Four things you need to do to make a success of freelancing

New to freelancing? Or fancy making the leap? Read four things you need to do if you want to build a successful freelance career.

A freelancing career is an amazing choice for anyone who feels free spirited, creative and inspired. It’s also the perfect career choice for mums who want to use their skills and experience to continue working but on their terms.

No surprise then that in recent years, the freelancing industry has grown rapidly – helped no doubt by technology making it possible to easily communicate with, and work for, clients all over the world.

Four things you need to do to make a success of freelancing

But like everything, building a successful freelance career requires dedication and some knowhow. To help you make a success of freelancing, Ieva Laicane from Ready… set… start freelancing reveals four things you need to do.

1) Be clear about your goals

Whenever you are starting out, you have to set your goals straight. It will be a lot easier for you to succeed, to be confident in what you’re doing and grow more easily.

The first step to getting clear about your goals is to create a vision. Where do you see yourself and your business in a year and five years? What kind of victories are in your pocket? You can get very specific about this and answer questions like: how many people have you helped? How big is your yearly revenue? Don’t choose what feels necessary – choose what feels right for you!

Write down your vision, whether it’s one sentence or few pages. Then create several goals out of it: what kind of success will bring you there?

2) Set boundaries between your personal life and your work

It is easy to drown into freelancing, work for seven days a week, from early morning till… early morning. Freelancers tend to be superheroes: they can survive without eating for hours and sleeping for days. But it doesn’t have to be that way!

It is important to set boundaries early on. How to do that? First of all, create a working hour schedule. Be mindful of the fact that at first you might have to work more than an average person. It doesn’t matter, how many hours will be in your schedule, as long as it is working for you and your business.

So whether it’s 5-7 hour or 10-12 hour working day, write it down and schedule ahead. You can plan your lunch break for 2 or 3 hours instead of 1 or create more but smaller breaks through the day – you’re a freelancer, you can adjust your schedule to your needs!

The second step is letting others now. Write down in your e-mails the hours you will be available, inform your clients, work and life partners. No exceptions!

And the most important part of this: follow your schedule. Ease into it, don’t work over the necessary hours. Read on if you want to know how to do it successfully!

3) Plan ahead

Planning is a huge part of being a successful freelancer. There are many techniques how to plan your day, your week or even the whole year but start out simple.

Each Sunday sit down to write big tasks for the week. Write down everything you have to do and, later on, leave some space for things you’d like to do. Don’t push them into your schedule but get back to them if you really have some free time.

Each evening write down tasks for the next day. Be specific about the time when you’d like to do them: at the beginning of your day, in the middle or at the end? That’s how you will clarify your schedule and be ready to take on a new day without driving yourself crazy. Once again you can leave some space for additional things you could manage to do if you have more free time, but don’t create your schedule around them.

4) Do things step-by-step

Creativity and inspiration can be a problem at some point. When you’ve set your weekly schedule and you’re working on your daily tasks anything new that pops in your mind and you feel like it needs to get done NOW can create Domino effect tragedy.

You leave one task undone and suddenly you have no time for the rest either. At the end of the week, you have a pile of unfinished things to do while you’ve spent tons of time for your one new idea to happen.

Was it worth it? Most likely not. Therefore, the best tip to keep in mind when starting freelancing: do things step-by-step. If you have some new idea, spend some time to write it down: only some bullet points or the whole idea. Even better (and more time-saving way) to do it: record your idea. Plan time in the future to make it happen. Next week? Next month?

If you feel like you will never get to it, create a special list with all the amazing ideas you’re having along the way and plan out one week or one month to make them happen or to look through the list and decide: which ones are really worth it!

If it’s a small idea we’re talking about here, do the same: plan time in the future to make it happen. Even if it takes only 5 or 30 minutes. In that way, you will train yourself to work along your schedule.

Whenever you’ve set your goals, separated your business and your free time, planned your tasks and ready to take it all on day-by-day you’re all set to build consistent, successful and amazing freelancing career!

Need more freelance tips?

You’ll find more helpful advice in these articles:

If you feel like you need additional help to start your freelance career, visit Ready… set… start freelancing and get all the necessary information to kickstart your career!