Tuning In to True Wealth: Optimizing Your Freelance Business
I recently started reading The Wealthy Freelancer and the book is chock full of fabulous information and ideas. It’s got me mulling over the way I do business, and how I can improve my freelance operation.
The book is not just about building a financially viable business; it’s about achieving true wealth, which includes living the lifestyle you want.
Realizing What You Want out of Freelancing
For the past few years since I started freelancing full-time, I was so focused on making money and staying afloat, so I never took the time to spell out what I wanted—I just kept going. Working. Making money. Enjoying what I do, but always wanting to do more of the things I wanted instead of working for clients I didn’t necessarily enjoy. Most people do this when they start—but if you’ve been freelancing for a while, it may be good to rethink what you want out of your business.
The authors of the book suggest answering four basic questions and writing down the answers in order to visualize what you want, and ultimately, attain it. When I read these questions and really thought about them, the “aha” button went off upstairs—most of what I’m doing isn’t aligned with what I want. So I need to make some changes. It started, ironically, with writing down answers to these questions.
Moving Past “Just Staying Afloat”
This hit me hard because I have put in years of planning into my business, but like I said, was so busy on staying afloat to really hone in on what I want to do. I could write well and projects have continuously kept coming in, but I don’t spend the majority of my time doing the types of projects that I love. It’s okay when you’re trying to pay bills and you’re making it, but for me, after a while, I wanted more. (But I don’t regret the past few years either, because I’ve completed a variety of projects and touched upon different types of copywriting for a multitude of industries.) So now that I have a strong background, it’s time to tune in to what I really want…and you can too!
Many freelancers didn’t intend on starting their businesses, so don’t feel bad if you don’t have everything mapped out. Now that you have some experience, it’s a good time to really think about and clarify what you want. You can mull things over in your head, but if you write it down, it will help you to make the changes you want happen. Pin up your answers or put them in a place you’ll see them often to stay reminded about what matters most.
The Wealthy Freelancer Worksheet
One of the tools that was super-helpful to me was the book’s worksheet, which asks four simple questions to help you define what you really want out of your life as a freelancer.
- The types of projects I want…
- The types of clients I want…
- The income I want to earn for my project work…
- The lifestyle I want for my freelance business…
Looks pretty simple, right? Wrong! Sit down and take some time to respond to these questions. Think about your business. Some of us, like me, don’t really do this too effectively. I have always kept what I wanted in mind but never really articulated it. Now that I have, I feel like I am working closer to get exactly what I want out of freelancing.
You may find that you are in check with the things that you want…great! But if not, hopefully checking in and answering these will help recalibrate your freelance business and bring you greater wealth. Whether it’s money, more time for family, or more opportunities to do the things you like, building true wealth begins with these four questions.
Sure, I will still complete projects I don’t necessarily enjoy. But doing this exercise has helped me redeploy my energy on projects I love and spend less time on the projects that I don’t like as much. To me, that’s huge progress.