The last three days have been exhilarating, exhausting and exasperating all in one. I became a freelancer on Monday. I’m three days in and not sure where this is all headed and, yet, I want to keep going.
I compare it to the mother’s lament about how 9 months of being pregnant and, often, the multiple hours of birth are all “worth it” once you have your little one in your arms. I’m not a mom and I won’t ever be – at least to a child. But for every word I write and every editing job I complete, a new little baby is put forth into the world and I smile.
So here is some advice I’ve gotten over the last few days that I want to share with anyone else out there who is venturing into the world of freelance.
1) “Working from home is feast or famine. It IS scary. But SO rewarding.”
I agree. My first few days started slowly. I kept at it, plugging away, trying to build my brand online even though there wasn’t much work. At the end of each day I’ve been thrillingly exhausted. I’ve put every ounce of who I am into what I’m doing and it’s totally worth it.
2) “Guard yourself against yourself. The reason you are successful is because you are hardest on you. Find as much scripture on how we are made in his image and how wonderful his creation (us) is. Post them by where you work, on the bathroom mirrors anywhere and go and remind yourself that if God has given you the passion for it he has already equipped you to succeed.”
Don’t be too hard on yourself. As we saw in #1 – it’s off and on. One day might be packed full and another might be quiet as a mouse. Take it all in stride as well as call on God for strength and purpose. For me, I wouldn’t be here without Him and I’m not moving forward without Him either.
3) “It doesn’t happen overnight. Turn negatives into positive, forward moving decisions.”
This one is hard. I want to be successful NOW, but it does take time. Be willing to put in the effort and keep moving forward.
4) “I prayed for you before the crack of dawn. Peace, no panic, today.”
It’s important to have people who support you in your freelancing. I’ve had nothing but support and it’s been terrific. But I can only imagine how hard it would be if I didn’t have the encouragement, and prayers, of others. You have to do it for you, but supportive friends and family certainly help in the process. Plus, they can pick you up on those slow days and go for lunch. 🙂
5) “It’s hard to find work/life balance. That’s my biggest obstacle.”
I so appreciated this advice and I received it from a LOT of folks. I took time for walks, lunch and to snuggle my dog. When my husband came home I made dinner and spent time with him. It’s easy to just keep working and working, but the whole POINT is to NOT do that and to have a better quality of life. Carve out and schedule time for doing nothing if you have to, but do it. It’s essential.
I’ve only begun on this journey so maybe I’ll have more sage advice soon. I’d love to hear your advice though as well. If you’re a freelancer show me some love in the comment section and give me examples of your best and worst days.