You’ve probably heard this saying. It’s a cliché that is as true for freelancing as it is for life. Many freelancers fail to really enjoy their freelancing journey because they’re too caught up in worries about the future of their freelancing business.
In this post, I’ll list eight reasons why the stress of freelancing might keep you from the joy of freelancing. I’ll also add a few suggestions on how you can overcome that stress.
8 Common Freelancing Worries
Here are eight worries that cause many freelancers to stress out. I’ve also included eight suggestions to help you deal with those worries.
- Will I meet my deadline? The key to meeting deadlines is good scheduling. Make sure that you set aside a specific time each day to work on the project. Avoid scheduling more work than you can do. Be sure to include a little time in your schedule for unforeseen circumstances. Work ahead if you get the chance. If you still feel that you will turn the project in late, let your client know as soon as possible.
- Will I get the project? Sometimes the answer to this worry is “no.” Obviously, not every freelancer can be awarded every project. However, if you have a good strong portfolio and you address the client’s needs specifically in your response to their request for proposal, there’s an excellent chance that you will get a fair share of work.
- Will I get paid? This is a very legitimate worry because nearly every freelancer has a horror story about a client not paying them. You’ve probably read some of these stories online. You can minimize your chances of nonpayment by researching a potential client’s reputation and by requiring new clients to pay a deposit before you start work.
- What about insurance? The insurance question is a tough one. The answer varies depending on your specific circumstances. Some freelancers have relatively no problems finding affordable insurance (or they may live in a country where insurance is available to all). Others really struggle to find a comprehensive policy that they can afford.
- Is my client really a scammer? This question is related to the previous one. It can be frightening to share personal information with a client you have never met. You may wonder if he or she is just out to get your information or to take advantage of you. Again, research is key. Learn as much about prospective clients as you can before you accept work from them.
- Will the client like my work? It’s true that some clients just can’t be pleased. No matter what you do, they won’t be satisfied. In these cases, the problem is not you, it’s them. Most of the time, however, you can increase the chances that the client will like your work by narrowing the scope of the project and asking as many questions as you can to insure that you understand what the client wants.
- Will I my friends/family accept my freelancing? At first, some may not. They will wonder how you manage to earn money when you don’t commute to an employer each day. Some may even think that you are really unemployed. But, freelancing as a lifestyle and a career choice is becoming more accepted every day. Be open and consistent in discussing your work and eventually most of your friends and family will probably accept it.
- How can I grow my business? There are many ways to grow your freelancing business. We’ve discussed some of them in this blog. You can outsource so that you can take on more work. You can develop some personal projects that are also money makers. Or, you can transition your business to something larger.
If these freelancing worries have been bogging you down, it’s time to rediscover for your joy in freelancing.
Find Your Freelancing Joy Again
First off, relax!
If you’ve been working too many hours or thinking about these worries too much, quit it right now. Give yourself a day, or two, off. Don’t even think about your freelancing business. It will be there when you get back.
Second, take advantage of some of the “perks” of freelancing. Work in your pajamas one day. Or, switch your day and night routine for a change. Or, pack up your PC and work from a remote location where there’s WIFI such as a cafe or your local library.
Finally, realize that all freelancers go through some ups and downs in their business. All freelancers have some things that worry them from time to time. The trick is not to let those worries take over. When I feel stressed, I remember what it was that drew me to freelancing in the first place.
Remember, freelancing is a journey, not a destination. :)
Share Your Thoughts
Do freelancing worries sometimes keep you from really enjoying freelancing? What is your biggest freelancing worry?
Share your answers in the comments.
Image by Ben Fredericson (xjrlokix)