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Loneliness in self-employment – and how to combat it

Successes with others and figure out how to learn from mistakes. Even if you don’t have too much to report, having a chat and sharing advice is a great way to socialise after a busy week at the desk. Find a co-working space If you’re missing your co-workers’ presence and break-time chats about the latest TV shows or books you’ve been binging, then a co-working space is a fantastic way to feel the benefits of social time while staying focused on your work. If this speaks to you, then beat the procrastination and meet together at our No Procrastination Station Days, where we provide the perfect balance of coffee, chats, and dedicated head down time at the desk. This is especially ideal for those tasks you’ve been putting off, for instance you could set aside a day for paperwork or other admin that would be head-achingly tedious to do in a space all by yourself. Like networking, it’s also a great way to meet potential new collaborators or clients and expanding your list of referrals –never a bad thing in the business world! Listen to podcasts or music. Maybe you’ve got too much on to set time aside for networking or co-working some days, but there are other ways to feel less isolated. Podcasts are great for filling in for the white noise and background chatter of an office space, and music can give you a boost of energy to help mitigate the tedium of repetitive tasks.

One of the benefits of being self-employed is that there are no pressures from the company or higher-ups to ‘look professional’ at your desk, so take advantage of the freedom to bop along to some beats or laugh out loud at a funny episode of your favourite podcast. Schedule meetings It can be easy and convenient to reduce all interactions with clients and collaborators to email or text, but it can be nice (as well as useful!) to schedule meetings, either face-to-face or via video call. It’s a great way to build better relationships, communicate more clearly and directly, and gain a little mood and confidence boost from being able to speak more personably than email or text allow. Make sure to set up regular meetings to beat that loneliness, with the added bonus of ensuring everyone is on the same page about whatever task or project you’re working on. Make time for hobbies and work/life balance. One of the main disadvantages of not having contracted work hours is that work can easily bleed into your downtime. This is why it’s so crucial to maintain a work/life balance, and the benefit of self-employment is that you can go out for some fresh air and a breather whenever you like. Make sure to take regular breaks and carve out allocated time for hobbies (especially if you have group hobbies!), seeing friends and family, and self-care. It can be easy to let yourself stay glued to the desk, but at the end of the day, you, your health, and your ability to work will benefit from maintaining a proper work/life balance. Ultimately, loneliness is not a permanent state and can be remedied by setting aside the time to start conversations and socialise with other people. Even if you are incredibly busy as a self-employed person – which is likely as you have a whole business to run! – thankfully, there are plenty of ways to feel the benefit of other people’s company while staying focused and productive. Feel free to reach out to us if you’re interested in benefitting from our events and co-working spaces – we’re always keen to meet new people!

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