Life has been (voluntarily) stressful of late what with the ‘running a theatre company whilst trying to make a living with lots of freelance jobs and also trying to have a life’ sort of thing. Instead of feeling sorry for myself or repeatedly kicking myself for all the mistakes I constantly repeat, I thought I’d write (in true Joseph Mills style) 16 facts I need to come to terms with about being a freelancer:
1. I will always have a home full of clutter, from books and workshop plans to random props, balloons and bits of string.
2. I will spend 1000s of hours a year on trains.
3. I will not be paid for these hours so should spend them reading high quality fantasy.
4. I will take on too much work. ‘Well, I’m in Hammersmith til 12 so I should be able to get to Wimbledon for a workshop at 2 then back to Hampstead for a meeting at 5pm, no problem’.
5. I will underestimate the emotional impact of my work.
6. I will have a complex love-hate relationship with my smartphone. I LOVE that I can read BBC News when I’m bored, turn on spotify and search for a song on the spur of the moment in a workshop, and use google maps to find a school when I’m running late. I HATE receiving work emails on the move, rubbish battery life, and google maps’ occasional lies!
7. I will forget I have to plan each session I do/meeting I have so I have to spend aforementioned travel time planning.
8. I cannot commit to regular evening activities.
9. I will go and see lots of shows that friends/colleagues are in (sometimes for free).
10. I will sometimes remember that I AM freelance and it’s OK to take a 2hour lunch!
11. I will get invited to awesome networking events and I go as me, not representing anyone else!
12. I can have creative meetings at midnight and enjoy them (although this mostly comes with living with WBN!)
13. I will constantly forget that if I work 20 days without a break my body will rebel and make me ill.
14. I will struggle to understand the concept of ‘the weekend’ and ‘payday’.
15. At the start of each new project I will completely forget what went wrong on the last one and remain steadfastly optimistic that this new project will be THE BEST EVER!
16. Whenever I get stressed I need to remember that being a freelancer is (usually) something that makes me happy.
OK, feeling a bit better now. Onwards!