Perhaps 2017 Is a Good Time To Change Directions
Ever feel like you’re just spinning your wheels?
Lately, I don’t know what it is. The holidays, the cold air or constant craving for sweets and a nap but I’ve been feeling less motivated to manage my freelancing business this season.
I can’t be the only one that feels like this.
I want to change directions in 2017. I find the whole process of blogging to be tedious and time-consuming. Deep down I know blogging wasn’t supposed to be this way. I also think that social media has become something like a jealous boyfriend who makes you feel guilty for not being there constantly to respond to every tweet and comment.
I hate feeling guilty and I severely dislike how much social media is an integral part of blogging and freelancing. Isn’t there a better way?
I’d rather connect with people on a more personal level. Email or Skype, real conversations. Although, online conversations aren’t truly “real.” Online conversations are still better than emoji’s, thumbs ups and likes/loves.
In the two years I’ve been pursuing a freelancing career, I learned that nothing is constant and forever. Things are always changing. Algorithms and privacy policies change almost every night. And as we give away our best kept secrets for free, it seems we have to keep working harder and harder to get noticed somewhere.
Fear of missing out is a big concern. As a freelancer, it’s easy to think that you will be left behind if you’re not up on the most current such-and-such topic. It’s like how Black Friday was moved to Thursday (Thanksgiving), and if you were asleep, you missed out. Shame on you. And, If you’re not always connected and in the know, you’ll miss out on grabbing that next best topic post. Then, you’ll be second, third, or fourth best. Not everyone gets a trophy here.
Exhausted – Time To Change Direction
Bleh, I’m exhausted just thinking about all the time that goes into the perfect blog post.
“Best practices” say you need 2000+ word posts, well crafted and perfectly optimized images (and not to mention that you need to have at least 5 different sizes for social media posts), and God forbid you have one. Small. Editing. Mistake.
In the last year, I got a clear understanding of what I love and don’t love about freelancing.
I love to read! Turns out that’s the best thing for a writer.
I love to write! Turns out this too is the best thing for a writer. To write every day.
I don’t love the blogging process of research, optimization, editing, and image development. And I don’t love the need for social media to get my content noticed.
So far, social media has not helped me much. In the vast blogsophere, I’m but a tiny speck hiding under the couch with all the other dust bunnies and no one is searching for us.
I could hire a virtual assistant to help with the editing, social media, and design. But I don’t make enough freelancing money to justify hiring one. Plus, I’m a control freak. It’s a circle alright. An untamed circle of crazy.
But moving forward, if I change direction with my freelancing and writing, will this mean I have given up on my original dream?
Guilt sets in and I feel an obligation to finish what I started. But, is there even a “finish” if things are constantly changing?
Two articles that I came across in the same night solidified the fact that: #1: I need to give myself permission to make my own changes – and that it’s okay to change my mind. And #2: That change is a normal part of personal growth – even a requirement for life.
It makes no sense to continue to trudge through something that doesn’t make you happy. To work hard at something that takes precious moments away from the things you love like family, pets, or your couch and a bag of Pepperidge Farms Chesapeake cookies.
It’s hearing other freelancers talk about these things that remind me it’s perfectly okay to not “finish” what you started.
Who knows. Maybe what I started was meant to lead me to this change.
I love writing. But I don’t love being labeled as a “money writer” anymore. Sure I want to write about money and finance but I also want to write about the books I read, and things that really touch me like the two articles above, and how the newest software gadget makes me giddy. I want to be more open with my writing and I eventually want to write fiction.
I don’t want to worry about making perfect blog posts and perfectly optimized images anymore. If it happens, it happens. What I want is to not spend half a day trying to perfect a post and ruminate over whether it’s ready for publication or not. I just want to give myself 30 minutes or so to write it then post it. Imperfections and all. I’ll still post to social media but I won’t track my analytics like an obsessed teenager anymore.
My business is not going anywhere, not that many people would notice. But in 2017, I’ll make do with the little time I have as a part-time freelancer who happens to write about money and other unrelated stuff. Instead of a part-time freelancer who writes mainly about money.
And this post will be full of grammatical and, probably, punctuation errors. Because I can’t be bothered with editing right now.
What about you?
Has this season got you thinking about taking a different direction with your life or your business? One that has you putting your best efforts into things that you enjoy, and not things that you feel you “must” do?