I've been freelancing for 7 years, mostly working solo. I recently realized that my own understanding of what constitutes a "productive" day is based only on my own experience --- and, even though I have been able to work much more effectively, I still have a hard time feeling like I have done "a good day's work".
I think that part of this is that I only feel like I am productive when I'm in a "deep working" state - which often takes me a couple hours of busywork/surfing to warm up to. Then, it's hard to wind down at a regular time because I feel like I should take advantage of being in the zone. Then, I burn out.
I don't want this discussion to become about "how to be productive" - there are plenty of articles about that (and I think our culture prizes productivity in an unhealthy way anyway).
Instead, I'm wondering:
How much of your work day is "deep work"?
How do you maintain a healthy pace throughout your week?
How do you maintain a healthy separation between work & the rest of your life?
Any other thoughts / questions / experiences about this?