Being a freelancer in the creative industries requires a lot of commitment and self-confidence. No matter how advanced in your career you are, when there is work and income you feel fulfilled and grateful, but when there is none it makes you question your decisions. Bellow you will find a few tips on how to stay focused and avoid madness on your creative journey:
- Believe in yourself: I know that I repeat myself a lot, but this is probably one of the best advises that I have ever been given and I try to always pay it forward. You are good, your work is good. Keep on pushing and don't give up. Rome wasn't built in a day and neither will your brand. Success, like good wine, requires time.
- Keep improving your skills: low work periods are the perfect time to learn a new skill or to develop further the ones that you have. Take that course that you have been putting on hold because you never seem to find the time. Continuous education broadens our horizons.
- Embrace your accomplishments: you haven't gotten to where you are by chance. You have worked really hard to get here and that is in itself an accomplishment. So pause, take a deep breath and give yourself credit for what you have already done. And now, get ready to keep on going. Even if things are not working out the way that you planned, it would be a little unfair with your past self to quit now.
- Ask for help: if you feel stuck you should talk to someone and ask for help. You are not alone, the creative industries are full of people just like you who know what you are going through. We have all been there at some point so why not reach out to someone who can give you advice on how to move forward? Try The Freelancer Club or The Creative Industry Hub.
- Limit your expenses: they say that you always have to spend some to make some, but cutting down on unnecessary expenses will help you spend your money where it is actually helpful. Keep on spending on self-promotion, as this will give you income in the future, but take less taxis and walk more.
- Focus on yourself, not others: we all go through different paths in our journey, some get there faster than others, while some start with a destination in mind and end up somewhere completely different in the end. Focus on your own journey and stop wasting time and energy feeling bad for yourself when others seem to be doing better. Grass is always greener...
- Stay open to opportunities: the roman philosopher Seneca allegedly said “Luck Is What Happens When Preparation Meets Opportunity", meaning that we must always be prepared and open for when the opportunities arise. And they often present themselves when we least expect them so always be ready and receptive: carry business cards with you in your wallet, in your bag and in the pockets of all your coats and jackets; don't underestimate small jobs as sometimes they open the doors to bigger ones; approach even the shiest person at the following networking event, they might become your next client.
Photo credit: Behind the scenes photography by Stef Mic
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