Is Self-Doubt Crushing your Chances at Freelancing?

Confidence: some people have too little and others have too much.

Which group do you belong to?

Is there a middle ground?

How does confidence play a role in your career as a freelancer?

When I heard about the idea of freelance work, I do not have any experience or knowledge that I felt would be relevant. Sure, I worked at a call center, providing customer service, but that was in a corporate structure where every training was provided, together with full support from the company. Freelancing is a totally different ballgame and one where I didn’t know the rules.

Sounds familiar?

Richard Branson, an entrepreneur who founded the Virgin Group said:

“If somebody offers you an amazing opportunity but you are not sure you can do it, say yes – then learn how to do it later!”

Your attention to freelancing means that you’re looking for an opportunity. Maybe you’re tired of the competition in the corporate world, stressed out with your current job, exhausted with the daily commute, want to spend more time with your family or just looking for a change. Whatever your reason, this is the chance to make it happen.

So what can you do to improve the odds and eliminate those doubts that are crowding your mind?

Build a set of valuable and profitable skills.

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Each person has a set of talents. You may not be a genius at it, but few people are, so settle for being competent at first. Review all of the tasks you’ve ever done for the various companies that you’ve worked for and explore ways to update it. Be proactive in looking for related skills that connect to your existing one. If you were a teacher or trainer, you may also be a decent writer, proofreader or editor. If you draw as a hobby, with a little more work, you may find projects as a designer.

Develop a thirst for information.

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Learning is a never ending process. With so many experts who are eager to share their knowledge, everything you need is at your fingertips. Read eBooks or blogs, take advantage of free offers from online resources such as Udemy, watch how to videos, and ask questions in forums or groups. Sharpen those skills and add more value on what you can offer to a client.

Provide assistance to other freelancers.

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You are not the only one who suffers from uncertainty or distrust in your own capabilities. There are a lot of freelancers who are trying to forge a path towards success, but whose confidence are wavering. Network online or in person and grant help to those who need it. You will find that they will be eager to return the favor.

Ask for feedback on your work.

A client evaluation can be a valuable tool to improve your craft. Don’t wait for the project to end. Ask your client to comment on your work as you go along. Take each criticism or praise and use it to deliver high-quality work. This will result in having satisfied and long term clients.

Learn from your mistakes.

No one is exempted from making blunders, be it a small one or a major lapse. Learn to move on, but not before you’ve taken the lesson. You can use this as a way to improve your craft.

Give yourself time to grow.

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Rome was not built in a day. It takes time to be an expert in your chosen field. When you are equipped with the right tools, took the time to hone the techniques and you are prepared to do the job, self-doubt will take a back seat.

I went through being a fast food service crew, a fish vendor, a customer service representative and now, a freelance writer and editor who also dabbles in stock trading. The skill set needed for these jobs have nothing to do with each other. Am I a genius at any of these? Far from it. I do earn enough working from home and still have ample time to spend with my family.

If I can do it, you can too!



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