Being a freelancer in today’s competitive market is a no-brainer because you get to experience the best of both worlds. While being able to draw a steady income based on your skill sets, you also get the luxury of your own time to make mission-critical decisions.
Besides developing a solid sense of ownership, a successful freelancer is also one who continuously upskills themselves. You begin to realize that there’s plenty of opportunities out there. The only way to capture opportunity is to develop a growth mindset.
The question is, “How do I make the most of this as an individual?”
The Freelancer ‘Hustle Culture’ Trap
We see it everywhere on social media. Earning that coveted six-figure income is seen as the goal for every freelancer out there. While it’s great to know that it is possible, is that the only way to define success as a freelancer?
That six-figure income will come and go, but what you acquire as a professional in your field of expertise will help you challenge even bigger situations in life.
Unlike a mundane corporate job, where you do what you’re told and nothing extra, the continuous hustle culture as a freelancer is more about self-acceptance and exploration. The greatest pride of a freelance career is to be able to do what you love and love what you do, every day.
The Pursuit of Learning
The continuous pursuit of learning and understanding the pain points of various clients eventually set you up for success. You learn to balance your priorities based on physical, mental, and spiritual health, after which wealth, recognition, and headspace will follow.
In fact, the pivot for a freelancer is when he or she understands that growth is at the center of the hustle culture and not the lifestyle you have or the wealth that you accumulate.
Owning Your Time
The true power of freelancing is that your time is in your hands. While freelancers on LinkedIn post pictures of their new Macbook almost every other day, it’s important to differentiate between the monetary value of a successful freelancer and the work-life balance you have managed to strike.
Always Be Learning
It’s easy to get swayed by the countless ‘secret formulas for success’ or how-to guides on making a ‘six-figure income’ overnight. Instead, let the successes of others remind you that every day is a new opportunity to expand your portfolio, and get better at your craft.
The more the effort, the better the rewards.
That’s why a freelancer is always a work in progress. You’re always learning. You should be proud that you’ve foregone the conventional path for something that’s exceptionally yours.
Self-care is Important Too
Your mental health might be at the mercy of the people you work with. In some cases, clients will acknowledge and appreciate every little thing you do for them. On the other hand, the inability to empathize, common among some clients, may affect your mood, and thereby the work that you do.
Sometimes, it will be overwhelming to realize the massive opportunity you’ve stepped into with freelance work.
Sometimes, you may feel unsure about whether or not you’re good enough.
Sometimes, you’d have so much work that you get lost in it.
But, through it all, remember that nobody has it all figured out.
Successful freelancers have learned one central life skill – self-acceptance.
From Self-care Comes Self-acceptance
Self-acceptance also helps you understand your strengths and weaknesses, so that you can make better decisions in life. The same time can be used to dwell in darkness or light. The choice is yours, accept it.
Throw anxiety out of the window. Life is always a work in progress for everyone. Whether you land a six-figure income on one deal, or it takes a good few years to get what you want, trust the process.
Your road to becoming a successful freelancer starts with every moment you spend loving what you do.