Why freelancers need to ditch their passion project(s)

Most freelancers I talk to have turned their passion into a business, and that’s beautiful for so many reasons. The biggest one being, you get to do what you LOVE every single day, without the bounds of a 9–5.

I also went on this same journey. I started out in content, then moved to copywriting, then marketing, and finally fell into brand strategy consulting. The journey has been joyful and full of surprises! Good and bad. I still do love the journey

However, here’s the caveat

As a freelancer, you absolutely LOVE what you do, and every day is full of surprises — till you realize that a “passion project” is the wrong mindset to run your freelance business with.

No, seriously

You can love what you do, but if you’re going to get serious about freelancing and working independently — you need to stop looking at what you’re doing as a passion project.

You are now a business owner.

https://images.app.goo.gl/tWwhhLvTMrTvgvzR8

Why mindset matters

Not many people talk about this, but being a freelancer requires you to have a growth mindset. This is one of the first pieces of advice my mentor gave me as I was just starting to freelance.

He used to say, “Bada socho, challang maro!” — Think big, jump now!

A growth mindset is commonly associated with phrases like these:

  • Learning is not hard for me
  • I enjoy challenges
  • I like experimenting
  • Failure is never final
  • What’s next?
  • How do I do this better?

Growth-minded people don’t think small, they think big. And that’s their superpower. Their superpower lies in finding what they can contribute to the world, and making it a better place than what they left it.

They don’t like the status quo.

It, therefore, comes as no surprise that if you’re a freelancer, THIS is the mindset you need to have.

You have to have a growth mindset, to conquer and win each goddamn day! You are born a winner, you just need to prove it to yourself.

This is the best part about freelancing. Breaking your own mental barriers by having a growth mindset. Your growth mindset will then drive you towards success, and it’s something I’m saying out of experience.

The world is your oyster

As a freelancer, you pick the path, and then walk the same one. You can decide your future, quite literally. HOW COOL, right?

If you’re a growth-minded freelancer, you will constantly be on the lookout for opportunities and with that, be excited to take on new challenges.

Your superpower of being okay with experimenting, and then succeeding or failing is what’s going to take you far.

Re-read this paragraph from the first section of this article:

I started out in content, then moved to copywriting, then marketing, and finally fell into brand strategy consulting.

Today, I’m making about 3x of what I was making in my full-time job. A double-digit number when I left corporate.

I tried everything I could, didn’t give up, and found what truly makes my heart sing -and then double-downed on it.

With so many ways to drive your freelance career, the world is your oyster.

Passion project be gone

Passion projects are great, but they aren’t centered or focused around things that matter, like ……. money and….. growing the business

Passion projects make you happy no doubt but there’s an uncanny attitude of casualness associated with it.

You cannot be ‘casually freelancing’ unfortunately. It’s a path to doom.

For someone who’s trying to become a successful freelancer — casualness is only going to take you SO far.

My mom always says, remember why you started. And, my reason for quitting the 9–5 was so that I could truly do what I love, at scale, with the people I want to see growing with me.

Had I looked at this entire thing as a passion project, there is no way I would be here, today.

Read this piece I posted on Linkedin, for example. Pasting a snippet here.

https://www.linkedin.com/feed/update/urn:li:activity:6923513522572132352/?commentUrn=urn%3Ali%3Acomment%3A(activity%3A6923513522572132352%2C6925097226847277056)

I don’t think I would’ve said this if I didn’t take my career and growth seriously.

Heck, it took me nearly 2 years to fully embrace my “growth mindset”. It clearly does not happen overnight.

Growth is a process.

Focus. Focus.

As a freelancer who’s looking to succeed, beyond your wildest dreams, you need to look at these 5 aspects

  1. Processes
  2. Systems
  3. Growth opportunities
  4. A network that turns into networth
  5. Money

Since this is very subjective, to each his own on how you look at these list items. My advice would be to look at each of these on a “road to success” model.

What processes can you implement so that you spend less time doing X?

What systems do you need in place so you achieve X in Y time?

What’s something new that you can try this month?

Who are the people you should be talking to?

What amount of money do you need to make per month to make X per year?

That’s some guidance, without telling you where the road heads.

Everything is figureoutable.

Finale

I hope this article helps you break out of your current mindset, and pushes you towards growth, and the growth mindset — for, that is the only way to succeed and grow.

Remember why you started. Remember where you want to be. Carve the path towards your end goal.

If you liked this piece, do tell me by commenting back, clapping for it, or alternatively posting on Linkedin, and tagging me. I also share brand strategy tips and tricks on Instagram, you can find me here.

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