Freelancing and Loneliness

Working from home is quickly becoming part of the economy’s natural makeup. This opportunity is attracting both employers and employees as a lifestyle choice to balance all of life’s spinning plates.

Employers offer this to their workforce to increase flexibility in working rotas and in some cases reduce the sizes of their work premises as their staff spend fewer hours ‘on site’.

For employees working from home this is becoming part of negotiations when starting a new role as this increases the ability to balance work and life, as well as reduce commuting costs and time spent away from home and family.

As a freelancer or small business owner working from home can create a focused and creative fortress that allows for uninterrupted work to be taken on and completed.  Working from home is convenient and comfortable, but it can also get lonely when you’re by yourself day in and day out. The lack of structure, social outlet and escapism from your role can cause the line of work to be stifled if there are not sufficient enough ways to beat the working from home blues.

Chitter Chatter

As a small business owner there is nothing lonelier, uncreative and fruitless than working by yourself in isolation and silence day in and day out. Adding in some specific and structured conversation is necessary.

This could be a deliberate break every hour where you leave your workstation, or even the house completely. You can add in specific contacts, time away from work and breaks throughout your day, this can be enhanced by swapping emailing with ‘face timing’ and video conferencing. This way of communicating switches up your day, it changes your style of communication and encourages you to think in a different manner.

Add TV shows or music to the background, your choice of music of course because you are the home working boss. This helps to break the silence and tense atmosphere at home and mimics the environment of having co-workers chatting away too.

Enhancing your day with different styles of communication, regular breaks and a structure for work and leisure will help your day become more effective and efficient.

Meet in Week

To help stay creative and to break up the monotony of working from home it is imperative that you shape the week around weekly meetings.

These motivating and upbeat meetings can be just the ticket for when you’re feeling isolated and disheartened with your workplace. By holding weekly meetings with other work-from-home friends you can share ideas that relate to your business, or not. But the key element is to enjoy the break from your workstation.

Either meeting in person at the local coffee shop or via Skype etc is a great way to keep your day in check, discussing goals, targets, achievements and so forth will help you feel physically and psychologically connected to the rest of your business and the wider world.

When working from home it’s imperative that you build and maintain relationships with people who understand your business and sector, setting up weekly or bi-weekly meetings with pseudo co-workers can give you all the incentive you need to keep loneliness at bay.

Socialise with Social Media

As a 21st century business it can be assumed that your small business is on social media, has a website and so forth. In which case use it!

Working from home gives you ample opportunity to let social media work for your business, but also to keep your up connections and contacts.

By updating your online world, sharing relevant content, interacting with customers and so forth can create a relevant and fulfilling environment at home.
Rather than silencing all your isolated thoughts, creativity and mini-achievements you have throughout the day, share them using your social media outlets. Get your messages out there, and start responding to other people’s messages who share content within your industry.

Following people on social media is powerful, this helps to build a stronger relationship with those in your network, as well as asking questions of those who follow you. Keep creative and keep creating, working from home gives you a chance to keep up with this ever evolving online world.

Outside the home

Working from home doesn’t mean that your chained to the desk in the small office upstairs. You are the boss of your home, and your day job. How and where you get creative and manage your affairs is up to you.

Whether you set up in the garden, use the free Wi-Fi in Starbucks or wear your cosy comforts on your sofa it doesn’t matter, in fact it promotes your own style of working.

One of the luxuries of working from home is that you can do it in a style that suits you. Keeping loneliness at bay means just being around people, even strangers, improving on your happiness and ability to socially interact. Working from outside the home can recharge the most isolated of home workers, find somewhere that suits your ability to work, and paying for a coffee in the meantime is nothing compared to an improvement in your health, well-being and social contact.

If you’re struggling with loneliness and would like someone to talk to, you can phone the Samaritans on 116 123

Mark is a health and wellbeing specialist with postgraduate training in occupational psychology, sports nutrition and cognitive therapy.