The Power of “No” for the Creative Freelancer

Being a creative freelancer instead of working for a larger corporation can have many advantages, including the freedom and flexibility to pursue the work you love on your own terms.

There is one magic little word that will really help you have the freedom you want. That word is “no.” Now, you probably associate “no” with the rejection you occasionally get when you are preparing bids or pitching projects. It can be pretty tough to be the recipient of the word “no.”

However, saying “no” is a different experience all together. When you say no to projects you don’t really want, you are keeping yourself available for projects that will be more satisfying for you. When you say no to rates that won’t provide enough money for you and your family you are honoring your talent and your experience.

The biggest mistake most creative freelancers make when they are starting out is that they say yes to too many kinds of work from too many different kinds of clients at too many prices, instead of focusing on the work they do best for the clients they like best at the prices that respect their skill.

According to the Technically Baltimore article, “When Growing A Creative Business, Keep These Two Things In Mind” written by Stephen Babcock,

“When building a business, Brooke Hall of What Works Studio said, being in the position to say “no” to potential clients making unreasonable demands is incredibly important. “To say: ‘I’m only in a position to do this caliber of work or I’m not going to do it at all,” Hall said.”

Finding a community of like-minded creative freelancers will give you the confidence you need to pursue the work that makes you shine.

"I've worked with Eric on a variety of projects over the years, for several different ventures. Whether designing a website for a commercial client, organizing an education event for creative professionals, or pioneering new frontiers in SEO for the medical industry, Eric is always professional, forward-thinking, and an absolute pleasure to work with. I trust his recommendations about website best practices completely, and his design aesthetic is both innovative and universally appealing. Simply put, he's one of the best in the business."
Jeff Kent, Partner, Campfire Digital

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