ASK US WEDNESDAY: “How DO lonely freelancers celebrate the festive season?”  

by Leo Wiles
06 December 2017

It’s my first year as a freelancer and I’m finding it quite depressing having been invited to ZERO Christmas parties, mainly because I’m no longer in-house. What do other freelancers do this time of year?! K

I hear you, K; without an organised office Christmas party to automatically bring you and ‘your colleagues’ together, a festive celebration can seem like the freelancer’s version of Mission: Impossible. And, it’s true that you kind of have to make your own fun when you work from a home office of 1 person (and possibly a cat who refuses to wear a festive hat or pull a cracker).

And while we’re often in contact with hundreds of people every week on the phone, via email and on social media, I’ll bet many of us are guilty of not often reaching out in person. So this time of year is a great time to do it.

  1. Get the ball rolling yourself by picking a pub or restaurant and sending an official invite to other freelancers you know. It can be as simple as pre-Xmas drinks, but just feeling like you’re vibing with your tribe in the midst of Xmas party mayhem can really bust through that isolated feeling.
  2. Join freelancer groups such as Freelance Jungle on Facebook or the Sandpit, which have regular meet-ups. Being part of writerly FB groups is a great way to suggest those in your area meet up in person. Ask your mates which freelancer groups they’re in (and don’t forget our Gold Community if you have Gold Membership at Rachel’s List).
  3. Check out the MEAA to find out when the Christmas drinks networking night is in your State.
  4. Make a plan to work one day a week with other living-breathing people in a co-working space like this one. Chances are you’ll meet people AND be invited to a couple of Chrissy parties.
  5. Make a list and thank your loyal, regular fabulous clients – either with a handwritten card and small gift or with an in person call. Who knows? It could lead to a lunch date or invite to their Xmas party.
  6. Check Meetup in your local area to find a group dedicated to something you love doing.
  7. Treat yourself to a creative course as a pre-Christmas present – there are a few on our gift guide from a few weeks ago. A fab way to learn a new skill and meet other fabulously crafty people.

You can also read more on this topic and other challenges freelancers face at Christmas here, here, here and here.

How do you celebrate Christmas as a freelancer? Do you plan a mince-pie noshing sesh with your posse or just enjoy the peace and lack of a hangover?

Leo Wiles

Leo Wiles has worked as an editor, journalist and PR for over 20 years before recently retraining as a photographer. These days, she spends her time behind a lens, juggling her own clients with her work at Rachel's List, and her three gorgeous but lively kids.
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2 responses on "ASK US WEDNESDAY: “How DO lonely freelancers celebrate the festive season?”  "

  1. My co-working space has organised not one but two Christmas parties – one for co-working members and the other for any freelancers in the country town I live in, so that feels pretty special.
    Reading this list reminds me that I still haven’t bought a couple of items from your Christmas list – need to get onto that!

    1. Rachel Smith says:

      How awesome Lindy. It’s probably even more necessary for freelancers to get out of the garret and socialise at Christmas, given the isolated nature of what we do. I love the idea of co-working spaces for giving you that sense of office camaraderie (albeit without the boss breathing down your neck!)

      I’m guessing you’ll be doing some baking for the Chrissy shindig? 🙂

      PS. I’ve already bought some stuff off the Xmas gift guide and tomorrow I’m heading to a Christmas market; I’ve missed all the ones in Sydney this year but I’m determined to make at least one!

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