How to Succeed as a Freelancer - Part 1
To my fellow freelancers, proprietors and those of you who are thinking about taking the leap and becoming self-employed, this blog article is for you.
Over the next few posts, I would like to share with you the most valuable lessons I have learned during my time as a freelancer and co-founder of Indimile. Lessons that I hope will help you learn from my experiences, mistakes I have made and motivate you to find your own success.
But before I share those nuggets with you, let me say this…
Being self-employed isn’t always a bed of roses.
The most common misconception about freelancing and starting a business, is that you’ll have more time, work much less and make a lot more money.
You can blame the well-spoken charlatan on YouTube for selling us all that dream, a dream where you will only work 3 hours a day, whist lying on a tropical beach, drinking out of a coconut, with an endlessly growing bank account. A dream that is only possible if you sign up for the 60-day success program.
As good as that would be, this is sadly not the case…
My experience as a freelancer and business owner has taught me that being self-employed requires a lot of hard work and determination. You will be met with many challenges on your journey and at times feel the weight of the world on your shoulders. But by choosing to persist during the difficult times will help you.
Which brings us to the first lesson…
Lesson Number 1: Persistence.
“Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.” – Winston Churchill
Like many of you I’m sure, I had also heard the saying many a time that it pays to persist, I mean this statement is pretty self-explanatory, continue in spite of difficulty, what’s so hard about that? Well, it wasn’t until I started my very first business that I truly understood why persistence is so important.
For the first couple of years that I was in business, I became well acquainted with the challenges and setbacks that this entailed. Just when everything was starting to come together nicely, something unexpected would happen and the business would fall on its knees. This would often result in more work and extra-long days, in an attempt to try and get the business back on track.
As a freelancer and business owner there will be times that you will fail, be it losing an important project or customer, experiencing a financial setback or feeling like everything is going in the wrong direction. I will be the first to admit that I have had my fair share of failures and when times were tough, I would often ask myself this question;
Is what I am doing worth it or should I just give up?
This is a question I’m sure many of you have asked yourselves during different times in your lives, and in spite of how ever difficult, challenging and stressful your situation may be, if you want to succeed at what you are doing, you just have to dig deep and keep going.
Persisting through tough times has not only helped me to me grow as a person, but has also taught me that the greatest rewards in business and life generally come from climbing the most treacherous of mountains. Reaching the peak of those mountains will present all kinds of opportunities for you and your business. Without realising this for myself, I would never have even dreamt of co-founding a software company and building Indimile.
Before I close, I thought I would share what has always helped to keep me motivated whilst climbing that mountain:
- Have a clear goal to work towards, a goal that will motivate and keep you on track through difficult times.
- Keep a positive mindset.
- Trust yourself and that what you’re doing is the right decision for you.
I hope this article helps motivate you on your own road to success and I look forward to sharing my next lessons with you, until then…