When I first started out in my freelance writing business and working as a virtual assistant, I used one cellphone to communicate with my clients. I figured that most of them would not try to keep in touch with me all of the time and I took this for granted because, after a while, one of my first couple of clients started to text me on my personal cellphone simply because it was how I had contacted him in order to initiate a project. This became overbearing as I was receiving text messages throughout the day and night and the client expected me to respond. When I clarified that this is my personal cell phone and it was frequently turned off while I was working, I asked them to contact me via email instead.

There are a number of different reasons why, for the past four years, I have had a business cellphone and a personal cellphone. Yes, this means that I have to carry around two iPhones and have both of them paid for, insured and in a protective case. However, this has been a big support of me in my business because it ensures that anyone contacting me on my personal cellphone is a person I would actually like to hear from whereas my other cellphone refers to business only.

All of my personal things like my Facebook are installed only on the personal phone, whereas my business accounts like Twitter, Instagram, Gmail, and Upwork are only accessible on my business phone. This makes it much easier to identify situations in which I want to turn off the business cellphone and check out mentally for the day. This makes the distinction between my business life and my at-home life much easier to make and it is also much easier to turn my business phone on airplane mode when I’m finished working for the day so there’s no temptation for me to drop back into the office, answer a couple of emails and handle any other situations.

While this can be more expensive, remember that this is a deductible expense since I use my business phone and phone line only for business related purposes. This also makes the distinction very clear when it comes to the IRS. I strongly recommend that as you grow your freelance business and people want to get in touch with you, that you make this distinction as well. While you can use a Google Voice number and have it forward to your cellphone, I think it is extremely beneficial to have one phone that is dedicated only for business purposes. It makes it easy come tax time and also separates the line between your personal life and your business.

When you have a lot of things on your plate and are working with a great deal of responsibilities, you’ll feel less tempted to check your phone all of the time for business purposes, such as if you’re relaxing with your family or your spouse. It’s very tempting to allow your business life to bleed into your personal life but having two separate cellphones helps to make this distinction very clear and helps to support you when you choose not to work. 

Hi, I’m Laura!

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