I am going on a break!!!! Freaking at last! You probably guess that I have been on home arrest ever since I got pregnant and hadn’t had the opportunity to travel much. Flying to and back from Singapore doesn’t count because I’ll still be up to my neck with chores and duties as a mother and as a daughter.
Me time have been snatched moments whenever someone can keep an eye on my little one. And don’t get me going on about how I missed out ALL the blockbusters in the cinema and can only settle for DVD release or online streaming. Ain’t the same without the wide screen, heart thumping ear blasting speakers and popcorn.
So it has been….counting… 17 months since I last took a holiday break and 8 months since I last buried myself under piles of pillow for straight 8 hours. I’m going take a little resort break, grabbing some ‘me’ time and the first time I’m going to be away from my little one. She’s in good hands with family and we are just 3 hours road trip away if there is any emergency.
Enough of my ramblings, here are some things you need to prepare for as a freelancer when you are going on a break.
Notify Your Clients Early
Tell your clients one month in advance. Some of them might have incoming projects that are targeted towards the date that you are away. Then remind them again 2 weeks before you leave and one more reminder a few days before you need to go. Never try to juggle work when you are on a break. That defeat the purposes, isn’t it?
Tell Your Partners Too
If you work in a team, let them know in advance as well. They might need to strike you off as a headcount in projects that you handle together with them. They will appreciate that you kept them updated as the client may forget to keep them in the loop.
Space Yourself Appropriately
I find myself swarmed with work the moment I announced my break period. Many clients like to hold off projects and assignments until the last moment when they need you. Hence, it is wiser to taper off 2 weeks and space the assignments out than to rush through the deadlines without giving leeway for revisions and corrections.
If I am going away on the 7th, I’ll let my clients know that I am not available from 1st onwards. That gives me a week to clear any outstanding assignments and leave me enough time to get ready for my holiday too, like shopping for a new beach hat…
Set Away Messages
You can set away messages on freelancing platforms and on your Skype. It helps those people who are trying to get you are reminded that you are away.
Be Prepared For Zero Connectivity
You never know what may happen during your vacation so it pays to be ready for it. It doesn’t do anyone any good if you panic over low internet connections and trying to refresh your Skype, just to see incoming messages. Like I mentioned above, it is better to stay off work when you are away on a break.
Give Yourself Some Time To Recover
Don’t rush and jump into work the moment you are home. There are a lot of things to do once you get back, like unpacking and cleaning up your place. Have a day or two to recover from your vacation, sleep off any jet lag and go through photos of your holiday. Be ready and refresh when you begin work.
If you are a good freelancer, your clients might just hold off their assignments, pending for your return. Sometimes it is easier to wait for your return than to hire a new freelancer and retrain him to do your job. The moment you announced you are back, you might find yourself pile up with assignments accumulated during your absence.
Follow these rules and you will have a restful and peaceful vacation without the fear that your clients will drop you off just because you took a break.
Any bright ideas to share here or your experience when going away on a holiday? The above applies to those who are in the regular workforce as well.
Ps. I’ll be back on the 25th, meanwhile, you’ll still have your regular feed of MiddleMe so no withdrawal symptoms!
Best things in life are meant to be shared, start spreading MiddleMe around, after all, sharing is caring.