The holidays can be a tough season for freelancers and solopreneurs. There’s no paid time off when you work for yourself. Adding the extra holiday expenses and additional social obligations to your already long to-do list might have you a little bit stressed but that doesn't mean that you can't partake in all the events this festive season brings. Remember that you are in charge and you control the shots
(this article is adapted from MeetEdgar
(you can read the entire article here)
There are a few things to keep in mind before you can begin celebrating.
1. Be clear on your boundaries
The most important thing you need to do first is establish boundaries with everyone you will be in contact with, especially your family. Set up a system and make sure to honor it ( if you have to break them, it is nice to let everyone know beforehand). Some of the ways you can do this are listed below.
Add your holiday hours into your email signature
Email or communicate with your clients about your holiday hours. Give them plenty of lead time about your hours so they are able to plan in advance for their needs
Create an out of office email autoresponder that informs individuals of your hours and when you’ll return
Designate “business hours” if you’re feeling stressed about completely disconnecting. For example, commit to only checking your email and social feeds twice a day. Be sure to reflect that in all communication
Don’t worry so much about making your clients angry when you take time off. Most will understand that you are a human and you need time to recharge. Also, many of your clients will be taking time off as well!
2. Plan your content in advance
Your business never sleeps, and even though you are on vacation, it still runs so you need to have a plan to make sure that your content still gets out, you never know where your next client will come from, so you always need to be ready.
Here are some ideas to help you plan that content. You should consider automating it, so even when you are not working, the content still gets out
Curate content from other sources.
Re-share older blog posts. The end of the year is a great time to do a “Best Of” social media.
Share personal or behind the scenes posts. Remember that your business is you and that your fans and followers want to see a more personal side of you. The holiday season provides a great opportunity for you to share more personality, behind the scenes or personal posts.
3. Use your time wisely
Even though it seems like it doesn't makes sense, "down time" is very beneficial for your business.
Use this time to write down any ideas that may come to mind, they could be your next blog post
Even though you are not at work in your business, doesn't mean that you can't network. Use this time to let those third cousins , you never see often , know what you do, who knows , they could be your next client.
4. Reflect Back
At this time of year, especially around the New Year, when you are making your goals for 2019, look back on the past year, and evaluate what you accomplished and celebrate these. You should also look at what didn't get accomplished and the reasoning behind it, and use these as your jumping off point for the new year.
Take advantage of the down time during this holiday season, acknowledge that this is your business and be ready to charge into 2019 and make it your best year yet.