I’ve made it through my first week as a freelancer. Whew!
It’s been a pretty eventful week in my new career, or at least it felt that way to me.
Monday morning, the editor of the website I write for, TheNextFamily.com (or TNF), e-mailed me and told me that the former Bruce Jenner had introduced the world to Caitlyn Jenner, so I quickly wrote an article for the site. It took me about an hour and a half, a record for me.
Around 1 pm, I had a scheduled phone conversation with that same editor. Although we planned for an hour, it lasted about two! Which wasn’t a bother for me, I had so many questions. Basically, we discussed my daily duties with social media, the brainstorming sessions we would have with PR, the basics of brand strategizing and contacting organizations or businesses for advertising opportunities, and article ideas.
While we discussed everything, I realized how excited I was for this new adventure, more so than I had been months ago when I decided to make this change in my life. It was fun to strategize and plan, fun to learn new things about social media that I hadn’t known before! She was excited, I was excited, so it ended up being a great conversation.
I also wrote a blog on Monday night and posted it that evening.
Tuesday was a very stressful day for me! It was my first time posting on social media for TNF and I was so freaked out! Was I doing it correctly? Had I found the right kind of links to post? I spent far too much time on just social media posting because I kept second-guessing myself.
That day I also promoted the blog I had posted the night before on my social media, 8 Things I Love About Living In A Small City In Texas. Additionally, I continued working on an article for TNF, 8 Awesome YouTube Channel Dads. Lastly, I spent a lot of time researching contacts at different organizations and companies to contact for brand strategy partnerships.
By the end of the day, I had stressed myself out. I didn’t think I had accomplished as much as I could. I felt disorganized and I knew that I had wasted time doing certain things I didn’t need to do but that’s just a part of the learning curve. I woke up that night with a small anxiety attack and unable to breathe. Not my finest evening.
I felt more confident the last days of the work week, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday. I wrote another quick article for TNF, posted another blog, and made contact with a few large organizations for partnership opportunities. I was even getting a good feel for social media postings such as what worked well with our audiences and what didn’t. My confidence was improving.
I also applied to a few other writing jobs during the week. I was so proud of myself one day because I applied to this review writing job and I structured my cover letter according to how they structure their reviews—I got an e-mail saying I had made it to the next round of the interview process just a few hours later!
Having said that, I did stress myself out more than I needed to, something that is unproductive to my career and health. See, I don’t like to fail at anything, but most of all, I refuse to not succeed remarkably as a freelancer. I love succeeding, who doesn’t, but I am so adamant about succeeding because I am tired of the facial and verbal responses from people who do not understand the kind of work that I am doing.
During this first week people have asked me about my career and I quickly realized that most people do not know what freelancing is. It basically means that I am a contractor and I can work different projects as a writer/editor for a variety of companies throughout the year and I make money doing so.
I’ve also had a lot of people respond skeptically when I say that I am making money this month. If you must know, I make enough to pay all my bills (loan, car insurance, phone bill) and I am putting away a little bit in my savings, IRA, and Christmas savings fund. So, no, I’m not starving, and I do have an income. It’s called budgeting!
It’s also disheartening when people express their unwanted opinions that this is something temporary or unfeasible. It’s not. Or when they suggest job ideas that do not reflect my freelancing career. I do not want a permanent job. I don’t even want a part-time job that requires me to “go into work” at a business. I only want freelance jobs so when people continue to suggest jobs like that, I have to make myself breathe, be patient, and remind myself that either they don’t understand what I am doing or they are unable to fathom the type of money-making career/lifestyle that I have chosen because they are only used to a “traditional” 9-5 full-time career choice.
I’m also a little tired of back-handed comments that suggest that I’m “rebelling” or don’t quite understand what I’m doing, or that I won’t succeed or that I’ll be relying on others to financially support me. I have a good-size savings, much larger than any 25-year-old that I know. I have planned for this career change for months. I may look young, I do have a youthful face, but I know what I’m doing. I’ve researched this and I know what to expect, so TRUST ME!
So, yes, I’m letting other people affect me and I hate it. I’m not one to do that and it stops this second week of my freelancing career!
On a positive note, there were many successes of this first week. I learned a lot of things about doing social media, PR, and brand strategizing that I had not known before. I love learning so that was by far one of the best aspects of the week. I also got a captions editing job which will be a great welcome to my income for the month. And by making it to the second round of an interview process for a potential job, well, I am feeling pretty confident about my future as a freelancer.
Did I mention that I haven’t ever been this happy? I love my life! Even though I did a lot of work, I had a lot of fun with family and friends this week too! And I’m excited to say that I’m planning on moving to Dallas in a few weeks!
It’s been an eventful week. It’s been a fun week. It’s been a week of learning. Most of all, I’ve learned that I can do this. I see the light ahead. I will make this work and I’ll make it work very well! And now I know, that I shouldn’t worry about those faces or those comments because eventually everyone will see what I (and a few others) see. I’m unstoppable and I am so ready for this second week of my new career.