A Freelancer's Most Important Skills

Think you've got what it takes to succeed as a freelancer? If you think you're all set because you've got top-notch graphic design, coding, or copywriting skills you might be shocked to learn that success as a freelancer requires more than that!

Here are 3 life skills that will help you succeed as a freelancer.

Time Management Skills

There you are on your first day as a freelancer. You wake up and the whole day awaits you. How will you spend it? Remember, when you're a freelancer there won't be anyone around telling you what to do or when to do it. But time is like money and if you don't keep a close eye on the way you spend it, you'll end up losing more than you realize.

Also remember that you're free to break out of the "normal work hours" mold. If you really aren't an early riser, sleep in. Just make sure you work later into the day. If you need to do as much work as you can between 7:30 and 2:30 when the kids are away at school, then that needs to be your "work" time.

Once you decide your working hours, think about all you have to get done and the order in which you want to tackle those tasks. Then use whatever time management tools you find most effective so you can get it all done!


More than any other skill, your success as a freelancer is going to come down to a single word: discipline. All the "to do" lists in the world won't do you any good if you can't get yourself to stay focused on the tasks at hand. If you're working at home, it is incredibly easy to get side-tracked because it seems there's always something "more important" to do around the house or at the gym or wherever.

But those tasks aren't more important than your freelance career. They may be equally important, and that's where discipline comes in handy. You need to stay on task and schedule your other tasks "after work" just as you would if you worked for someone else.

Some freelancers find they're more disciplines if they work outside their homes. If you have the type of job that you can do anywhere there's wireless internet then see if it works for you. You'll be amazing at the number of different "offices" you can have when you start exploring your neighborhood. Public libraries, local coffee shops, restaurants, municipal parks, airports and lots of other locations are going wireless.


Perseverance is another important skill because there will be times when you feel like giving up. Finding and contracting new work is stressful and tiring and too many unsuccessful attempts can discourage even the most optimistic individuals. Believe it or not, even freelancers with too much work feel like throwing in the towel sometimes. You can only work 24/7 so many weeks in a row before feeling the effects of burn-out.

So take a break or come up with a new marketing angle and keep on going! The rewards are out there but it's up to you to go get them!

In next article, find out some truths about freelancer's life.




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