I do love the New Year. A fresh start, new opportunities and a clean calendar waiting to be filled.
A few resolutions have been made here – mainly to do with being more efficient and making more conscious choices about how I spend my time. Essentially that means I will no longer mindlessly play Candy Crush or browse Twitter for an hour every day then moan that I have no time to do the things I want to do.
Have you turned over some new leaves?
January is also the time when I think about the direction in which I want to take my freelance business over the next 12 months. I’ll be taking half a day next week to really think about my goals and whether my business is giving me the working life that I want.
I already know there are some areas on which I want to focus:
- Expanding my network and working with a wider range of clients to stop me from getting complacent.
- Reducing the amount I travel each week so that I see even more of my family.
- Developing some passive income (e.g. monthly retainers or products which I can create once then sell multiple times) so that I can continue to take long breaks over the summer without feeling the pinch.
So, I’ll be looking at each of these areas (and any more that I identify) and setting some specific goals for each one. I’ll then schedule those goals throughout the year so that I’m not trying to do or change too much at any one time.
What are your freelancing goals for the year?
Are you an experienced freelancer looking to improve your business, like me? What areas of your working life could use a little attention?
- Are you working too many hours and losing sight of your family focus? How about gradually cutting down on work for your least profitable/rewarding clients?
- Or are you struggling to find enough work? Perhaps you could try some new marketing strategies and schedule an hour of marketing activities per day?
- Are you enjoying your work environment? Or do you need to search for more projects which allow you to work from home or outside the home?
Or are you brand new to freelancing, and aiming to make this the year when you take the plunge? What specific goals will you put in place to make sure it happens? Can you:
- Make casual contact with one ex-colleague each month in preparation for some more serious networking later in the year.
- Start saving a standard amount of money each month – whatever you can manage – to help you smooth out the peaks and troughs of freelancing income.
- Work though the Start Freelancing Series here on this website – one step per month – to put some structure and support around your new career plan.
Whatever you want to achieve in 2014, make it more likely to happen by:
- Breaking your goals into smaller achievable tasks.
- Spreading those tasks out into a realistic timeframe.
- Setting out rewards for achieving your goals.
- Reminding yourself that creating a thriving freelance business will give you the flexibility your family needs.
- Tell someone else your plans so you feel some external pressure to carry them through.
Go on – tell us one of your goals for 2014. Putting it out there makes it so much more real!