Attention all freelancers/business owners:
‘Just because people are not engaging, doesn’t mean they are not watching’
Boom!! The most almighty, humdinger of a phrase nonchalantly muttered from my man pal.
Wow! I mean WOW. It was exactly what I needed to hear.
Working for yourself is amazing. Bringing your ideas to fruition, making sexy, snappy decisions that may you feel zingy and all superhero and deciding how much you earn (and how) is a pretty ace position to be in.
BUT it is full on...I refuse to say hard work as somehow when I say hard work, it seems harder.
But whichever way you look at it, you have to do the hustle, baby and sometimes you don’t feel like it.
Sometimes you question whether you should just get paid as an employer; have a predictable life, a consistent income, regular holidays and daily, casual small talk with James from accounts.
Yes, I design how I work and manage to make it a reality with my happy, jigging, fiddling toddler in tow but am I sitting in a Parisian style cafe staring dreamily over my Mac book Air onto a cobbled street just feeling #blessed and inspired...no.
But what I can do is work smart. I can rattle through a to do list as fast as Michael Flatley’s toe tapping feet and I am in constant touch with my instinct. Does this feel good? Do I want to do it? Is this going to be more hassle than it is worth. That ‘niggling feeling’ used to be nudged out of the way by ‘pleaser’ syndrome.... ‘Well maybe I should do it?’
These days my instinct/gut feeling/ intuition is right at the front leading in leg warmers, neon and star jumping.
So if you are in a January lull and questioning everything…
R E M E M B E R
- There is a reason you are doing this. You love it. You are good at it. When it works, it makes you feel amazing. You are always brought back to it. If everything feels muddled, go back to your why.
- People only need you if they need you. But in the meantime, give value. When I was 38 weeks pregnant, my back had had enough. I couldn’t climb my stairs. I walked like a sedated Kristen Wiig in Bridesmaids. Even sitting down hurt. I had never thought about back ache much before as my back had always supported me (literally!) But when I needed help, I went back to solutions that I had subconsciously been absorbing over the years.
- So... keep telling people what you do. Simplify it. Make it easy. Don’t get lost in ‘being all things to all people’ as the only person who will suffer is you. Be sure people can buy from you/work with you and don't over complicate the process.
- Reach out (with a wiggle in a Motown way if you like!) Share ideas. Collaborate. Go back to basics... two heads are often better than one. If you are waiting for follows, likes and comments, don’t. ‘Get stuck in’ as my Dad would eloquently say?! Join the conversation. Add value. Make life easier for someone. Share a recommendation and don’t be a twerp.
- Get help. Please, please, please don’t suffer in silence. It is a grim place to be. I have been there; stomping miserably around the house dancing the passive aggressive grind whilst channeling my hormonal 13 year old self. It isn’t pretty. Although I did have glorious, dewy skin as a 13 year old!
- Don’t worry about being perfect. There isn’t any point. Perfection will only stand in your way and stop you from moving forward. Often ‘waiting for the perfect time’ is dressed in the outfit of fear or procrastination