Challenge #5: Managing Feelings of Loneliness

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Possibly the nicest thing about working in an office is the people you work with. It’s great to have a team, grab coffee with a colleague or have a drink after work to discuss and brainstorm your workload. You’ll work hard together on a tough deadline and then celebrate when it’s over. There will be Christmas parties, team events and even birthday cupcakes. You may not get along with every one of your colleagues, but having people around you can be both comforting and stimulating.

Working for yourself? You guessed it: no dream team, no one to complain to when something doesn’t work or to celebrate with when it does. Nobody brings in cake to the office, nobody chats at the coffee machine and nobody asks to grab a beer after work. When you’re working for yourself, you can go for days without meeting anyone face-to-face.

The solution: Pull yourself together and put some pants on!

Missing the social side of office life might be the hardest thing to deal with when you’re working by yourself. But don’t suffer in silence!

Depending on exactly what you’re missing, here are some ways to deal with your loneliness:

  • Find a co-working space to simulate an office environment. You may also be able to take on bigger projects and spend time in your client’s office for a longer period of time.
  • Conferences and industry events can be good for meeting like-minded people, or you can join a professional club or organization.
  • Make sure you’re getting in those after-work drinks, dates and calling/meeting regularly with your family.

Just make sure that you get out of those PJs and you actually leave the house now and then! Seriously!