overcome fear

5 Karate-Inspired Moves to Beat Fear and Doubt for Freelancers

Should freelancers use grammar checker tools. Makealivingwriting.com

Are you one of those freelancers in the writer’s dojo who secretly thinks you’re too weak at this writing thing to earn a living?

Maybe you’re scared you’ll screw up, suck at getting clients, fail to deliver high-quality work, and basically punch yourself in the face.

Or maybe you’re overwhelmed because you’re trying to learn pro-writer combos and strikes before you’ve learned the basics.

I know what it’s like to be one of the white-belt freelancers on the mat staring down opponents like Fear, Self-Doubt, Procrastination, and Lack of Direction.

It’s scary. It’s frustrating. And if you don’t do something about it, those bad guys from the Dojo of Doom and Failure will take you down.

But it doesn’t have to be like that. After some training, practice, and a few blows to the head, I learned five moves freelancers can use to beat fear and doubt.

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Contest: Let’s Make a Writer’s Gratitude List

Contest: Make a Writer's Gratitude List. Makealivingwriting.com

Years ago, when I was finding it hard to get out of bed, much less write, I started making a daily gratitude list. To celebrate Thanksgiving, I’d like to collaborate with you today and make a writer’s ultimate gratitude list. You game?

If you haven’t done this before, writing a gratitude list is a great way to start the day, or to end it. Our human brains are programmed to focus on the negative. We needed to remember where the saber-toothed tigers were, so we’d avoid that valley.

In our modern lives full of negative news headlines and fears for the future, dwelling on the bad stuff can really sap your writing creativity. Focusing on the positive is a powerful tool to remind us of the simple joys of being alive.

Ready to join in?

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How to Ruin Your Freelance Writing Career

Afraid you'll ruin your writing career? Makealivingwriting.com

If you’re feeling stuck, thinking, “Maybe I’ll screw this up and ruin my writing career,” read this post from a couple of years ago. Face your fears, learn from your mistakes, and keep going. –Carol

When I asked readers recently what’s holding you back from breaking in and earning big as a freelance writer, I got many different answers. But one I heard a lot:

Fear.

Melissa: “I am terrified. Of succeeding, of failing, of just simply doing!”

Kifayat: “Fear of getting things wrong and also selling myself short.”

Cindy: “I fear looking like a fool.”

DeAnn: “I just don’t want to start out on the wrong foot and jeopardize my career before it really gets going.”

Jane: “The idea of succeeding (or even testing myself) too quickly just scares the living hell out of me. Without faithful cheerleaders freelancing success is just too scary (because the bigger success the bigger the failure that might follow).”

To sum up: Many of you are afraid of doing something so awful that it will ruin your freelance writing career.

So today, we will confront these fears. I’m going to tell you something shattering:

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Stop Making Excuses: One Writer’s Doubt-Slaying Strategies for Freelance Success

Slay your doubts for freelance success. Makealivingwriting.com

What’s holding you back from freelance success?

For a lot of writers, it’s fear of failure, doubt, or that voice inside your head that tries to convince you’ll never be good enough.

Believe me. I know what it’s like to keep second-guessing yourself, steer clear of networking and marketing, and get stuck feeling like every other writer is killing it but you.

I wasn’t always a freelance writer. In fact, I was TV news reporter and producer, teacher, and human resources trainer, before I made the leap to full-time freelancing.

Even though I had plenty of career experience, I had my doubts about freelance success.

But I knew I had to slay those dragons and stop making excuses.

It didn’t happen overnight. But I have found ways to overcome my doubts and fears, move up and earn more. And so can you.

Here are a few ways I deal with the doubts that trip me up the most:

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‘I Want to Quit My Job and Freelance’ — How to Know It’s Time

'I want to quite my job and freelance' Is it time?. Makealivingwriting.com

I hear this a lot, from aspiring freelance writers: “I want to quit my job. I’ve always wanted to earn a living from my writing. But…I’m scared.”

Indeed. We all are. How do you know when it’s your moment to quit working for the Man and make the leap into freelance writing?

After a decade coaching writers in making this transition, I’ve discovered there are common ‘tells’ that show writers the time has come to head for the door and launch their freelance career.

If you’ve been wondering how you’ll know it’s time to act on your urge to quit, take a look at my list of common traits of writers who have reached their freelance moment:

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The Credentials You Need to Be a Freelance Writer

Freelance writer credentials that matter most. Makealivingwriting.com

Note: Think you’re missing the credentials or qualifications to be a successful freelance writer? I wrote this post five years ago, and I still see a lot of writers struggle with this. The credentials that really matter have nothing to do with writing, and everything to do with mindset. Enjoy!  –Carol.

If I’ve learned one thing mentoring freelance writers, it’s this: Writers are hung up on qualifications.

I wish I had a dime for every time a freelance writer told me:

“I’ve always wanted to pursue a career as a freelance writer, but given that I lack a journalism degree, I felt unqualified.”

To which I can only say: Hey. Me too. Both on the no-degree front (I’m a college dropout with a degree in nothing), and the feeling inadequate thing, too.

Except I just plunged in and started writing anyway.

Do you think lack of qualifications or credentials are holding your back from being a successful freelance writer? Are you thinking about going back to school, taking another course, or talking yourself out of pitching higher-paying clients because you don’t have an impressive resume?

Everyone should be a life-long learner. But you don’t need a degree or credentials to be a successful freelance writer. Here’s what you really need:

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