and Facebook addiction at bay when you spend your nine-to-five solo takes Jedi-like mind control.

02. Motivation

With no-one breathing down your neck, everything you do – from the quantity of work to when you start in the morning – is completely under your control. Keeping excited without the enthusiasm of others tests your love for design to the max.

03. Prioritising

Every client you work for always expects their commission to be your top priority. Often it's not. Trying to keep everyone happy when six people want you to do last minute changes in a day, probably means you're going to bed at 3am. Sorry.

04. Direction

Unlike your full-time colleagues, freelancing doesn't have a linear progression where you work your way up the chain. Navigating which opportunities to take on, without the help of a mentor means you can take on too much, have huge FOMO pangs or wield a downright bizarre CV.

05. Pressure

Overspent on your holiday? Got bills to pay and you were sick for a week? Not only is the responsibility for bringing in your income enough to provoke a melt-down, but seasonal fluctuations and lazy finance departments constantly keep you on your toes. There is no stability… ever.

The full version of this article first appeared inside Computer Arts issue 246, on sale now, which reveals the UK's top 30 studios and is packed with advice for freelancers.

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