My First Year of Self-Employment: I did it!!

December 2019 marked the one-year anniversary of me graduating and starting to work as a Creative. It has been one of the more challenging and rewarding experiences of my life.

I am a Taurean, which means I like stability and certainty and I am not a natural risk-taker… I tend to need to be pushed to make a big decision or take a risk. As you can imagine this makes self-employment challenging! I also am like most Creatives in that we tend to doubt our abilities and be very self-critical, putting yourself out there as a brand is scary… and hard.

But. 

Someone wise said that nothing in life worth having came easily… or something like that… and achieving two of my #pennyslist goals of being financially independent and supporting myself with my own business last year has been so rewarding. I am a single mum of two (8yrs and 11yrs) and being able to support us, doing a job that I love, with the flexibility to be there for them is what inspired me to study.

However, one thing I wasn’t really prepared for, was how unsettling and hard it would be for me to adjust to working life after study. I vividly remember thinking at the time that I wanted to be one year into the future when everything was sorted and I knew it was going to be ok. Well, I am not sure that everything is sorted, but it is all ok… well it’s great. I am very much still growing my business, but I have some stability now, with regular clients and income.

My dreams and ideas that seemed so far away from being a reality when I was studying and even eight months ago, are now starting to become my life, it is exciting and satisfying to know that I can do it. It is now giving me the confidence to dream bigger and think outside the box and believe that it will happen.

I am a baby-steps person and believe that things happen for a reason, and if it is right it will work out, and if it doesn’t work out it wasn’t right for me. So my journey is a little slower than others, but as each new thing is a success, I gain confidence and dream a little bigger. I keep my mind open to new opportunities and directions and by being my own boss, I can follow each new idea and opportunity as I feel inspired, this is the joy of being self-employed.

Now when I first started to think about writing this blog post I was intending it to be a single post, fairly short, a bit of a reflection and a celebration of my first year… but 2500 words into it I realised that I had quite a bit to say about my first year… challenges I had faced and how I overcame them, what I learned, how my business works and the things I love about that, what challenges there are…

So, I have decided that I will separate them into a series of blog posts, cut them into relevant and easily digestible portions that I hope will be interesting 😊

This also aligns with my realisation that as a freelancer, people are investing in me as much as my work or products, so I should start sharing… me… on my social media and not just my work. So, I have started doing some Instagram stories where I speak to the camera and tell people about my work, or my day, or my processes, which is kinda scary putting yourself out there and feels quite awkward, but is becoming more natural and is a great, quick way for people to get to know who you are. Writing this series of blog posts is also another way for me to bring me into my business and for people to learn more about me, and perhaps find some inspiration and common ground with me.

Thanks for reading and do look out for the next post in this series … My First Year of Self-Employment: How did it happen?

Penny xxx

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