Although I haven’t been self-employed for very long, I’ve been doing the hustle for quite a while now. I started freelancing online last July and before that I always had a part-time job to help make some extra money.
I never really thought about it, but I’ve always had the drive to earn more, learn more, and explore more opportunities than most of the people around me. I’m definitely a hustler by nature (the good kind!).
That nature hasn’t changed, and in fact being a solopreneur is really all about the hustle in my opinion and I don’t think the successful solopreneurs of the world ever stop hustling. Here’s why:
You Make Your Own Success
As a solopreneur, the sky’s the limit in terms of how much you work, how much you earn, and what projects you take on. But that also means you have to make your own success. You have to decide how to charge for your services and sometimes this can mean the difference between getting a job or not getting a job.
Additionally, you make your own success by continually hustling for more clients or higher paying clients. You are also in charge of deciding if it’s worth it to take a higher paying job that you may not enjoy as much. There can be a fine line between the benefit of getting paid more vs. enjoying your work. I’ve been there in my former career, and it still happens in my business as a solopreneur sometimes too.
In the beginning, I took every job that came my way. Now that I’ve got an established client base, I am more selective about what opportunities I pursue, but I still regularly hunt for new jobs and clients to add to my business.
Clients Come and Go
I’ve had quite a bit of turnover on my client list lately. I let a client go and we ended it on good terms, then the next week I lost a client due to changes in her business structure. It was a tough week, but then I got a new client that I’m really excited about and that will more than make up for the income I lost from those two previous clients.
I tell you this because clients come and go. You won’t always be a good fit for every job, so don’t get bummed out when a client tells you this. Be gracious in your acceptance of their decision and move on. There’s always more work out there if you know where to look.
Even when I have a full client list, I’m still always on the hunt for more. Again, because clients come and go, I always want to make sure I have enough business to pay my bills. Plus when you reach the point of a full client list, you have more control over which clients to cut, which new clients to work with, and you are more likely to be able to demand higher rates for your work. I love being in the driver’s seat, so I’m always hustling for new clients.
Self-Employed Solopreneurs Have High Expenses
If you make the transition to being self-employed, make sure you account for the extra expenses you’ll have to pay for yourself. For example, self-employment taxes can be a killer. You also need to make sure you account for paying for your own insurance and funding 100% of your own retirement. PayPal fees can also be a killer. Luckily, I found a hack to help me with that one. (Hint: It’s Freshbooks!)
You may need to ask for a raise or hustle to find a little more work if you decide to become self-employed.
Basically, being a solopreneur is all about the hustle, no matter what industry you are in. Being a hustler by nature has really given me a leg up in this business, but it’s a skill that can be learned too.
Are you a hustler?