So, I think I have to start off by saying that being a freelancer is not better than having a full-time job. One choice is not better than the other, and if you are somebody who glorifies and infatuates anybody who is a freelancer, you don’t need to do that. There is no difference. One is great for some people, the other is great for other people, and that’s fine. Being a freelancer is not the end all dream for everybody. It just doesn’t work for everybody. It’s not for everybody. It shouldn’t be for everybody. Okay? So, I’m here to help you figure out if the freelancer path is right for you, which path is the best, because there’s not one that’s better for everybody. Right? Okay.
So, a huge component of this is the fear aspect, as I mentioned. When you’re a freelancer, you have to be able to withstand a certain amount of fear of the unknown, basically, of where the money [is] going to come from. Having to rely on people just constantly believing in you and trusting that you can do it and coming to you and asking you for something is terrifying. I will tell you that it is the worst part of freelancing to me, the fear aspect. And there have been times in my psyche where I let the fear take over, and it actually prevents me from taking action and from fighting for myself to succeed. And a lot of the people that I know that try to freelance and don’t make it that far usually let the fear overcome them, and it generally holds them back from taking action and from fighting for themselves, because it’s scary, I know. So, what I would say is, what you have to do is let the fear sort of push you, to propel you into action, to be the thing that motivates you to continue to fight for yourself. And having that mindset shift for me with the fear has been extremely beneficial. And sometimes, especially this year, this year is so hard, I definitely fall into the pattern where I let the fear take over for me, and some days, some weeks even, it just completely swallows me whole and I can’t move, I feel unable to succeed and to do much, and that sucks. So, sometimes I have to give myself a little pep talk that reminds me to let the fear push me forward. And as a freelancer, you also have to be so self-motivated, you have to be able to push yourself, you have to fight for yourself so much, you have to advocate for yourself every day, you have to remind the world that you exist, and provide services and be a salesperson for yourself every day, and that is exhausting. And a lot of people that I know that try freelancing can’t do it, that gets them. The constant sales pitches, the constant fighting for yourself, reminding the world that you exist, pushing yourself onto people constantly, it is exhausting, especially with social media, right?
Social media is such a great tool for marketing yourself, and to remind the world that you provide services and are, you know, available. It’s a great tool for a freelancer like myself, but it is so exhausting. It is so hard some days to remind the world that I exist. Some days, I just don’t want the world to notice me. I just want to fly under the radar. And it’s like a little casual dream of mine to just go away and not have anybody notice me and not have to remind the world that I exist for just little bit. But all I get is a vacation, I can’t do that for long because I have to rely on social media in order for myself to continue to get work. That’s just the way that my specific career works.
Now, do you have to have a lot of followers on social media to be a successful freelancer? No. There are many freelancers, my partner actually, he’s a freelance product designer, he doesn’t use social media, he flies under the radar, he just uses word of mouth, he gets his last client to recommend him to somebody else, and it works. So no, you don’t have to use social media, but for the type of career that I have, it works really, very, very well, and it’s the number one way I get new work now. Word of mouth is great for sure, but social media is also great. So, you don’t have to have a huge following or any social media presence at all to be a freelancer, but you do have to be able to advocate for yourself.
And again, those self-initiated deadlines, the self-motivation, the willingness to be able to act every day, to move forward every day, to get things accomplished daily throughout the day is so important. There are a lot of people out there, you know, I wouldn’t necessarily say the procrastinators of the world, but the people that really rely on accountability of somebody else saying, “I need this by noon, give it to me by noon.” And as a freelancer, you really you get to pick the day and the time, and you’ve got to stick to it whenever you say it to somebody else. And there’s nobody else who’s like, “I need it by noon,” you’re just kind of picking the day and the time, and you just have to allow yourself to be the person that’s setting that stuff for you. And that is hard, it is hard. But as a freelancer, you have to be able to uphold that schedule for yourself, which is a challenge as well.
Salam Curhat Berkhasiat 🙂