In this guest article, Ryan Rivera shares six ways to cope with some of the stress that comes from being a freelance photographers. I hope you walk away from this article with some new thoughts going through your mind on how to manage your own stress.
Freelance photography is an exciting field to work on. You get to do the thing that you love most without the stress of having someone bossing you around. No one will tell you why you have been taking too much time off of work. However, a source of anxiety is the fact that you tend to earn less money in this kind of work. Freelance photography is not without stressful situations and for you to survive you need to overcome it. Here are some of the coping mechanisms that you can use to become an ace in this field.
Have a passion for the work
Having a passion means that you enjoy doing photography in the first place. The enjoyment will make you survive the challenges and demands of the field. If you enjoy what you do it makes the work worthwhile. Fan the flames that make you want to do more photography. A wise Chinese philosopher once said choose a job that you like and you will never work anymore. A passionate photographer is also concerned with the craft; the result is better quality.
Have a budget
As mentioned before, freelance photography can become a drain on the pocket. This is true when you are just starting. Money is like an oasis in the middle of the desert and it is easy to be discouraged especially when you begin to see the bottom of your wallet. Plan your finances wisely and maximize your resources. Stress builds when you are gasping for financial air. Beat the financial drain by making sure that you can cover all the bases.
Getting less work
One of the main stress generators is having few clients. It creates anxiety, which leads people to abandon their work as freelancers. Remember, tons and tons of work coming is not permanent so is a dry spell. Use the downtime in making sure that the world knows that you are available to do tasks for them. Build your own portfolio, so the next time a potential client comes in you have a sturdier portfolio to show.
Getting a lot of work
A complete opposite of what was mentioned earlier; getting more than you can handle also create stress. It is important that accept tasks that will not overburden you. It is easy to lose focus and sacrifice quality if you are swamped and pressured. Take time to assess and provide allowances to the tasks that you accept. Allowing some leeway in between jobs means you get time to relax a bit.
Expect them so you would not lose sleep thinking why there are people like them. It happens and the faster you accept it the better you cope with the situation. Sometimes, it may be difficult to avoid unreasonable clients especially when you are in dire need of clients. But, learn to deal with them in the most professional manner possible. Always remember that your clients will serve as your best and most credible endorsers of your craft.
Exercise and diet
Being so engrossed with the job could easily make you neglect your own health. Proper diet and exercise are your first line of defense against the stress and pressure of being a freelance photographer. Make sure that you always keep tabs on your health. See to it that you maintain a healthy lifestyle. Photographers often receive a lot of invitations to special events and gatherings that usually happen at night. This will also expose them to late night parties and to sleep deprivation. This is when you have to be watchful of your health and wellness. Otherwise, you will put your health and career at risk.
If you need to invest on expensive cameras and other useful gadgets, check on your finances first. Avoid the temptation of frequently using your credits cards in purchasing these high-end camera lenses and other equipment. Use your credit cards sparingly otherwise you run the risk of suffering from financial anxiety due to enormous credit card debts.
Being a freelance photographer can become an exciting phase in your career. You get to expand the limits of your craft and learn along the way. Learning to cope with stressful situations means opening up with better opportunities ahead.
Ryan Rivera used to suffer from panic attacks for seven years. He now dedicates his life helping those who suffer from stress, anxiety, panic attacks and depression through his writings. You can read more of his articles at Calm Clinic.