conquering balance as a freelancer with the three Fs 👀 💰 🤩

by Luke Farrugia • 5 April 2021

How do we balance work, family, friends and hobbies and maintain a full life? We've talked to other freelancers through the Side Hustle podcast, and this has been a recurring theme. A mystery to solve that everyone seems to tackle in their own unique way. We have found some commonalities through the years, and the answer revolves around being grateful for what we have, prioritising our time and being ok with putting in the hours to make the dream a reality.

As a freelancer (and a freelance side hustler), it can be tough to determine which projects to chase, accept or decline. The majority of the time, a sense of flattering haste sets in (flattered to be called upon for work), and we can find ourselves chasing any opportunities that come our way—proving to ourselves that we can do anything, no matter our limits. But the problem is, we are not robots and saying yes to everything can be a stressful and anxiety-inducing affair. In turn, we are causing our workloads to stretch our capacity while creating a real case for burnout. 

When combating this urge to work on 'all the things', the three F method can be a fantastic way to keep yourself in line when deciding on the projects that align with your goals. They help shift our mindset from chasing clients to thinking strategically about which projects will enhance our balance and push us forward, which will bring us either Fame 👀, Fortune 💰 or Fun 🤩? 

When choosing a freelance project, we want to cover at least two of the three Fs (Fame, Fortune or Fun). If you can hit all three, that is a bonus and unlocks the fourth F, fulfilment.

Fame 👀
  • Will this project be folio worthy? 
  • Will this work generate a case study that is worth talking about? 
  • Could this case study open doors for future work? 
Fortune 💰
  • Will this project gross a high return? 
  • Could this project lead to an ongoing professional relationship?
  • Is this client comfortable paying my highest hourly rate? 
Fun 🤩
  • Will the experience be pleasurable, or will it bring anxiety and pain? 
  • Is there an opportunity to grow when collaborating on this project?
  • Do I ethically align with the subject matter of this project?

Often we forgot to think about ourselves, but these three points are essential. It can be easy to fall into the 'win the client by any means' trap, but our mental well-being and balance are crucial. When taking a step back, this method can ease our workload and help us focus on aiming for the clients that can help get us to the next level. When we are enjoying the process, we grow and advance our craft whilst delivering valuable work. Everybody wins. 

If you have any questions, comments or would like to discuss this topic further, please feel free to come along to the Duel of Doves Slack space for a chat. 


join us

duel of doves is a curated community, created to encourage thought-provoking discussions through connecting and collaborating with like-minded people. A professional online home away from home, sans the office politics, where we can be ourselves and get sh*t done.


Get the duel of dove’s wrap-up sent directly to your inbox.

Follow us on instagram