Do you ‘get’ the concept of finding your passion and building a business around it, but are struggling to make it happen?
I get it. Being told to find your passion is like being told to cheer up when you’re feeling depressed. Not only is it not helpful, it’s counter-productive because it just makes you feel even more disconnected from your inner gifts.
I’ve been helping creative professionals build profitable businesses for more than 15 years. First as an agent for freelance art directors, copywriters, and fashion illustrators, and now as a business coach for freelancers and creative entrepreneurs. And one thing I know for sure is that finding and embracing your unique talent is the key to building a thriving business.
Wherever you are on the spectrum of finding purpose and meaning through your creative expertise, everything you need is within you. It’s just a matter of bringing it to light, little by little.
Here are 5 ways to help you do that:
1) Meditate (any which way you can)
As those of you who’ve been hanging out with me a while know, I fervently believe personal and professional development go hand-in-hand. If you don’t manage your mind someone else will do it for you (and believe me, that’s never going to end well!) So how do you do that? Pretty much every entrepreneurial or spiritual leader will tell you the same thing - through meditation.
I know, I know, meditating is hard. Who wants to sit still, trying (and failing) to still their monkey mind, especially when there’s so much to do? If sitting still and meditating feels too challenging, try listening to a guided meditation on your iPhone as you walk. Anything that stills your mind, even for a minute, is helpful. One minute a day. We can all try that, right?
2) Look for ways to feel inspired
I can’t tell you how many times I get an idea for a newsletter, talk or program by listening to an interview with someone I admire. In fact, this post was inspired by this Brené Brown talk. No matter what field you’re in, there are thought-leaders and pioneers paving the way. Read their books, go to conferences where they’re speaking, watch or read interviews with them. Greatness is contagious, so rub elbows with those who’ve got it going on.
3) Get input from a trusted partner
The tricky thing about gifts is they come so easily to us, we think everyone possesses them. When in fact, it’s precisely that gift that others need, and will pay for. Using a trusted partner as a mirror to help you identify your talents can be incredibly clarifying, so consider recruiting a great client, a supportive friend/accountability buddy, or a coach to help shine a light on it.
4) Identify the problems you are uniquely equipped to solve
The thing that makes your unique gift have value and IMPACT in the world is figuring out what problems you solve, and for whom. Knowing who your ideal client is will give you clarity, purpose and make your efforts all the more effective. Not knowing who your ideal clients are, or how you solve their biggest challenges, is often the missing piece of the puzzle for struggling entrepreneurs or freelancers, so if you could use some clarity around that, let’s chat.
5) Communicate how your ideal client benefits from your gifts
As a result of working with you, will your ideal client:
- Have a more successful brand
- Feel healthier
- Have more free time
- Make more money
- Look better
People will only hire you if they can immediately see how doing so will positively transform their life. Take the time to really get clear on these benefits and make those the center of your messaging and content. I promise, it’s a game changer.
I get that there’s a lot of information here and putting it all together, in the right order and sticking with it long enough to get results is a tall order. If you’re ready to get the clarity you need to align your gifts, message and services with the clients who have the burning desire and money to invest in working with you, let’s chat, I’d love to help you reach your goals.
This is a post from a member of the Freelancers Union community. If you’re interested in sharing your expertise, your story, or some advice you think will help a fellow freelancer out, feel free to send your blog post to us here.