Staying Healthy as a Freelancer

Finding work and pitching topics. Research. Planning and scheduling. Typing away. A freelance writer’s work is never DONE. There is …

Finding work and pitching topics.

Research.

Planning and scheduling.

Typing away.

A freelance writer’s work is never DONE.

There is always more to do. As one project is finished and submitted, others are already being developed.

We all know, as a freelance writer, being busy is something to be grateful for. We are happy and try to take advantage of the time where the work keeps coming, because it may not always be that way.

Each day we need to make sure that we take the steps necessary to feel good and to stay able to focus on what needs to be done. This happens when we take care of our health and that can be done with a few simple, but vital, healthful habits.

Drink Water

Are you currently drinking water regularly throughout the day?

Even if you are, you might actually need more.

A good goal is to aim for 50-100 ounces of water per day, or filing and drinking a 20 oz. water bottle 3-4 times.

This goal is a wide range because it allows for differences in weight as well as activity level. For some people, drinking 50 ounces of water is going to be a challenge. For others, having a goal of 100 ounces is going to be no big deal.

Set a goal that pushes you beyond what you currently are drinking and is realistic for you.

There are a few ways to help make this happen:

  • Find a water bottle or cup with a lid that you like. You’re probably more likely to stick with using the water bottle or cup if it makes you feel good, and the lid is going to help you keep from spilling on your desk or your computer! By using the same bottle or cup each day, you know how many times you need to refill it to get to your goal, and you’re helping the environment. I find I drink more when I have a straw, so that’s the type of cup I have with me most of the time.
  • Mentally check in at lunchtime: are you about halfway to reaching your goal? If so, great! If not, you still have plenty of time to make progress. Make sure you start the second half of your day by filling your water bottle again.
  • You can add lemon, lime or berries to your water if you want a little flavor, and to mix it up since you’re going to be drinking A LOT of water.

Remember your Fruits and Vegetables

Eating more fruits and vegetables adds a significant amount of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants to our bodies.

This helps our bodies work better and also helps fill us up on the good stuff. Plan healthy snacks that involve fruits and/or vegetables since most “snack” foods or processed and unhealthy.

Here are a few ideas to fit fruits and veggies into your day:

  • Apple with peanut or almond butter
  • Carrots, celery, cucumber, and hummus
  • Cucumber rounds topped with tuna or chicken salad
  • Berries and nuts (almonds, cashews, pistachios, walnuts etc.)
  • Smoothie (1 cup frozen berries or other fruit, 1 handful greens, 1 cup coconut water)

Figure out what works for you and build those items into your regular shopping.

If you always have them on hand, you’re more likely to make healthy choices when you’re busy working away and realize you haven’t eaten in a while!

Get Walking

Stuck with an idea? Get up and go for a walk.

Studies show that creativity is boosted while walking and it doesn’t matter if it’s inside or outside.

When you are planning your day, schedule in a couple times to get up and walk around to boost your creativity. It’s helpful to have this time scheduled, but also remember that you may need to get up at different times as well to get your creativity going.

You can also add in a workout at home if you’ve been finding it a challenge to get to the gym (or if you don’t have a membership).

Meditation 

Don’t worry…this doesn’t necessarily mean sitting on the floor cross-legged with a totally clear mind. Meditation is a time to stand, sit, or lay down (be careful you don’t fall asleep!) and momentarily unplug from the tasks you are doing.

There are a few simple ways to get started with meditation if this is new for you…

  • Guided meditation can be as short as a couple minutes or over an hour depending on what you are looking for. There are a ton for free on YouTube or you can find an app and they talk you through a story or mindful exercise.
  • Guided breathing is similar to a guided meditation but the focus is specifically on your breath.
  • Binaural Beats and Isochronic tones are specific types of sound that are beneficial to our brain. These are sometimes included in guided meditation and guided breathing but also come separately if you don’t want someone guiding you. These can also be used while you are working.

Self-Care (Refilling Your Cup)

This is a HUGE topic and I will just go into it briefly for now. We must make sure we are taking care of our mind, body, and soul.

It’s easy to get caught up in the business of life and feel drained, lack energy, or just get detached from why we love what we do.

This is why self-care is important.

For each person, self-care is different because it is about what helps YOU recharge, feel connected, and “fills your cup.”

Here are some ideas for self-care:

  • Do a workout
  • Take a bubble bath
  • Make a nutritious meal
  • Get out in nature
  • Take an epsom salt bath
  • Spend time with someone who brings you joy
  • Spend time alone
  • Make sure you are getting the amount of sleep you know is best for you

Whether you have a lot of new habits to create or just a few to add back into your daily schedule, the most important part is that you start today.

As amazing as it can be to be a freelance writer, there are also challenges that come with it that can make it hard to prioritize our own health.

Decide what changes you want/need to make and which you want to focus on first. Add reminders to your calendar to check in with how you are doing and refer back to this post, so you have a reminder of these good habits.

Creating healthier habits will help your life in many ways.

Get started with healthy habits now; you deserve it!

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