Applying Marathon Principles to Freelance Life

Lovingly Lifted from Dimitri_C (http://www.sxc.hu/profile/dimitri_c)

Day 38-

I’m a freelancer at heart, and this means a lot of different things to a lot of different people. Unfortunately, I can’t seem to accurately define it when I’m looking for my next “client” or my next “project” and instead I get hired for another job, which wasn’t my original intention. I recently took a position in which I will be traveling by air two times a week in order to take on the role of a Senior UI/IA Designer in a very big redesign of a large e-commerce site south of where I reside (vague right?). While I was excited about what this meant, I wasn’t excited that it was the dreaded 9-5*.
* Some days end at 5:30-7 but I have off on Fridays.

Seems like a sweet deal right? I get to fly on a plane every Monday and Thursday for the next 10 weeks and enjoy being in a cushy hotel as my temporary residence, with a team I have never met before, doing something that I “love”, with a company that is well known and will look great on my resume. (although I’m starting to doubt the importance of a resume) So why am I depressed about the whole situation?

No, I mean, I’m honestly depressed. Clinically. Why is that?

I started to wonder if it was something in me that isn’t wired right, that didn’t allow me to smell the roses, and pick up a couple along my way? Is it that dress clothes make me itch as I’m used to lounging around in my pajamas comfortably on a daily basis? Or maybe it’s that the work is so easy I tend to wonder why the “Senior” roles in this country, and the easiest jobs get paid ridiculous salaries? (I am one of those people in this short time). Or perhaps I have felt like I abandoned what I truly stood for and that’s running after your passion, being happy every day, not regretting each day, and reaching for the best possible situation you can put yourself in?

Whether I have come to an answer or not, I could develop a hefty list of things that make my eye twitch about this place, but what good would that do? Instead I needed to apply some type of life principle to my journey or I would jump out the window. When I tweeted about my experience, someone mentioned marathons, and how I need to apply the principles of a marathon run, pacing myself, and realizing that I needed to finish this race out and practice and develop endurance.

I ran across this blog that suggested marathon running help out with the stresses of life. He stated:

“Often being “overwhelmed” with work is not a matter of having too much work as much as not having a plan by which to do it.”

I took this as meaning the reason why I may be depressed, feeling like no one gets me, or feeling alone is that I’m just going through this “race” blindly. The more I make a plan (since I have so much down time anyway during my time here), the more my days may actually be of some type of value and substance. I don’t relate with anyone here (yet), and it’s hard to be the one “against the grain” (not getting the corporate life or wanting to be a work horse. I like to work smarter, not harder). Or the one catching up at the last minute, when everyone has been running the race. I’ve been called a turtle for a long time in my life, but it’s time that I actually embrace it, make my plan, document my journey and try to survive. I know I will hit obstacles along the way, pretty hefty ones, but I hope to encourage others in this journey, and grow from this experience.

It’s going to be hard, but not impossible.

Comments (1)
  • Mar

    March 28, 2012

    Would it be accurate to say:A eneflarcer does all the pratical work, whereas an entrepreneur will find a way to outsource the work whether that be via an employee,software or manufacturer.I have a number of ideas that will mean me making money whilst I sleep. Thankfully some domain issues have started to clear up so I can get to work in the next week once they are transfered.

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