Wherever you see, you will find someone suggesting how good it is to start freelancing. The hustle culture consistently promotes the idea of having multiple sources of income. While it is understandable why people need more than one source of income, they are not informed how exhausting it can get.
There are two types of people. One is against the idea of hustling and the second is desperate to make more money. Neither of the two realises that hustling does not mean working all the time.
Sometimes, your relationship with freelancing and hustling can get toxic without you even realising it. Here are the signs you need to look for to understand that it’s time to take a long break from freelancing.
You Barely Have Time for Yourself
You already have a full-time job and you are freelancing on the side, still, you need to have time for yourself. That is how freelancing and hustling work. Jumping from one project to another without giving yourself the time to breathe is a sign that your relationship with freelancing is becoming toxic.
You need to be your first priority. Respect your health, hobbies, and personal space even when you are freelancing.
You Are Never Satisfied With the Results
Even though you know how far you have come, you are never happy with the results. You want more, you expect better results but you don’t appreciate the good results you are getting at the moment. You are neither acknowledging nor celebrating your efforts and success. This is a sign that your relationship with freelancing is toxic.
You started as an absolute newbie, today you have at least 1 client. You are working and you are getting paid. You are learning and your client is happy with your work and services. This may not be your ultimate goal but this is a milestone that you needed to meet and you are there. You need to get satisfied with what you have even when you are planning to grow. This is called living in the moment
You Are Always Stressing About the Next Step
Stress. The keyword here is stress. You are stressing about the future all the time. Even when you have plans and goals regarding your freelancing career, you should not feel stressed, at least not always. It is your side hustle and, if anything, it is supposed to give you pleasure, happiness, and extra cash.
If your freelancing career adds to your stress more than it should and you are always concerned about what next needs to be done, you are entering the toxic phase in your relationship with freelancing.
You Believe Hustling Is Supposed to be Hard
Surprisingly, a lot of people believe this. No, hustling is not supposed to be hard. Just because you are making another source of income does not mean you are supposed to make it difficult. Don’t forget you are working on your passion and working on your passion should feel good, not hard.
Of course, you will have to learn time management and in the initial stages you will be trying and testing different routines and working styles which may seem a little hard but after that stage, it should stop feeling that way.
Hustling, unlike people suggest, is not supposed to be hard. Neither is it supposed to be a walk on the cake. No, you can’t earn multiple lakhs by working only two hours a day, and no you don’t have to invest 18 hours a day for years to earn that kind of money either.
You Don’t Enjoy the Process
It is supposed to be fun to earn money from any source. You are supposed to enjoy everything you do in life. From studying to working under someone and working for yourself as a freelancer, everything you do is supposed to be fun. That is what will make it a long-lasting part of your life.
When you are working as a freelancer, you should be enjoying every part and work of being a freelancer. From sending cold emails to landing clients, working for them, editing, and getting feedback, the whole process is supposed to be enjoyed. That’s what is going to get you money after all. If you stop enjoying the process suddenly, the reason might be that you are working more than you should or you are exhausted, which is a sign that your relationship with freelancing is becoming toxic.
Resting and Taking a Break Feels Like a Crime
Resting is an inevitable part of your routine. Taking a break every now and then will help you get over the stress and exhaustion and resume working with a higher and better energy level. You should not beat yourself for taking a break. You should not feel bad for taking some rest.
Unknowingly, a lot of people start feeling bad for taking breaks and consider it a waste of time. They start thinking about how they could have earned more had they not taken a break or had they worked more and harder. When you start feeling this way, understand that you have started moving on the wrong track and it’s time to come back.
You Are Only Focused on the Income
Your hustle is supposed to be something you enjoy and feel you are good at. People freelance their passion as services because that is something they can do for the rest of their lives without feeling bored. The purpose behind choosing passion as a side hustle is that even if they are not earning, they are still feeling good because they are working on something they like. That is how hustling and freelancing are supposed to feel.
If your focus changes from everything else to income, you have stopped enjoying and your passion has probably died. Now freelancing has become just another work for you and believe it or not, this is what can make your relationship with freelancing toxic.
There is no doubt that you should be earning a decent income through freelancing but that should not be your only focus. If you have entirely shifted towards money from everything else, you are making your relationship with freelancing toxic.
The hustle culture that asks you to work all the time and give up on yourself is toxic and it shouldn’t be promoted at all. Content creators are creating “funny” content around having zero boundaries as a freelancer. According to us, they are on the wrong track and shouldn’t present it in a positive light.
Hustlepost Academy is absolutely against the toxic hustle culture and we only promote healthy, inspiring, and enjoyable hustling. In our course “Side Hustle Formula” we teach how you can build a side hustle without giving up on your life, happiness, and mental peace.