Have you ever considered freelancing?
If you have, why are you not doing it? Is it because of the fears you have?
Well, it’s very normal to be afraid. We are all afraid of something, and it’s generally not a fun experience, but it serves a purpose.
It keeps you safe.
But at the same time, fear might be unhelpful. It can prevent you from taking action to achieve your goals and dreams. It will blind you from opportunities.
It will hold you ransom for many years, cutting you from achieving true freedom and happiness.
Many people hate their day jobs. They wish they could quit and follow their passions, but circumstances won’t allow them.
Bills won’t pay themselves, and children have to go to school. Also, mortgagees are on their necks. Quitting to try something they are not sure about is not an option.
While I wouldn’t advise that either, I believe anybody can start freelancing as a part-time gig and transition into a full-time freelancer.
You can continue enjoying the steady income while sacrificing time to build an online job career which might earn you more money than your job does.
Yet still, other fears of freelancing hold back potential freelancers, preventing them from pursuing their dream.
1. Fear that you’re not good enough
It’s very typical to have self-doubt when trying something new. That’s because you have no prior experience of the adventure and are mostly and clear on the way forward.
Starting freelancing can seem daunting, yet you don’t need any prior experience to produce work good enough to be paid in most cases.
But still, your mind tells you that you’re not done this and will probably not produce the best work in the market. So you castigate yourself and feed the fear monster in you, which grows to the point that it affects your self-esteem in other things.
Nonetheless, if you quash this fear and start your freelancing journey, for instance, by joining freelancing platforms and bidding for jobs, another stumbling block waiting for you
2. Fear of criticism.
People who generally have low self-esteem are more prone to quit at this stage. You get an online job and do it to the best of your ability, only to be met with stern criticism from your client or job board.
This ordeal then repeats for the next two or three jobs, and you cannot take any more of this BS.
It demoralizes you; you quit and go back to your old boring job. Your dream of achieving freedom and financial stability through freelancing goes to the drain.
But what if you are strong enough to take a few more blows from the next 5 or 10 Jobs before you start getting positive feedback?
Well, that means you have persevered and sacrificed ego and energy to learn how to impress your clients for now. But it doesn’t mean that they will be there forever.
And then comes your next wall.
3. Fear of losing clients and lacking jobs.
This fear is inevitable for every freelancer. There’s usually a periodic trepidation event based on the seasonality of the job market supply, particularly in online writing.
You are always worried about whether you’ll get the next job to pay for the upcoming bills. You wonder whether your previous client was impressed enough to offer you other jobs.
Or whether the job boards will have enough supply of tasks to secure some.
Then the biggest fear of all sets in;
4. Fear you’ll not make enough money.
One of the top agendas of freelancing is to make enough money to guarantee our freedom and happiness.
So anybody considering joining the freelancing industry wonders whether they’ll make enough money, perhaps more than they can from full-time jobs, while enjoying the perks of digital nomadism.
If you can’t take criticism positively, that means you won’t be dedicated to learn and improve your skills, limiting your clients’ supply, and reducing the number of jobs you can get, which affects how much you can make as a freelancer.
How to deal with fears of freelancing
If you’re facing any of these fears and believe there is preventing you from starting your freelancing journey, here is how to deal with these very normal emotions.
I have one word for you; attitude.
It all starts from the mind.
Now you’ve probably heard of many motivational speeches about affirmations. Affirmation is primarily the practice of positive thinking and self-empowerment, believing that you can achieve anything you set your mind to.
Practitioners believe that once you program your mind with positive affirmations, the universe finds a way to make your ambition achievable.
This is no BS.
I’ve tried it, and although being inconsistent, it has served me right.
I believe as a blogger that I will always find opportunities to exploit and earn income from it. I pray about it and hold it dear in my mind.
Somehow every time, an opportunity pops up from nowhere and secures my financial future for the next few weeks or months. Plus, I save for tough days.
I’ve never reached a point where I have no income source and no plan for the near future.
I don’t think you can be successful in freelancing without a positive mind. First, freelancing is a new adventure whose perks attract many people from traditional employment systems.
Many young people are flocking into the freelancing industry, presenting a lot of competition.
With a negative mind, this competition will most likely stop you in your tracks when facing the first wall; fear of not being good enough.
Remember, while you do freelancing as a part-time job to supplement your other income streams, somebody somewhere does it a full-time job.
They work tirelessly every day to ensure they offer the best freelance services. They pitch their ideas to clients, hook them in and work hard to maintain them.
So if you look down upon yourself, you cannot grow. You won’t be dedicated to your job, and clients will not stick around because there is no incentive to do so.
So before you even consider taking a shot at freelancing, make sure you have the right attitude to set you on a path of success.
And this is the basis of countering all the fears you have as a freelancer.
Quash fear of criticism
For instance, the fear of being criticized can be easily quashed by a positive attitude towards criticism.
Instead of seeing criticism as an insult, learn from it and improve your skills.
Clients can be very unforgiving. They will throw stones at your work and call you a failure. Those using online jobs platforms can pressure the companies not to pay you and instead allocate jobs to other freelancers.
You’ll have lost energy and time on the work you did, and it might demoralize you.
To move forward, take it positively and learn from the mistakes you made.
Meanwhile, focus on one niche and aim to become the best at it. If you do online writing and you noted most of the criticism in a specific niche, focus on improving your writing skills for a long until you feel confident in your work.
This allows you to move faster towards your goal than being a jack-of-all-trades.
You’ll begin taking all forms of criticism in work and outside work, positively and making lemonade out of it. You’ll learn to deal with different temperaments and grow your emotional intelligence, a crucial element in the business world.
Land more Jobs and clients
Having conquered your fear of criticism and, in the process, improved your skills, you’ll secure more jobs and clients who might become loyal to you because they love your work.
Freelancing platforms have a feature that enables freelancers to showcase their mastery, the number of jobs they have done, and the approval rate for their projects.
It provides a basis for clients looking for quality freelancers by enabling them to identify the perfect freelancer to work on the job.
If you do many niche-specific jobs and accumulate good reviews from clients, your profile will be ranked among the best freelances giving you access to more job offers.
Clients will see you as an expert and be more willing to invest in your services; consequently, crushing your final fear of not making enough money.
As you work on more projects, you learn to estimate the value of every minute or hour you spend on a job. Therefore you can estimate how much you need to be paid to sustain your financial needs and perhaps make more to save.
And once the money starts flowing in, you might have to take control of your spending habits to ensure you save some money for the low seasons, especially for gigs such as online writing, which depends on university semesters.
If you have a compulsive spending habit, you should seek advice from a BetterHelp therapist.
I probably did an injustice by making it seem that all you need is the right mindset to succeed in freelancing.
That only gets you quarter way up the stairs.
The rest is a cocktail of right platforms, working smart and hard, consistency, and a nice spread of patience because, just like any great success, it takes time to get to the top.
It’s a marathon, not a 100 m sprint where the longest and fastest legs win. You need a good strategy, a focused mind, and stamina.