Do you remember the first few months of your freelancing career when you are full of excitement and enthusiasm to take on new projects?
Are you still in the same situation or has your eagerness waned and you’re scrambling for a reason to keep going?
Being a freelancer allows you to set your own time, choose clients, accept or reject deals and only take the tasks that you want to do. However, it also means you are in charge of your own motivation. You need to be able to coast through the bumps on the road, without waiting for someone else to push or carry you. The picture of why you are doing this should be so entrenched on your mind that no obstacle can dislodge it.
This is easy during the first year when you’re still learning the ropes and everything seems new. You’re exploring a different world and the possibilities for growth are endless. The freedom that freelancing gives can be exhilarating and you marvel at how you survived all those years of being confined in an office job. You are constantly amazed at how easy life has become, now that you are no longer accountable to a boss.
The other side of this scenario is that it is easy to fall into bad habits when no one is hounding you to work. Without a rigid schedule to follow, you may soon find reasons to slack off. Temptations abound since you are online all day and can easily switch to checking social media sites without worrying about getting apprehended. If you work during the day, there will be added distractions from family members and friends. Before you know it, weeks or months have passed and your project is nowhere near completion.
Of course, everyone has off days and the drive to work is not always burning, but if you don’t learn how to stoke the fire or develop self-discipline, your career path may soon end up being uneven and leading nowhere.
If you’ve ever gone through a day when nothing seems to go right or you’re dragging your feet just to accomplish the most basic tasks, then you’ve probably hit that spot where motivation is becoming scarce.
So how do you recapture those wonderful days when no task seem insurmountable? Ask yourself, what propels you to get up in the morning and start working? Is it the money to be earned, recognition to be gained, or pride in your accomplishments? Is your desire for success enough to sustain you through the days and months when you don’t feel like doing anything? Will the prospect of unpaid bills drive you to finish the project that you’ve been putting off? Take a closer look at your source of motivation and check if it is still enough to push you into achieving your goals. Freelancing makes it easy for you to fall into the habit of doing it later, but if you know why you’re doing it and for whom, the road becomes easier to traverse.
A freelancer’s life is not always full of spice. There will be days when you’re struggling to keep it all together but then, whoever said this was easy and it will be handed to you on a silver platter? Like anything worth having, establishing a freelancing career is full of challenges and there is no safety net to cushion your fall. There will be success and failures, but it is up to you which one will prevail. You have a choice to work continuously on a project until it is finished or put it off to whenever you’re in the mood to resume.
There is a responsibility that comes with your choice of career. The freedom that you enjoy as a freelancer has to be earned, not just with one time projects, but with consistent and efficient results that your clients can trust. Remember that the amount you earn depends on the quality of your work, how productive you are and if the clients like it enough to give you repeat business.
If you still can’t find the motivation, make an assessment and ask some important questions. Are you still having fun while working? Are you happy with the choices you’ve made or would you rather be doing something else? Are you traveling the road that you’ve envisioned and will your goals be attainable at this rate?
We all have different reasons for wanting to be a freelancer, but what’s important is that you focus on it and reward yourself for your accomplishments.
A freelancer’s freedom may come with a price, but it is one that we are willing to pay.