Writing this makes me uncomfortable

Not because I’m revealing any secrets, like that time my movie director Dad helped fake the moon landing on a stage in Beverl…

… oh heck!

Do me a favour and pretend you didn’t hear that, would you?

No, writing this makes me uncomfortable because I have a ton of other stuff, for other people, I should be doing.

Too much, in fact.

It’s been stressing me out lately, but one of the things I’ve noticed that makes it worse is my reaction to increased workload.

You see, if I was an office worker, I’d have an overloaded “in tray” that I’d work my way through, but as soon as that 5 o’clock whistle blasts…

… I’m outta there!

No checking email while having dinner…

No “I’ll just make these few edits before I go to bed”…

None of that.

But as a freelancer, especially one who works from home, there’s always a chance to do SOME work, and for me at least, this is a dangerous mindset to be in.

My good buddy Chris has an email system where you “Pay Yourself First” every single day and that got me thinking…

… what other stuff should I really be “paying myself first” with, before I get round to client work?

It’s like the medication I take for my underactive thyroid.

(See? I’m NOT fat… it IS glandular!)

No matter what happens… no matter how busy I get, I’m ALWAYS gonna take my medication.

No question.

What other no compromise, always-gonna-get-done-no-matter-what “medications” should I start adding to my life to keep me sane and healthy?

For me, there are a few things:

READING – Do too much thinking and writing and I get stuck in my own world. I need to escape – just a little – every single day. Reading a good book for 30 minutes makes a BIG difference.

EXERCISE – I’m not a qualified doctor, but sitting on my arse, hunched over a keyboard for long periods probably isn’t conducive to a long and healthy life. I need to do some exercise every single day.

Oh, and in case you’re wondering WHAT exercise I’m doing. It’s the one that makes you feel like this…

Season 3 Pain GIF by Friends

MEDITATION – Similar to reading, my mind needs a bit of time off to rest and recharge, so I’ve started spending at least 30 minutes every day with my eyes closed, doing nothing, letting my mind do whatever the hell it wants.

EMAIL MY LIST – Whether I email you every day or not, I’m always thinking about new ideas to share and new products and services that will help you out in some way. Doing this helps reinforce the idea that, even if things went belly up with my agency gigs, I’d have something to fall back on.

(Plus, it makes me feel useful and gives me those warm fuzzies!)

I’m not sharing my medication and holding them up as “Freelancer Commandments” or anything.

Nor am I carving them in stone.

You have to remember something – I have NO idea what the hell I’m doing.

They’ll probably change, but I think it’s important to think of these tasks as medication – stuff you have to do every single day no matter what.

It’s not about getting up at 3 AM and nailing every task a quickly as possible, but…

… you should probably sit yo’ ass down first thing and make a plan for when you’re going to “take your meds”.

Right now, it’s 11:30. I’m still way behind on my tasks for the day, but I’ve done my reading and emailing.

Two down, two to go…

Speak soon,

John