Why the freelance copywriter needs discipline

Image courtesy of 123RFMost freelance copywriters work from home.  In today’s market, home working is positively trendy.  But does working from home really mean the freedom to suit yourself?

There’s no doubt working as a freelance copywriter brings a freedom you might never have experienced before.  You’re the boss.  You can work when you like and play when you like.

Home workers and discipline

Whether you’re a copywriter, a cupcake maker or a marketing consultant, you need discipline if you’re going to make a success of working from home.  Being a copywriter doesn’t mean you can throw away the alarm clock and sleep half the day, unless you work half the night, of course.

It’s all too easy to be distracted when you should be working.  Mowing the lawn, walking the dog, painting the shed, or watching the TV must wait until the work is finished and your deadlines are met.  These are the domestic equivalent of the office worker’s paper shuffling … they only delay the inevitable.

But home workers must have a disciplined approach to relaxation time too.  Many copywriters working from home forget about the all-important work-life balance, and just don’t know when to stop.  And working too many hours can be as damaging as working too few.

Plan your working day

We recommend our copywriting course students plan their working day.  If your day starts at 9.00, make sure you’re at your desk five minutes early and impress the boss (that’s you, by the way).  But be sure to take a break now and again.  Work until 5pm and if all your copy deadlines are met, it’s time to stop and relax.  It’s never quite that simple when you’re self-employed and it would be unrealistic to pretend otherwise.  But it is important to take time out or your health will suffer.

Benefits of a home office

Some copywriters work quite happily at their kitchen table.  But if you’re planning to work from home, think about reorganising and creating some office space.  Having a ‘place of work’ is good for discipline.  Simply walking through the hall ‘on your way to work’ can help you focus and put you in work mode.  If workspace is limited in the house, remember shed working is very ‘in’ this year, as we discussed in an earlier blog.

If you’re a freelancing newbie copywriter, you might find it takes a while to adjust to home working, but stick with it.  With a little management and discipline, you’ll wonder why you didn’t do it sooner.

Blog post by Joy McCarthy

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