What do you do when the work dries up? If you are a freelancer or your contract is over and you don’t have another one to go to immediately or you have been laid off what do you do? We are living in difficult times. I am in this very situation at the moment, I am a freelancer and the company I have been working at has stopped using any freelancers so I am not working. Not working is a very stressful situation, if you have not been in such a position; you probably don’t what it is truly like.
I have become somewhat a recluse. I am afraid of leaving my flat in fear of spending what savings I have. So I have thought of a few tips for us temporarily unemployed.
1. Keep up with your work contacts. This is vital no matter how low you are feeling because so many opportunities come via word of mouth. Try to plan all your meetings, coffees, lunches for the same day or as many a day as possible so you are only paying for a single day’s travel. Bring snacks so you are not starving and spend too much on lunch.
2. Make sure you get up at a ‘normal’ time. It is so easy to slip into nightclub hours and sleep in until noon. I am sure there is something that you have been putting off to do aroung the house. How about cleaning out that closet and putting some stuff on Ebay?
3. Get dressed. Don’t make business calls in your dressing gown. Shower and dress like you are going somewhere. If you don’t fancy putting on full makeup, how about just putting on some lipstick? It really brightens you mood.
4. When you are making those vital business calls; smile. People can tell you mood and no one wants to give a job to a misery guts.
5. Think of things to get you out of the house without spending money. I visit my local library, take walks, buy fruit and veg at the street market, which is cheaper than the supermarket. Do you have any other ideas of free things to do when the money is super scarce? Don’t go window-shopping, as it will just make you more depressed at the things you can’t afford.
6. Stay away from daytime television. It eats time and dumbs you down. It is better to watch a film in the afternoon if you really don’t have any work tasks you can do but don’t indulge yourself too often.
7. Try to make jobs for yourself – when you need something done they say it is best to ask a busy person. I am so guilty of thinking I have all the time in the world, which is why I have not been writing on the twice a week schedule I originally made for myself. I am looking into projects besides finding work that will keep me busy. Being busy give you purpose which is the thing we lose when we are not working and it also gives you something to talk about at those work related lunches and coffees so people don’t think you are spending your time sitting in front of the TV.