How to manage sick leave as a freelancer.

Freelancing is a cool thing where you get to decide what you want to work on, with whom, and when.

But most interestingly, when not?

You have to plan the day accordingly and leave some space in case you feel down.

Well, sickness does come uninvited, and always when you desperately don’t want it.

Bad luck! But what can we do about it?

The client wants the work done. If you can’t do it, he will find someone else to do it.

But as a freelancer, how should you manage your sick days?

Take Care of your Health

Prevention is better the cure. The above adage holds the wisdom of truth and life.

If you manage your day effectively, you can sort out your life and protect yourself from stress. Stress causes anxiety that further deteriorates your health. Your mental health holds the key to maintaining your physical health.

Telling from personal experience, if you not doing well mentally your physical health will ultimately take a toll and so will your freelancing career.

So, folks, take care of yourself because nobody cares about you more than yourself.

Do not overestimate in case you are feeling down

We all get the sign before experiencing full-blown symptoms. And as careless as we are, we always ignore them and neglect ourselves. We enjoy thinking that we are special and that we can pull it off.

But we forgot we are humans and there is a limit to what we can do. A piece of advice, never bid on or commit to a project if you are feeling a bit low on energy. Take some time off. Replenish your energy and your health.

After that, you can make up for the missing days with more vigor and nobody is stopping you.

Take your time through the sickness

Now that you haven’t listened to the above-mentioned advice, you got sick.

What to do next?

No problem.

Just do what you did not do before. Take some time off.

You are not some superhuman with some supernatural powers. Your mind needs some time to rest. And without it, it cannot function optimally.

So, if you are sick, consult a doctor. Take your medicine. And never work through your sickness. Extra stress is never going to make you get better sooner.

Take a break and spend some time with your loved ones. Think of it as a break provided by nature to you.

Effectively communicate with your client

As I mentioned earlier, never take on more work with the hope that you can pull it off. In case you have a pre-committed project, and you must deliver it, don’t panic, and take responsibility.

Inform your client about your condition and explain to him that at the committed time, you cannot make it but you will complete it at the earliest when you are feeling better. A day or two will do.

After getting informed. there are only two outcomes. Either he will extend the deadline, or he will cancel it.

Either way, your professionalism remains intact, and he may choose you for his future tasks. There is always a silver lining. Isn’t it?

Delegate your task if possible

Freelancers have a community. We know each other and there is always one person to rely on.

If not, look for one.

If you cannot deliver your task on time due to sickness, ask your colleague or friend freelancer to help you to do it for you.

Later you can compensate him accordingly. And do his work when he needs help.

This way you can take a day off without worry. On the better side, your client will get his work done. Win-win for everyone.

Always plan ahead of time

In the time management article, we discussed the importance and essentials of making a timetable.

Never forget to give yourself some space. So that you can cover for days you are sick. Freelancers do not have the privilege of sick leave as office workers do.

So, you need to sort out everything before the actual sickness strikes you. Leave some days and plan your week/month accordingly.

Save some cash for the sick leave period.

Always have some cash stashed away for this troubled time. For freelancers time is money. And if you are sick, you are not working, it means no earning too.

So, make sure you have some savings or health insurance to cover your expenses while you are taking some time off.


Everybody can get sick at any time. Sickness never knocks your door before taking you down, so you must stay prepared for it.

Live through it and recover your health before resuming freelancing. Your health comes first and then everything else.

Plan it, rest, rehydrate, and after getting well, go on with your freelancing.

As I said earlier, nobody is stopping you.

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