You’re all alone.
You haven’t showered in weeks.
You’re eating moldy bread.
You sleep with one eye open and carry a dagger with you.
Congrats! You’re in the middle of a zombie apocalypse.
Wait a minute. This is a blog about freelance blogging! What do zombies have to do with dreams of freelancing success?
Think about it. Both require a special set of skills in order to survive. Whether you’re fending off zombies or trying to rise above other bloggers competing for jobs, it’s important to be prepared.
Being prepared for a successful blogging career is essential because you will face uncertainty at some point. The difference between a rock star blogger and someone who will just get by is in how you react to those uncertainties.
Make an Emergency Kit
If you want to want to sustain yourself during a zombie apocalypse, you need to make sure you have the right tools.
Most emergency kits include stuff like medication, water, Swiss army knives, and non-perishable food items. Spam, anyone?
Now, you don’t need to hoard cans of Spam to be a great blogger, but you do need to gather up resources in case of emergencies.
Here’s a basic list of things every blogger should have in their “emergency kit”:
- Savings to fall back on in case you’re having a slow month.
- A list of blog post ideas in case you’ve got writer’s block, or aren’t motivated that day to find new ideas to pitch to clients.
- Productivity tools to motivate you when you feel like slacking off. StayFocusd is a great tool that restricts access on time-wasting websites. Another awesome tool called Rescue Time helps you be more efficient by showing you how you spend time on your computer.
- A way to back up your hard drive in case your computer decides to go cuckoo on you.
- A comfortable work area, even better if it’s a space solely dedicated to your freelancing awesomeness.
- A list of clients you’ve previously worked with. You can follow up with them during your slower months and see if there’s any work available.
Making an emergency kit frees your mind from worrying about what happens if and when things go wrong. It makes it that much easier to focus on what really matters when building your freelance blogging career.
Focus on Essentials
What are the chances that a zombie will care if you carry around the latest designer handbag? In fact, is money important to anyone trying to run away from zombies? I’d bet people tend to focus on what is most important to their survival: shelter, sanitation and food.
Don’t fall victim to the designer handbag syndrome. Yes, it’d be nice to have a fancy new computer that can play the latest games, but is it really necessary? Focus on what is important: your clients. What do they value? Will they care if you own a fancy computer, or do they just want to know that you’ll complete assignments on time?
Like zombies, your clients only want you for your brain. You need to cultivate your writing skills and deliver quality content for your client in order to make it in this business.
Find Some Friends
The chances of you going totally bonkers is pretty high if you feel like you’re all alone in your journey.
Whether you’re fighting zombies or trying to break into freelance blogging, you need to surround yourself with like-minded people.
If you were fending off zombies, who would you rather have as your friends: people who will stick by you, or someone who’ll bolt at the first sign of trouble?
When you’re breaking into freelance blogging, would you rather have friends that tell you it’s just not possible to make a full time living that way, or others that are trying to pursue the same path as you and are getting pretty successful at it?
During a zombie apocalypse, people might only find each other by chance. In the blogging world, you can actively seek them out. The internet is at your disposal! Try googling bloggers that are doing the same things you are. Seek out a mentor, join a mastermind group, or even sign up for useful memberships such as the Freelance Writers Den (aff. link).
Don’t be afraid to ask for help, either. Many successful bloggers started off in the same place you are now, and really want to help others achieve success. Their advice is priceless when you’re planning out your freelance blogging path.
Plan an Evacuation Route
No matter how prepared you are, events might happen that are beyond your control. Whether zombies found a new way to break into your fortress of solitude or your client is trying to skip payment, you need to make a plan to get out of your situation.
You don’t need to make a physical map like zombie survivors, but you do need a mental one.
Write down the top 5 scenarios that can go wrong with clients in your business. To do so, consider each client you’ve worked with and take note of issues that arose from each project. Go on, write all of them down. Note which issues happen more often than others. Focus on those ones first.
Here’s a list for you to get started:
- What if a client doesn’t pay?
- What if a client isn’t clear on his or her expectations of me?
- What if a client asks for too many revisions?
- What if a client is often unreachable when I have questions about the project?
- What if a client is late in their payment?
Being a successful blogger and surviving a zombie apocalypse aren’t too different, now are they? Just remember to keep your wits about you, gather as many useful resources as you can, and surround yourself with awesome people.
Not only will you feel more confident in your career, it will save you hours of stress and aggravation in the long run. You can just focus on how to be the awesome blogger you already are.