Have you ever carried out additional work on top of a day job to fuel (read: fund) a passion or ultimate dream of yours?
The trouble for me appeared when working on other people’s stuff detracted from working on my own stuff.
Fire Yourself. Ban yourself from doing that kind of work ever again.
I recently took the decision to fire myself from freelance design work, at a time where work was increasing.
Design for me provided short term additional financial gain. The sacrifice was I no longer had any time to create my real work. I reached the point where I was no longer prepared for this trade off to continue.
How I fired myself
I simply stopped this type of work. I informed my existing design clients that regrettably I was no longer in a position to take on more work whilst thanking them for their custom.
I do allow use of my design skills when working on my own passion and my own products. This is way more effective in the long run than working on someone else’s projects in the short term. This way I am building my own empire and ensuring my future freedom.
As soon as I fired myself, naturally, lots of design enquiries came my way.
I turned them all down.
People said I was stupid. I didn’t listen to them.
Less money meant I went without a few things, which would have ended up being just distractions anyway. The positive side effect being I had increased focus on my real work.
On this flip side I launched 2 new products, sold roughly 26 digital products in just over one month and more importantly, got my flow for my real work back.
How to Fire Yourself
- Assess the work you are doing and what you can drop.
- Make the decision that you will stop doing this work immediately.
- If you are not in a position to fire yourself yet, keep working on it. Reduce, reduce, reduce.
- Stop doing things that detract from your real work wherever financially possible.
- You may fire yourself from non financial based activities also e.g T.V.
- Simplify – What do you really need to do the real work? Think how you can eliminate subscription based services like cable TV, magazines etc. Sell your unused stuff.
- Burn your back up plan and get going!
I am super grateful for all the design work and other work that I have done in the past.
I realise that not everyone will financially be in a position to fire themselves fully, but working towards this at least partially is something I think everyone can do. Cut something out.
Work on your real work. You know what your real work is.
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