Let's be real for a second. Being a freelancer isn't as golden as we all see on Instagram regardless of how many "overnight life/business" coaches you see popping up making a "supposed" 7-figures after a month. It's not always free flights in first class, and overnights in the top suite of the most luxurious hotels. Sometimes, it's being up until 2am trying to get that website working properly, finding that email you need to build a new connection, or figuring out what the next hustle in addition to what you're already doing so you don't starve or end up evicted from your sacred space. So how do I keep it together? Here's how!
1. Stop Comparing
Comparison is where all dreams go to die and all potential & talents lay buried never to be seen again. I do myself the favor by not comparing my first 10 mins of entrepreneurship to another's 10 year journey. A lot of times we forget that social media is where everyone show the highlights of their lives and hide the lows. I've never been afraid to share my story (including the low of eating ramen for a week once just to make sure I had rent) because there are others out there who don't see/hear this and think it's all glitz and glamour. I want them to know it's okay. Everyone goes through rough patches even if they don't want to talk about. Someone got hungry at some point even when you saw them post an Instagram image of the best smoothie bowl you've ever seen in your life. My point is, don't compare your shoes to another. You never know where they started, how they're really doing, or what their personal goals are. Wear your shoes at your pace. You'll get to your destination at the right time.
2. Throw Your Own Celebrations
Celebrate your damn self! Pat yourself on the back when you've accomplished a goal regardless of how big or small it may be. Continuously looking for validation from peers, family, or friends will only lead to disappointment. I'm not saying it doesn't feel great when your Ace Boon Coon looks at you with that approving smile and the "I'm so proud of you" dab. It feels fucking great! You feel like Ali after he flew like a bird and stung like a bee. But you should never depend on that to function as a freelancer because not everyone will understand your wins/struggles. So when you have days when you don't even want to get out of bed and you do, give yourself the kudos you deserve. When you've gotten over that fear of rejection, sent that email, and got a "YES", jump for joy and go eat that ice cream you've been putting off for months. You deserve it.
3. Self-Care Is Your BFF
Self-care the shit out of yourself whenever you can. As a freelancer, you don't have that health insurance 9-5's have. You're not given vacation time to figure things out. You're in-charge of everything and that includes your sanity. You're not super woman, so don't act like it. Self-care in your world may be delegating tasks so you can have more time with your family. If it's turning off your computer for the weekend and snuggling up on the couch with junk from 2 weeks ago just to binge on "House of Cards", fucking do it. For me, I spend the day giving myself manis/pedis, facials, doing my own hair, and all while watching whatever Netflix/Hulu junk show I find interesting. It opens my mind to creative possibilities once I shut the screen off.
So let's recap. There are three ways you can keep it together while doing this freelancing thingamajig.
1. Stop comparing yourself
2. Celebrate your wins
3. Self-care the heck out of yourself
PS: Shout out to JustFab for always keep my feet looking fresh. No. This isn't sponsored, but I look too good in these shoes not to give props where it's due.
What do you do to keep it together during this freelancer journey? Drop your thoughts below!