How to take a holiday when you freelance

I’m coming clean.  KindredHQ is on holiday.  Taking a break. The first proper holiday for some time, and it’s just a week or so, just on a staycation somewhere nice in the UK.  Just hanging out.

The fact is that I’m as bad as the rest; I just don’t know when to take a break.  There’s always a reason why I can’t take one normally, either that I can’t afford it or I’ve simply got too much to do, or I think I’m going to miss out on the client project of a lifetime.

Even those of you who thrive on stress know that taking the odd break is good for you.  Without one, your brain stops working as well, things start to get a little out of proportion and you start to become careless. And your physical health suffers too.  Staying glued to your computer or smartphone forever is not productive, it makes you sick.

You’ll be nodding sagely.  You know that I’m right, but when you are the boss, how can you possibly relax when you are on holiday when you have no one to hand over to when you are away?

Well the fact is that with a bit of forward planning, you can go on holiday, recharge your batteries and come back to happy clients.  Here’s how:

1. Turn to your freelance network

Every freelancer needs a group of trusty friends and associates.  Here’s where your network can really help.  Line up a few trusted allies who can pick up any emergency jobs from your clients, and offer to do the same for them when they go on holiday.

2. Get yourself a virtual assistant

If ever there was a time that you will see the benefit of a virtual assistant it’s when you go away.  For starters, it means that your office is never closed, and if you are clever about it you can get a virtual assistant powering their way through all that admin stuff that you’ve left piling up for months too.

3. Give your clients plenty of notice

Unless your clients are really unreasonable, and if they are, you should probably ditch them anyway, they will understand that you need a holiday once in a while.  Tell them at least a month beforehand if you can, and keep reassuring them that you’ve put plans in place.

4. If all else fails, take your laptop

To be honest, you should try and switch off, but realistically speaking that’s very difficult for many freelancers.  So if you really, really must, take your laptop and tools with you.  You will be reliant on staying somewhere that you can get decent wifi or access to the internet, but at least you’ll be away from the day to day.  And they say that a change is as good as a rest.  To be honest, when I do this, I very quickly find that I’m pretending that there was no wifi…but that’s our little secret.

Stop kidding yourself that everything will go pear-shaped when you go on holiday.  It rarely does, and you will reap the rewards of having a break quickly.  The break itself can often lead to a creative burst of energy when you get back, and that’s got to be a good one.

So if you haven’t already, get booking that holiday right now!




Who is Alex Butler

Hello, I'm Alex Butler and I founded the KindredHQ community and blog back in 2011 after I re-started a freelance career. I LOVE freelancing and I wouldn't swop the freedom, control and joy of working for myself for anything. But I realised how much I missed the company and energy of other people - of having a team around me. So, I got a few people together one day with our laptops, a jar of coffee and some jelly babies and we sat and worked together one afternoon. We've been doing that every week in London, UK since then! I am still 100% freelance and I like to share the everyday highs and lows of being a freelancer here on the blog.

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