One of the toughest things about being a freelancer and entrepreneur is the need to constantly operate outside your comfort zone. Between defining what makes you stand out from the crowd, identifying who your ideal clients are, and creating a message that resonates with them (oh and doing amazing creative that keeps them coming back), the learning curve of having a successful creative business can feel pretty steep.
It’s enough to make you want to quit before you even start, right?
But since quitting isn’t an option (if it were, you wouldn’t be reading this), here are 5 sure-fire strategies to push through those limiting beliefs and achieve more than you ever imagined.
1) Remember the 40% rule
Several years ago, I joined a mixed martial arts gym. Aside from getting into the best shape of my life (oh, what this post-partum mama wouldn’t do to possess those abs again!), and meeting my now-husband (worth the steep membership fee alone), my Sensai’s mantra really stuck with me: when you think you’re totally spent, you’re only about 40% done. Apparently the Navy Seals also subscribe to this philosophy, so it appears to come on good authority!
2) Look at how far you’ve come, not how far you have to go
As any self-help book or meditation expert will tell you, anxiety comes from living in the future. Pulling off something big like re-positioning yourself, launching a new product or service, or speaking for the first time in front of a big audience are all big challenges that require a lot of work. It can be all too easy to look at ALLLLL the things you have to do (and probably don’t know how to do yet) and feel defeated. Instead, look at how far you’ve come and feel proud of the progress you’ve made. You’ll still be standing in the same place, but I promise you’ll feel a whole lot better, and take more inspired action from that place.
3) Identify where you need help
None of us came into the world knowing all we need to know, so why do we get so down on ourselves for not having all the skills and answers? Accept that growth requires learning and seek out the right learning opportunities for you. They might include attending events at professional associations such as Freelancer’s Union and Spark Design NY, participating in webinars by industry experts, investing in on-line courses, or hiring a coach. Identify what you need to move forward and invest the energy, time and resources you need to achieve your goals.
4) Celebrate your wins
As freelancers and entrepreneurs, we tend to blow right past our successes, plunging ourselves immediately into the next challenge. Give yourself a break and celebrate your wins no matter how small. The much-needed boost you’ll get as a result will help you embark on the next goal with enthusiasm and excitement.
5) Remember what your mum told you (or at least, what mine told me)
If none of these strategies work, feel free to invoke a saying I heard A LOT growing up: “There’s no such word as 'can’t,' only 'can, but haven’t tried.'”
Remember, the beliefs that are holding you back are just that, beliefs! When you make the conscious choice to let them go and surround yourself with people who will support your evolution, you can achieve more than you ever imagined possible! Now, it’s time to hear from you! Share a story or example of when you overcame a limiting belief in the comments below. I’d LOVE to hear it!
Justine Clay is a speaker and business coach for creative entrepreneurs and freelancers. Through a series of clear, actionable steps, Justine will teach you how to you identify what makes you stand out from the crowd, create a marketing message that resonates with your ideal clients, and build a successful and fulfilling creative business or career. Sign up for Justine’s free guide: How to Find High-Quality Clients and Get Paid What You’re Worth and start making monumental changes in your creative business or career today.