Freelance Success: What To Think About When You Are Busy


Freelance commissions can be like waiting for a bus, you wait for ages and then three come along at once. When success strikes, it’s like a revelation that you knew you were doing the right thing by going freelance – all along. But before you get to cocky it’s probably best to sit down and think about what’s happening to get it in perspective. Here’s some tips on managing a successful streak.

A range of emotions hits you when you are doing well. It can be anything from relief, dread about wondering how you are going to cope with workload, to a smugness that you knew you were brilliant all along. However, regardless of how you feel about getting a lot of work in, there are many practical considerations to mull over when your proverbial ship comes in.

Change your routines

When you are suddenly busy, when before you were not, it means you have to radically adapt to a new routine. This can mean your workhours may sabotage aspects of life you were becoming used to, like going to shops, evening TV, housework or family time. Just make sure you plan the work out best you can in a calendar with hours needed to work that are clearly defined. If you resist the changes you need to make, you will find yourself struggling to fulfil your increased work obligations.

Save up

Put a bit of the money away as ‘rainy day money’. Any opportunity to accumulate money in a savings account as a freelancer should be taken. Even if it ends up being blown on your tax at year’s end, at least you’ll have it. ‘Make hay while the sun shines’ as they say.

Reward yourself

Don’t go crazy and blow all your cash (refer to the previous point) but a reward can be ‘a meal’, ‘an item of clothing’, simply mark a small expense as an acknowledgement that you have worked your butt off when the invoice is paid – condition yourself to making success feel worth it – with small but marked occasions.


If you have too much work, see if anything can be shared with someone you trust professionally. Take a modest margin so you are not just an unpaid manager. Remember – this can be a business expense also, for tax purposes.

Wait for payment

Before you do anything, wait for payment. We all know that you may have to chase for some payments. You may get paid a lot later than you had bargained for so don’t get caught out – and do politely, succinctly chase for payment when it’s due. You’ve done your work to satisfaction – you are owed.

Nurture good clients

Don’t presume that because you now ‘have your feet under the table’ as they say, with a good client that that client won’t go somewhere else if they feel like it or if someone else pitches them or undercuts your service. Make sure you take good care of the business relationships you value or they just might fizzle out. Check in to ensure the unique qualities of your service are not forgotten, as a working relationship develops.

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