Freelancing is a fun profession, everyone knows that not only do you get to be your own boss, but you get to set your own prices, you get to set your own hours, and you can do it whenever and however you feel like with the only person you’re beholden too at the end of the day being yourself.
However, it’s not something that everyone can just pick up and go with. In fact, it’s often extremely difficult to get into it at first because the market is so saturated with other people. If you haven’t found the best freelancing website visit IMHO Reviews and their list.
Here are 5 skills that you should consider either improving yourself at, or learn to cultivate, because these are skills that every freelancer – regardless of profession – needs to learn to be successful.
This isn’t really so much a skill, but an attribute that you need to reaffirm with constantly. Why?
Well the simple fact of the matter that Freelancing is a job that is extremely hard to do. You’re not going to ever be ‘rich’ in the grand sense that you’ll have millions of dollars in the bank and can jettison across the world on a whim.
Rather, you’ll be ‘rich’ in experiences because Freelancing is a job that allows you to meet so many different people and do so many different things. You need to be sharp, focused, and dedicated to doing this job and being successful at it, so learning TO be dedicated in the first place will help you actually enjoy this profession through the ups, and the downs.
2. Time Management
Time is honestly one of the most important resources that a Freelancer has, and it’s pretty imperative that you learn how to manage it. After all, it is free and you own it, but you cannot gain any more of it if you don’t use it wisely. If you spend an hour doing something, you don’t get that hour back ever, and if you have deadlines coming up… well… it makes it even worse for you. With that said, how do you successfully learn to manage your time a lot better?
A lot of Freelancers simply have a set schedule. True, your schedule can be whatever it is you want it to be when working (meaning you can work a little bit here, little bit then, little bit later) but a lot of successful Freelancers work at the same time, on a set day, for a set amount of hours. This is a job after all, and if you have the discipline to sit down and do your job you’ll find that your output will be a lot better than it would be otherwise.
3. Money Management
Unfortunately, you don’t go into Freelancing to be rich. A lot of people think that if you are your own boss, then you’ll make so much money because you don’t have to pay anyone else, but that’s not further from the truth. In fact a lot of Freelancers – especially early on – live from commission to commission and typically don’t see a decent return of time investment till later on. In fact a lot of Freelancers for the first several years of their jobs still maintain a part time job to help with bills and food.
So in essence you need to learn how to budget correctly and learn how to stick with that budget. You need to learn how taxes work, how to keep track of business related expenses, how to conserve, and how to be frugal. When $10 is considered a major investment, learning how to better spend your money and keep it will help out a lot and keep you focused on your Freelancing job.
As a Freelancer you honestly need to keep track of a lot of information all at once, and it’s something that you need to learn how to be better at. Nothing makes Freelancing harder than simply having things everywhere and not being able to recall it, and the difference between a job that takes you an hour and one that takes half the time sometimes comes down to remembering where information or tools are.
You don’t want things just thrown around everywhere, and having everything that you need to know written down on the back of an envelope on the bottom of some other note pile.
Instead, get things that will help you improve your organization. Folders, drawers, or some sort of filing system will save you so much time, money, and headaches and organization as a skill.
5. Speed Reading
This sort of ties a little bit in with Time Management up above, but is completely separate simply because it trains you in different ways and is – actually – a skill that you develop that touches on several other skills that come in handy.
So what exactly is Speed Reading? Speeding Reading is the ability to read text quickly, and retain information on what you’ve read. It’s not just zipping your eyes all along and not thinking, but actively absorbing the information in and being able to properly contextualize the text.
So how does this help Freelancers exactly? Simply because, as stated above, time is a precious resource, and Speed Reading can help you quickly get the information that you know, and allow Freelancers to move.
Not only that, but learning to Speed Read has also been proven to help with mental sharpness and acuity, meaning that you retain a sharp sense of intelligence and can even improve it, AND it improves cognitive function the more you learn to do it well. This means that as you grow and develop your Freelance Skillset, you’re able to develop those skills faster, and a lot easier.
Honestly, no matter what industry you work in, Speed Reading is a skill that helps ALL Freelancers in the end.
And there you have it. If you’re able to learn those 5 skills – or even know how to do them well right now – then you’ll certainly be ready. Ready enough that you’ll be more prepared than most Freelancers who dive headfirst into the industry will be, of course.