Having been self-employed for over 12 years now, I have learned a lot of things over time. I’ve experienced highs and lows. I have succeeded, and I’ve failed. And, because I love sharing what I’ve learned, here are three things to help me achieve my freelance goals.
Three Things To Help Me Achieve My Freelance Goals
These are things in my life that I consider my must-haves to be in business for myself.
1. Having a Set Schedule
While the luxury of working for myself at home is a great thing, it’s super easy not to be structured and just do things when you feel like it. I have set a schedule of 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and make myself available to people during those times Monday through Friday.
I don’t feel burned out when I set a schedule for myself. We are creative people. We need to respect that about ourselves.
But, this is also how you get your clients and audience to be respectful of your time. If you make yourself available at any time of day or week, then they will come to expect htat from you. Don’t answer your emails after hours. Don’t respond to texts. Just don’t. Treat your business like a real business.
2. Buy A Good Computer
If you’re going to invest in anything, it’s a quality working computer. It’s a small investment when you think about how much work you do on it. Without a decent working machine, you’ll be slowing down a lot. That’s not productive. At all.
If you’re on it, say at least six hours a day (I’m factoring in breaks and the uber slow times). And, let’s say you do that five days a week. That’s 30 hours a week. That’s about 1560 hours a year that you would be working (yes, I know there are holidays and vacations to consider).
Now suppose that your rate was $1 per hour (just for math ease.) $1 per hour for $1560, you’d probably pay off a nice little Mac in a year. Obviously, if you need a machine that can handle powerful graphics software, maybe two years at that rate. And, how much will that Mac bring you in income? Hmmm. No brainer, right?
Example: Photogs – a $200 session – you’d only have to do about eight sessions (that’s session fees only) a year to pay off one year’s investment. And, let’s be honest. You can’t do your job without it. So just invest every several years. Once you get a new one, you’ll wonder why you waited so long and used that damn slow computer.
3. Find A Community Of Like-Minded Freelancers
This one is invaluable. I love my friends, but I truly love people that are in business for themselves; and in one that is similar to me. They get me when I need to vent. They get me when I ask for advice. And, I get them. I can’t imagine my quiet, lonely world without those people in it.
[Tweet “I love my friends, but I truly love the ones that are in business for themselves; and in one that is similar to me.”]
If you haven’t found them, look around for Facebook Groups that focus on similarities to you and your business. I’ve found several that I have joined that give me good feedback, and I’ve learned more from them about things than I could ever imagine.