After seeing the current trend of freelancing, researchers have conducted a study on how freelancing affects health and lifestyle. According to the new study, the state of mind and well-being fluctuates with the fluctuating working hours. Longer working hours makes freelancers happier, more enthusiastic and calmer when compared to their normal working counterparts.
The study was based on analysis of 45 freelance workers over a period of six months. Every participant was asked to give a self-analysis report at the end of every week, observing which researchers concluded that freelance workers are calmer and more enthusiastic when the workload is increased. However, the same is not true for the freelancers when the workload exceeds certain limit and it becomes increasingly difficult to complete the task within time constraints, at that moment anxiety level increases and freelance workers might even suffer depression.
“Increased demands adversely affect people’s work-life balance; in particular work interferes with fulfilling family and other non-work commitments or pursuits,” sad lead study author Stephen Wood from the University of Leicester. “Demands generate what has long been called stress-based work-family/non-work interference but hours generate a largely unrecognized phenomenon, enthusiasm-based work-family/non-work interference.”
Theory of long hours increasing enthusiasm and making people happier might be limited to people who earn on hourly basis or the amount of hard work they put in. In addition, researchers explained that when workload increases then freelancers start getting the feeling that they will miss the deadlines which decreases enthusiasm and makes them depressed.
However, it was noticed that both freelance workers and normal office going workers feel the same pressure when it comes to completing their task. Extra work also affects the family life of freelancers that further adds to the worsening situation, but in many of the cases it can make them calmer which might have opposite effect.
The study appeared in the SAGE journal Human Relations.