I’m always raving on about how anyone can start a side business by freelancing. I still whole heartedly stand by this because I truly believe that if you put forth your best effort you will start succeeding, especially because our generation maneuvers the online world so well. I created a course around freelancing, wrote a book about it, and even coach other ambitious millennials to establish their businesses.
However, just because you CAN do it doesn’t mean you are meant to. Freelancing is not easy. Sure, it gets easier over time, but freelancing is a huge learning process, and if you aren’t willing to face certain facts and make a commitment then you aren’t going to go very far. Period. Point Blank.
Below you’ll find 9 warning signs that maybe you aren’t cut out for freelancing. Don’t take it personally if you feel that this list describes you. Instead, use it as a learning experience so you start putting your efforts into something else you’ll enjoy and benefit from.
You Aren’t Cut Out for Freelancing If:
FEAR has got you by the balls (or ovaries).
Everyone, to a certain extent, is afraid of something. However, there’s a difference between being scared of something and FEAR having you by the balls. In the former, you’ll stare at the Fear square in the face, tell it to ‘eff off, and start kicking ass anyway. In the latter, you are crippled by your fear, so crippled that you don’t act.
For some people, this Fear exists in their romantic relationships (*ahem*), for others it’s in business. If you’re so scared of the outcome of your side hustle that you can’t even take little actions you aren’t cut out for freelancing. You’ll never succeed because you’ll barely ever get started.
You can’t commit.
Starting a freelancing side hustle is a COMMITMENT, people! You have to really stick to it and go through the motions if you want to see results.
You aren’t willing to do some things for free.
Ok, let me clarify here. I, of course, charge clients for the work that I do. But one of the main reasons I’ve been able to do that is because I give away a lot for free – like this here blog. I’ve committed to writing to some blogs that I really believe in for free. I SHARE some information with others who want to freelance – for free.
Does this mean I’m losing money? No. Quite frankly, there’s enough freelancing work to go around. And besides, it’s because I’ve done so much for free that good paying clients have been able to find me.
So, if you really want to be successful I’d start thinking about what you can share at no cost to others. It’s really as simple as just starting a blog geared toward helping others in your niche or field. (P.S. Click here to access my free tutorial on how to start a blog for $4.)
You don’t believe in your work.
I wouldn’t be writing this blog if I didn’t really believe in the message behind it. And believe it or not, potential clients can tell whether or not you’ve poured your heart and soul into something. Shitty work shows fast so make sure that you are being as sincere as possible in your endeavors.
You let stress run your life.
I’m not exactly the best person to talk about this because I’ve dealt with some hard core anxiety issues in the past. So, I sought out help to manage my stress. I knew I really wanted to be a writer, and let’s face it, sometimes things get stressful.
Deals fall through. Clients bail. You make mistakes and learn things the hard way. Like I said, this isn’t easy, but if you’re going to let stress totally overrun your endeavors then you aren’t cut out for freelancing.
You can’t say “No.”
Freelancers have a tendency of taking on way too much work – especially in the beginning. We think this will make us more money and get our name out there. A. This isn’t necessarily true. B. The only thing that really happens is that you get spent very quickly. As a result, you’re producing poor work and it’s not beneficial to you.
If you can’t say no, if you’re a people pleaser, you aren’t cut out for freelancing. Why? Because you’re going to find yourself very overwhelmed very fast.
You don’t know your worth.
I will not write 500 words for a buck. Granted, in the very beginning, I made the mistake of thinking the low pay was normal. As time went on and I did more research, I realized these were definitely not acceptable rates. Over time I’ve been able to raise my rates because I know my worth as a freelancer. And you know what? I will continue to increase my rates with my experience and exposure.
You aren’t patient (or at least willing to start cultivating patience).
I have never been a patient person. However, this entire process has forced me to start cultivating patience. If you aren’t even willing to start being patient you’re going to end up very anxious and stressed out.
You don’t have perseverance.
You will undoubtedly get curve balls thrown at you while you are freelancing. Your ability to overcome these curve balls is what will help you succeed in the end, or help show you that you aren’t cut out for freelancing.
I could have given up on the freelancing when I landed a full-time job. Or when my site crashed in December. I could have said “Well, maybe this isn’t right for me” when I only made 5 bucks my first month as a freelancer. But I didn’t.
Instead, I kept letting people know I was available for freelance work. I developed an entirely new branding strategy for the blog and even made it BETTER than before. Also, I kept refining what I would accept as work and have gotten amazing, well-paying clients because of it.
All of this and more because I was able to persevere. Like my mom always says, “Perseverance is omnipotent.”
So now what?
The bad news is that if you have a problem with any of the aforementioned then freelancing is going to be a very very rough ride for you. Now, if you are willing to do the work to overcome these obstacles then I have no doubt that you will be successful in your endeavors. How do I know? Because I had to do the work and overcome a lot of these issues myself.
I would love to hear your take on this. What are some things that have made you wonder whether or not you’ll be a successful freelancer?