Freelancer. Self-employed. Contractor. Entrepreneur.
All these roles come with a whirlwind of emotions, high and low. Time of tumbleweed followed by avalanches of work. Tear inducing trauma and brilliant big wins.
It is certainly life-changing. And takes some getting used to.
And I bloody love it.
The difference a few days makes
Last week I did go into a bit of a funk. I just didn’t feel quite right. I was out of sorts, struggling to get my brain working and I just felt wobbly, but couldn’t quite identify why. I had felt weird for weeks, and yes, a global pandemic does have that effect, but it was more than that.
I found I was barely interacting, not posting on social media, focusing purely on clients, and mulling over my accounts. I felt a bit meh about my viewing figures and interaction rates, wondered whether it was all worth the time spent online.
I was staying away from social media generally and had a quieter work week and, as I cannot physically sit still, I turned my focus to self-development.
With some glorious weather forecast I took a day off (finally) and in the following days, I decided to tackle some long overdue tasks off my to-do list, so that I could focus on the new project I was to start the following week with less hanging over me.
I had some conversations with lovely new connections which started to pick me up and inspire me.
Then something happened.
BOOM! Something released in my brain. And ideas poured out. Things started to happen.
A timely kick up the butt.
So what were these fabulous musings?
A big business dev project I have been mulling for some time suddenly fell out of my head with amazing clarity and I furiously Post-it’d it.
I found some confidence to take this new project forward.
I was motivated.
I had energy.
It felt like the time is now.
I even tried some new things.
And its shown in the interactions I have had, the work I have put out, and my productivity.
Not only has that bit of action helped me to clear the decks, but it has also turned into a week of epic wins, big and small. It appears that all the self-development, persistence, and consistency are paying off. The stars aligned and suddenly everything is coming together.
A week of wins
This feels like I am bragging, but to hell with it. Why not shout it from the rooftops?
Here is my EPIC WEEK OF WINS:
- I have had a second contract extension offer for one of my clients 😎
- Another client has confirmed the go-ahead of a test phase for a project 👌
- I started a new project for The Frontline, which I am really enjoying 🥰 And I had some lovely feedback yesterday for the first piece of e-learning I have done for them.
- I was featured in an industry newsletter (and had no idea about this before reading it, a nice surprise) 😲
- I did my first Facebook Live – just a test for now and I did have a couple of technical glitches. But for someone who said they would never to videos this was huge 😍
- I came up with a plan for a secret project that will hopefully provide some passive income 🤓
- My fourth article for Communicator journal has been published this week 🧐
- Plus, I have found out my Communicator articles are on the list for the ISTC Communicator Journal Article of the Year Award 🤩 I did not know this!
- Finally, non-work based but we are celebrating 3 years since we moved into our beautiful house, and; 🏡
- WizzAir finally cancelled our flights and I have been able to claim the money back after 2 months battling with them (they have been doing some very dodgy practices throughout COVID) ✈️
I am floating on air. Or my brain is anyway.
How have I made this happen?
Instead of just basking in the glory of the wins and celebrating with mucho Prosecco (though that will be done), I wanted to sit and consider why this great week has happened so it will happen again. Here are some tips for finding some epic wins:
- Don’t let things hang around too long on the to-do list – take action to get them done, and free up some brain space.
- Take time off – Yes, this seems obvious and most people do, but I struggle to. Time off before a new project is definitely something I need to keep factoring in.
- Make new connections – Whether you have things in common or not. Don’t just rely on your ideal client. And get on Skype to physically talk to them, don’t just DM, and comment on social media.
- Try new things – it was well out of my comfort zone when I started writing for Communicator, I had no confidence in myself and certainly did not feel like an ‘expert’. But I pushed myself and it has done wonders for me.
- Fit in self-development – I have done so much self-development in a wide range of areas including reading, courses, webinars, and online membership groups. Some examples are; Using Pinterest for business, LinkedIn, copywriting, business development, HTML, using video, being an online educator, gamification, PR and self-promotion. This has all come together to give me much more confidence for my secret upcoming projects.
- Be proactive – I have also been very proactive in attending SO many webinars and virtual coffee meetings that my network has suddenly exploded.
- Try mentorship groups – I am in 3 mentorship groups which have been a wonderful place, not just to learn, but to test things out in a safe place, with a lovely bunch of ladies who support each other so much. It has been such a motivating and inspiring place to be.
- Find your focus – I have focused my online activities to places where fellow industry peers and ideal clients are, rather than the scattergun approach I had previously. There’s still some work to do here, but I am getting there.
- Show off your work – I have spent the time to redesign and relaunch my website – which is much clearer on what I do and shows my work in a way I am proud of and am happy to show now. It is so much more professional and has received great feedback.
- Use referrals – I have recommended other people for work and they have done the same for me. The freelance world is a lovely reciprocal place when you find your tribe.
- Be upfront – I have always been upfront about timescales and made sure I have met deadlines. I have been honest about problems and found a resolution. I have always given 110%, if not more. This is always appreciated and led to a lot of repeat work.
- #BeAPest – I think Wizz Air would say one definite action was not taking no for an answer and being an absolute pest.
More than anything consistency is key. Keep at it. Find your dogged determination.
So for anyone thinking, no-one is seeing your content and why bother or that your view numbers are low, keep at it. Keep putting yourself out there and the wins will come. Don’t give up even if you only get a handful of views on a post that you thought was one of your best. You never know who saw it, and may pass on your name. Or is watching quietly from the sidelines.
If you’d like to work with me or pick my brain about anything content, learning or graphic design related, drop me a comment below or message me via my contact page.
Write 52: Week 48
Write 52 is an accountability initiative started by Ed Callow, to encourage the team to create original content every week, and to commit to it. You can find more information here.
Come join us and get writing!