Let Freedom Ring! (While at Work)

Wish upon the shooting stars...
Creative Commons License photo credit: tjroberts79

“Part of being creative is learning how to protect your freedom.” – Hugh Macleod

As we approach tomorrow’s holiday, I thought it would be appropriate to touch on the topic of personal freedoms. While we try not to blow our digits off tomorrow, America as a whole will be basking in her personal freedoms. While we’ve pretty much got the personal freedoms part sewed up, we don’t take a great deal in preserving our work freedoms. Let me explain with an example.

A close friend of mine asked me if I was going to be at my house around lunchtime, and I struggled to weigh the options. Sometimes I like to work at a local coffee shop/bookstore, while other times I camp out around the house. After a solid 20 seconds of me trying to make a decision had passed, my friend suddenly chuckled and replied, “Why am I even asking you? Who knows what you’ll feel like tomorrow.”

He couldn’t be any closer to the truth.

The power of freedom (in your job)

The beauty of being a freelancer is that while you still have to work like everyone else, the location doesn’t have to be important. Where you work can be a great shot of productivity for those wanting to add a little spice to your work day. But more importantly, there is something that every creative person should understand: adding variety and spontaneity to your day can adds a powerful shot of productivity and overall contentment.

Protect your work freedom: avoid unnecessary commitments

By trying to decide where I wanted to work the following day, I wasn’t taking into account that I might not feel like working at home the next day, even though it sounded like a good idea the night before. I was giving myself an unnecessary commitment. Sometimes it’s best to have a few things unplanned to your day. Spur of the moment decisions give a feeling of control that you might not normally have. And control is one of the main reasons that people become freelancers in the first place; nobody really likes being told what to do or how to do it. You have to protect this right, even from yourself at times. It’s quite easy to over-plan the day, suffocating your creativity.

So if you’re feeling a little bored and uninspired at work, try un-planning an aspect of your day and making a spontaneous decision later. A little freedom can go a long way.

Have a happy and safe holiday, everyone!

Glen

Leave a Comment

{ 9 comments… add one }
  • Malinda April 30, 2017, 6:05 am

    Thanks for writing such an eaeuot–yndsrstand article on this topic.

  • Ethan@Self Improvement Mentor July 13, 2008, 2:25 pm

    Like Adelle, I never thought about it that way too. Sometimes we are guilty of over-planning things. Planning what to do, when to do, how to do things for the next day/week etc. Great idea to add spontaneity and variety to increase our productivity. Definitely one of the best perks of being a freelancer!

  • Ethan@Self Improvement Mentor July 13, 2008, 10:25 am

    Like Adelle, I never thought about it that way too. Sometimes we are guilty of over-planning things. Planning what to do, when to do, how to do things for the next day/week etc. Great idea to add spontaneity and variety to increase our productivity. Definitely one of the best perks of being a freelancer!

  • Marc and Angel Hack Life July 10, 2008, 11:56 am

    …and never forget about the 80/20 rule! ;-)

  • Lindsay July 7, 2008, 3:32 am

    Yeah, for someone who works from home, you'll often find me… not at home. ;)

    Part of that is that I've got a way of making a living that doesn't require a lot of work every day, but part is just that I do my best thinking when I'm out skating, biking, or walking the dog. I throw on some music and work out a problem in my head, or I'll listen to podcasts or audiobooks that teach me something or motivate me to try new things.

    Also, it's nice to get off the computer and out of the office frequently. :)

  • Shanel Yang July 3, 2008, 2:58 pm

    A big fat “amen” to that! Happy Holiday to you, too, Glen!

  • Anand Dhillon July 3, 2008, 1:50 pm

    Good point. On the one hand I think you should honor all the commitments that you make and at the same time, you should avoid making commitments that aren't needed.

  • adelle July 3, 2008, 1:31 pm

    great advice to follow! Never thought of it that way – but so true!

  • Lauren - OfficeArrow July 3, 2008, 12:58 pm

    Great suggestion Glen!!
    There's something very appealing to me about making plans just to break them.
    And I love having any kind of variety at work. I've been working for a small company for the last month and I never know what I'll be handed next. Variety truly is the spice of life.