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Down Time

Yan Yan Chan

At home, with FCUK. [collaboration]

Photographed by Yasmin Suteja


Working freelance sounds easy, but when you're your own boss - it's easy to lose motivation, and sometimes you forget when to switch on, and when to switch off. It's a little easier when your other half also works for themselves.. we've teamed up on a few notes on how to keep on top of deadlines, when to switch off and how important a work - life balance is.

Bomber jacket and pleated skirt by FCUK / Photographed on 35mm.

Bomber jacket and pleated skirt by FCUK / Photographed on 35mm.


Creative by Yasmin Suteja and Yan Yan Chan


Notes on freelance life;

  • Staying organised - This is probably the most obvious tip and one you'll hear over and over again. But it's also something a lot of people tend to forget about, or are too lazy to do. I can't stress enough, how important being organised is and always thinking and planning ahead. The easiest way I've come to being organised is writing everything down on paper. I rely on my laptop and phone for emails and reminders, but when it comes to scheduling, keeping track of deadlines and brainstorming shoot ideas, writing them all down in a notepad and diary is what helps me the most. I have a "to do" notebook, where I write everything out in list form, so when it comes to completing tasks I can cross them off as I go. As for everyday deadlines, meetings or events I write them all down in my weekly diary. If I have a month of travelling and shooting, I like printing out the iCalendar from my laptop and highlighting important days. 
  • Having a routine - The hardest thing about being freelance is having a routine; you can wake up whenever you want & work from wherever you want. Every day is a different day. Some days I'll spend the entire day at the uni library catching up with emails and scheduling blog posts, if not I'll be shooting, filming or even having a boozy lunch with clients haha. The easiest way of creating a routine is having a morning priority and sectioning out 1-2 hours of the day to emails. For me, my morning routine is always doing a gym class first thing in the morning, then spending a few hours catching up on emails. That way I can get every I really need to do out of the way. As for shooting content, I always make sure I keep at least 2 days of the week free for this. 
  • Separating personal and work life -  I find it difficult separating my personal and work life as I occasionally will work from home and a lot of the times when it comes to collaborating, working with friends will be the occasion. The biggest lesson I've learnt from the past few months is always keeping the two seperate. I can't stress this enough. My number one rule is that if I'm at home, I'm not thinking or talking about work and as for working with friends.. it's true when they say never mix business with pleasure. 
  • DOWN TIME. It is SO important to switch off and spend time with friends, family and your partner and be engaged with the present life. Keeping the phone out of sight when having a meal with someone, watching a movie and nothing else, going to the beach without your phone for a few hours.. There's nothing more satisfying than being completely engaged in a conversation and turning off all forms of notifications. When it comes to the weekend, we always make sure to spoil ourselves a little and spend as much time doing things that we love and make us happy. 

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