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10 Tips for Succeeding at Freelancing

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All over the world, more and more people are freelancing all the time. Working for yourself is awesome, but it has its challenges too.

When you’re a freelancer you’re the boss. You have to be able to motivate yourself. You need to have confidence. You’ve got to believe in yourself. Whether you sink or swim is entirely up to you.

You’re someone who wants to swim. And you definitely can. Here are 10 tips for succeeding at freelancing.

10 Tips for Succeeding at Freelancing

1. Be aware of time – I have an old friend who’s told me she always wanted kids but never got around to it and now it’s too late. That means decades of letting time slip by and missing out on one of the most important things in life.

If you’re interested in freelancing, get started. Don’t let years go by before you take steps to make it happen.

Red sand flowing through hourglass to keep track of time so you can succeed at freelancing

2. Don’t be afraid of failure – The people who are the most successful are the people who don’t care if they fail. They look at failure as a sometimes necessary step to success. Don’t be afraid!

3. Don’t give up – Many people start something new, then stop. This can be a bad thing or this can be a good thing. It’s not whether or not you stop, though. It’s the attitude with which you stop.

If you’re quitting and planning to never try anything new again, that’s bad. If you’re stopping to change gears or try something else again and again until you succeed, that is a good thing. So if you want to succeed as a freelancer, stop if you must but then always start again.

4. Don’t listen to negative people – Maybe you have a negative person (or people) in your life and when you tell them there’s something that you want to accomplish, they tell you that you can’t do it.

Do not listen to people who say you can’t do something. Get away from them, if possible. If not possible, then counteract what they tell you by talking to someone who has something positive to say.

5. Get started – For many people, getting started is the hardest part. But if you’re going to do anything, you’re going to have to start.

If you want to start working for yourself, or if you want to do anything new or difficult in your life, take a deep breath, dive in and just simply begin. If you’re someone who finds getting started to be the hardest part, once you take the first steps then the hard part is over.

Starting line for people to succeed at freelancing

6. Stick with it – While getting started is the hard part for some, sticktoitiveness is the hard part for others.

If you’re someone who struggles with sticking with it, break up what you need to do into pieces. Small ones, if you have to. Then when it comes time to accomplish each piece, just put your head down and force yourself to do it. When one of the pieces is finished, you will have accomplished something important, you’ll feel good, and you’ll have the experience to know that you can do it again.

7. Don’t be afraid of trying – While fear of failure is powerful, its precursor is even more crippling. Fear of trying can paralyze you into never doing much of anything new. But trying new things is one of the most fun parts of life. When you’re interested in new things, make yourself try at least some of them.

8. Don’t make excuses – If you really should do something you don’t want to do, it’s so easy to make excuses why you can’t do it. And even if you do really want to do something – for instance, freelancing – it’s also so easy to make excuses why it’s not possible. But all the excuses in the world don’t change the reality that many, many things actually are possible for you.

9. Focus on the long term – For some, life can be such a struggle that focusing on the short term is all they can do. But make sure to focus on the long term too. This will make the short term day-to-day life and changes you’re trying to go through, easier. If you want to be a freelancer who succeeds at what you do, don’t lose sight of the long term.

Hand holding camera lens seeing how to succeed at freelancing

10. Summon confidence – This is a hard one. So many people have confidence problems. When you lack confidence to begin with and then you try something and don’t succeed, it can seem like the end of the road. Pay attention to the things you succeed at, even if very small. Focusing on small successes can lead to more confidence and help you be able to achieve bigger successes.

Want to learn more about freelancing? Enroll in my free mini-course here.

Sabina Lohr is a lifelong freelancer turned entrepreneur who created World of Freelancers to help others discover how to work for themselves online and live the freelance lifestyle. She’s always really enjoyed the freedom that freelancing brings, including several years on and off of working online while traveling and living abroad.

This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. I enjoyed your article. I must admit that I liked your former name better. Scopist’s seem more specific and more important than the generalization use of the word freelancers.
    Can you tell me how I can learn to become a Scopist? I am a senior citizen with many years of administrative and legal secretary experience. I have not found schools that specifically teach how to become a Scopist.

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