Dealing with stress as an independent consultant

The following guest post is by Ryan Rivera. Jane has been an independent consultant for 2 and half years now, working for various business firms who seek her expertise on identifying and determining management flaws and problems. She analyses data and prepare reports, citing the difficulties and improvements the company should and must implement. Her job description also involves creating a detailed and quality long- and short-term management tactics to help increase efficacy of management control as well as increase productivity and profitability of the whole enterprise.

For years, she has been the ideal independent consultant companies can truly rely on. But for the past 6 months, subtle changes have showed how her work demeanor has changed. She no longer radiates positivism to her work family. Frustrations quickly creep up on her. Sick days have filled her time record, citing a number of nagging illnesses and excuses. Fortunately for Jane, her friends recognized that her job’s demanding and fast-paced responsibilities are causing to her burn out.

Stress at work is something that all workers face and handle differently. But there are those jobs, by definition, that tend to be slightly more stressful than others. Working in highly stressful conditions can impact productivity and performance. An example of those jobs is Jane’s job ─ working as an independent consultant. So, how can Jane and other independent consultants in her field should and must deal with everyday job stressors? Here’s how.

1. Take Time Off

Do not wait for exhaustion to hit you. Plan your vacation regularly. It doesn’t even have to be grand. It can be as simple as a two-day "I don’t care about anything else these days but myself". You need breaks in between work to refresh and avoid burn out.


2. De-clutter and Organize

An organized space invites productivity. You can find things easily. It is a great way of saving time wisely. De-cluttering frees up space and a tensed environment. Organizing work files and cabinets helps increase the sense of control over things. Working with a realistic to-do list and accomplishing these priorities greatly help as well.


3. Share Your Worries

One of the best ways to keep stress from invading the mind and body is through talking it out with someone. Letting all the worries of the day and days to come is an excellent way of blowing off steam. The support and empathy conveyed by your listener simply reduces stress.


4. Have Allies in Your Field / Industry

Tasks will seem easier to fulfill when you know that someone is willing to offer their advice. Having one or more friends in the same industry helps reduce your burn out levels tremendously. Just knowing that you’re not alone in the successes and struggles is an immense help.


5. Be Realistic.

Unrealistic expectations can lead to restlessness and job dissatisfaction.  Hence, stop obsessing over every detail. Just give your best and everything else will fall into place.


Consulting is a competitive industry. Your success depends not only in your expertise but also in your ability to handle the roadblocks ahead. Do not let stress and worries consume you. Give yourself time to breathe.


Ryan Rivera faced anxiety-related conditions that have prevented him from fulfilling his potential. But through appropriate stress management techniques, he has overcome them. To learn more ways to manage anxiety, visit