Going Full-time Freelance: Encouraging Acceptance from Others

Many misconceptions exist regarding freelancers and the work they do. When these misconceptions come from strangers, they can be minor nuisances. 

Hands on keyboardHowever, when the lack of acceptance comes from family members or clients, it can be disheartening and damaging to your business.

If you’re a young freelance designer, you must prepare yourself for many misconceptions regarding your experience level, your ability to run a business and whether you truly deserve to leave the corporate world when others your age are working away in cubicles all day. Here are some of the battles you may encounter both from family members and from clients and how you can overcome them.

Family Approval    

Few things are better than having those you love accept the work you do. Gaining the approval of family members and friends is often crucial to feel successful and productive as a freelancer. However, when spouses are jealous of their freelancing partners or when family members don’t truly accept your working from home situation, major complications can follow.

First, you must never work solely for the approval of a spouse or other loved ones. Working solely for the approval of others only will set you on the fast track towards disappointment and resentment. Rather, begin each day knowing you’re working for the personal enjoyment of doing what you love. You must also reward yourself for the courage it took to become a full-time freelance designer.

Next, shield your self-confidence from others asking if you actually receive a paycheck or if you even do anything all day. Questions such as this are meant to discourage freelancers and often come from places of jealousy and resentment. The most you can do is calmly and positively explain your business model, show examples of your work and hope for the best.

Client Acceptance

With a little luck, you’ll only experience positive relationships with your clients. However, situations can arise where you’ll encounter less than professional clients who, because of their age and corporate business experience, feel they more fully understand which direction your design projects should take. While the client has every right to offer project specifications, you also must utilize your design principles to create stellar results. In these situations, the most you can do is offer your insight in a professional manner and hope the client will take your advice.

If you encounter clients who are hesitant to hire you because of your young age or because of your newness to the design business, you may begin to question your qualifications. However, by doing such things as creating a professional website with portfolio samples and improving your credibility through the work you create, clients will soon be knocking down your door requesting your design services.

The most important thing to do when encountering difficult clients is remain professional. When your experience or skills are being questioned, take the high road and commit to achieving top notch results on the projects of those clients. This will disprove their doubts while ensuring your professionalism remains intact.

Being a freelancer can offer amazing benefits. Not only can you create a customized work schedule, you’re free to design all day, every day. By accepting that not everyone will understand the work of a freelancer, you’ll be less disheartened when others question the legitimacy or existence of your business. All you must do is work diligently for your own satisfaction rather than for the approval of others and, as you achieve success, the approval should follow. In the meantime, you’ll be the one working on your own time while others are stuck in the office!


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