One of the great things about being a freelancer, is the freedom that comes with having chosen this career path. As a freelancer you can take to the road when you need, and the best part is, that you can also take your job with you! Now this is conditional on being able to put together the proper toolkit to take with you on your journey.
The freelancer must be as prepared as a scout for any situation they may face when breaking out of their ‘Lance-Cave’ (which is like the Bat-Cave, only slightly less cool often accompanied by the aroma of stale food and energy drinks). So we wanted to help out with this element of freelancing and give a few pointers on what to pack as you venture out on the road. Below are the freelancer ‘must-haves’ that we feel are necessities whenever we leave the comfort of our home.
Naturally if you are going to work, then you need access to your computer loaded with your different programs that you keep you functional from wherever it is you roam, so you are going to generally need a laptop to take with you. Even if your main computer is a desktop, if you plan to take your business on the road, a laptop just may be one of the wisest career investments that you can make. Make sure that you can stay connected with your professional contacts and colleagues, and keep from falling behind without the hassle of having to find a way to drag your desktop computer along with you.
A Reliable Internet Connection
Now in the interest of keeping in touch, since social media tends to play a large role in this area of the freelancer’s life, a reliable internet connection is a must! You want to make sure that when you need to access the world wide web…you can. This can sometimes be taken for granted by the more technological savy nowadays. The internet has become such a basic part of our lives that we just figure whichever road we take will have an open wi-fi signal on every street corner just waiting to stream you onto the world wide web.
Another great means of keeping in constant contact with your most important files, is to use some form of online storage so that you may be able to access them from other systems besides your own. This can prove a beneficial backup should something happen to your hardrive while you are away from home, so that you can limit your downtime as much as possible, and maintain as much of the workflow as you can should anything unforeseen befall you or your files. Viruses and simple corruption of files can aggravatingly grind your work to an unexpected hault while away from your fortress of freelancitude.
Multi-Plug Extension Cord
Another important toolkit addition that tends to slip passed many a mind, is the packing of a multiplug extension cord. Owing to the fact that in a lot of hotels the number of electrical outlets that you have access to are oft times scarce or inconveniently placed, especially if you have a couple of extra plugs that you need to power along with your laptop like we have run into a time or two when out and about. This allows for you to focus more on comfort over convenience when you have to set up your workstation.
The Ability to Let Go
The final bit for your kit would have to be the ability for the freelancer who cuts loose to also fully let go! This is an important thing to remember overall, but it really applies in this situation. For once you break free from the little nook you have worked hard to carve from the fabric of society, you will have to be able to relax and relinquish a little bit of the control over your environment that we tend to like to maintain. It may not be the easiest element to take with you on the road, but it may be the one that keeps you the most sane, as very little of your immediate environment is truly in your hands while away from home.
That’s Your Pack
Those are our top five tools to take along with you as you try freelancing from the road. What would you add to your toolkit to make sure that you could keep on track while trekking? Leave us a comment below to let us know.
Rob is the talented author and graphic designer, celebrated podcaster and poet, who is now the co-editor and imaginative co-contributor of Fuel Your Creativity. With a background working through most areas of the arts, Rob works from a creative wellspring that shows no signs of running dry.