If there is something a freelance translator knows is that their working days are not conventional. While formal employees work Monday through Friday, a freelance translator works beyond that. Sometimes it is impossible to know the difference between a week day and a weekend because freelance translators also work on weekends (and other times, holidays are also included in “the package”).
Do you think this is a good thing? Do you mind working on weekends instead of going out for a picnic or enjoying some time with your family?
When I started my translation career I simply did not care about weekends and holidays. I did not mind about working during the weekend. My thoughts were focused on two things: to make my client´s happy and to meet all deadlines. Was I forgetting something? Yes, absolutely. I was forgetting about my personal life, my husband. my family and my own health. Do I do that nowadays? Yes I still do, however, today I am much more selective and I learned the hard way how to balance my work-life.
Whenever you receive a job on a Friday afternoon that needs to be delivered on a Sunday night or Monday morning, you need to stop and think seriously about it. Is it worth it? Is it something you feel like doing? Are you too tired for that? Are you ready to avoid spending time with your beloved family and friends and spend a whole weekend in front of the PC? As you can see, there are many other things involved in this decision besides just money. It is also understandable that sometimes you really need to work on weekends because you are already translating an ongoing project and need to finish it on time. The key is finding the balance between your personal and professional life when working from home.
The Bright side of working on weekends…
Although we need to learn how to balance our work-life, I have to confess that today I am used to working on weekends (in a healthy and balanced manner).
Do not take me wrong, I am still very happy when I do not have to do that, and I do enjoy going out and have my personal life. However, as a freelance translator I know that sometimes it is hard to “turn off” and keep myself away from the PC on free weekends. I do believe that many freelance translators also agree with me.
Now the question is: what is the point of working on weekends when you do not have a real job to do? You may not have any work to do for your clients, but you always have to work for yourself. Marketing, accounting and improving your resume or even your professional profile are some examples. There is a bright side of working on weekends, and working for yourself is always worth it. You may not make any money, but you certainly are improving your business and building a more productive future. Just do not forget to live too!