For myself, I spend more than 10 hours per day sitting at my desk writing for my websites while creating content for clients. Not everyone can handle sitting for extended periods of time in front of a computer screen. In fact, there are many times throughout the day that I need to get up and move around as my knees begin to hurt. Luckily, you don’t need to plant yourself in your chair for hours at a time in order to be successful.
How to Be a Successful Freelance Writer without Gluing Yourself to Your Chair
If you’re interested in becoming a full time freelance writer, you’re going to need the capacity to complete enough work throughout your day in order to make a reasonable income. This means you’ll need to spend quality time in front of your computer. However, you don’t need to spend that quality time all at once. What can you do in order to keep writing throughout the day without causing damage to yourself or getting headaches from looking at the computer screen for long periods of time?
- Break up the day
- Adjust the contrast and brightness on the monitor
- Get a comfortable chair
- Consider standing desks
- Design your workspace for ergonomics
Breaking Up Your Day
Instead of writing for several hours continuously, break up the day to give yourself a bit of physical activity in order to move those muscles and get the blood pumping. Personally, I’ll do 20 minutes of hardcore vigorous house cleaning in the middle of the day. I also get up every hour or so and walk around the house or go for a short bike ride around the block. Sitting for too long is bad for your back and joints. Periodically get up and move around.
Adjust the Settings on the Monitor
Monitors that are too bright can affect your ability to remain focused. Even I will get headaches every once in a while from looking at my dual-monitor setup. Use the settings on the monitor to decrease the brightness to a comfortable level. This can greatly help you keep your mind on writing and not fighting pain from eye-strain.
Get a Comfortable Chair
I cannot explain how much getting a new chair has helped me throughout the day. Instead of getting back pain often, I feel great while I write. It was worth the money we spent to get me a decent office chair. While the cheap chairs from Walmart can give you something to sit on, a more expensive ergonomic chair from Costco can make all the difference.
Consider Standing Desks
Standing desks are growing in popularity. Usually these desks can transform from a traditional area you sit at to a taller unit allowing you to stand. Many people relish in the idea of standing desks as it is more healthy and helps eliminate calories for weight loss as standing is more of an exercise as opposed to sitting.
Designing Your Workspace for Ergonomics
Many people don’t realize just how the workspace can greatly affect your comfort level when writing for several hours per day. Monitor positions, your access to the keyboard and mouse, the ambient lighting and more play a role in maintaining your comfort level. For instance: Your keyboard and mouse should be level with your elbows when sitting. Having your monitor sitting too high can put a strain on your neck and back when looking up. These are just a few items in your workspace that can be causing you discomfort when working.
If you’re not comfortable in your surroundings, it will affect your quality of work. Personally, I view breaking up the day as one of the most important aspects of writing from home. For myself, I spread out six hours of writing across more than 10 hours. I take regular hour-long breaks in order to revitalize my body. You don’t have to glue your butt in the chair in order to remain successful. As long as you can meet your own personal goals each day, you’ll do fine.