Freelance Writing is Turning Me into a Potato

Questions you need to ask yourself before working remotely

Benjamin Davis
May 9 · 3 min read

I began working remote freelance nearly one year ago. In that time, I have visited a physical therapist six times, a nutritionist ten times, a proctologist more times than I’m willing to admit, and I have visited the gym exactly zero times. My best friend is a pair of sweatpants named Susan.

Recently I began to wonder if maybe remote work is not for me. I’ve designed a quiz for others to make up their own mind:

How much do you like sweatpants?

a. I prefer to work in jeans or a suit if it’s all the same to you.

b. If Netflix is on, I’ll get snug with some sweatpants.

c. The checkout lady at Walmart texts me when a new style arrives.

If you answered a or b, you’ll be fine. If you answered c. tread carefully. Sweatpants are the sirens in the water of remote work. If you are lured in by them, they’ll drown you mercilessly.

How much do you like people?

a. A lot.

b. A little.

c. They are the worst thing to happen to the world since pointy rocks

If you answered a or b, you might want to make sure you’ve got a solid social circle before delving into remote work.

If you answered c. Welcome, coffee is over there by Beth. Don’t get too close to Beth. She bites.

How good are you at controlling your diet?

a. Very good — Happy days, go for it.

b. So-so — Download an app and avoid the junk-food isle.

c. Terrible — welcome to the club. We’re supposed to meet every Wednesday, but no one can be fucked to get out of bed.

When you stare at your Facebook feed for over an hour do you feel?

a. Delighted — bless you. Have fun with freelance.

b. Bored — fair. You’ll survive.

c. Disgusted — Do something else. Anything else. The entire internet is just one big Facebook feed. That is the internet’s dark secret.

Are you able to force yourself to exercise?

a. I’m at the gym everyday baby

b. I make it there a couple times a week without prompting from Alexa

c. If by gym you mean lifting the Styrofoam boxes containing chicken wings from the bottom shelf of my fridge, then yeah — I’m a gym-nut.

Do you have access to a physical therapist?

a. Nope, never had any physical ailments

b. I see them sometimes when my body isn’t feeling right.

c. Her name is Karen. She has two dogs named Mick and Ho-ho. We have a standing appointment every Tuesday and Thursday.

If you answered “C” to either of those last two questions, seriously reconsider your freelancing dreams.

Freelance writing can be a great way to spend more time with family and have the freedom to make your own schedule if you are the type of person who has the ability to exercise self-control and plan well. It is important to exercise, eat right and socialize without prompting. If you are able to handle all of this, go for it, but be warned:

God and evolution only agree on one thing: human beings were not meant to live their life sitting at a computer.

Your ass knows this.

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Benjamin Davis

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My writing is like watching Roy Orbison eat a bundle of mismatched socks. No, they have not been washed in a while. Yes, he is crying.

The Startup

Medium's largest active publication, followed by +479K people. Follow to join our community.