At the start of lock-down, within the first week in fact, I lost my regular freelance writing work. It was a knock. I wallowed, I panicked, I raged and then I accepted it. Yes, it was a problem, but as I always do, I looked for positives and it did free me up to be able to home school the kids and spend time with them.
Since then, I have been looking for freelance work and I’ve applied for quite a few contracts. Of course, these are few and far between and when they do pop up, there are plenty of applicants for every position. So no luck.
I have taken this time to make the most of it with the kids and focus on them and myself. After those initial few weeks, I have stopped beating myself up about it and put it to one side. We’re in the midst of a pandemic, panicking about this isn’t going to help me or change anything. I have been able to apply through the government’s self employed scheme and I know that there are many self employed people without a few years accounts to be able to do this so I am fully aware that I am fortunate to be able to do this. It has bought us some time, some breathing space.
It has given me time to think. Time to evaluate and shape ideas.
This is where I am at today. And the reason that I am writing this post is as something of a goal setting piece and a way to hold myself accountable. I think that if I tell all of you what I’d like to do, I will feel in some way beholden to you to deliver it. I can come back to this post on the tougher days and remember the determination and optimism with which I wrote it. I can feed off that and set off again on the right path, keen to get there once more. I also know that I am lucky to have so many of you out there supporting me and I know that you will be my cheerleaders on this one. I thank you for that now and in advance for the challenges ahead.
I have decided, for a set period of time, not to pursue any freelance writing work. I have decided that I want all of my income and business to rely on my own work, my own efforts. I do not want to be at the whim of other companies and contracts again, certainly not in these strange times when anything can give at any moment.
I know, I know, it’s all very well deciding that this is what I want, but how?
Well, that all lives right here, doesn’t it? This here blog.
I plan to grow. I have happily bobbed along existing in this space for some time now and now it feels like the right time to stretch and challenge myself. I want to push outside of my comfort zone and try new things. I want to wake up bursting with ideas again. I want to get excited about sharing my latest content with you all. I want to have fun with this, but I also want to push myself and work hard.
These are a few of the areas that I intend to develop and I would love for you to hold me to these if you don’t see anything forthcoming any time soon!
I want to launch digital products.
I have, in the midst of lock-down, managed to get my shop up and running. This has been a goal for some time, so now I want to add new product lines and designs regularly and develop this area.
I want to grow the wonderful #bringbackpaper community, groups and activities. Yes, there will be more papery stuff here!
I want to ensure that this blog shares those things that I am passionate about and those things that you want to learn more about.
I want to develop affiliate income streams.
And I want to triple my blog traffic. Yes, triple it. It’s a lofty goal, but it’s the one that I want to reach.
Along with a raft of behind the scenes stuff that I won’t bore you with, I will be creating more content, with more purpose, and doing all that I can to keep you coming back for more and attracting new folks to this space.
In a nutshell, I want this blog and a variety of offshoots to it, to be all that I work on and I want to increase my income through doing so, without the need to take on long term freelance contracts. Of course, I have longed earned my income directly from this blog too, but again, I want to be in control of that income coming in consistently through the areas I’ve listed above, rather than relying too much on collaborations coming my way.
This isn’t going to be easy. I know that.
You know that phrase, ‘if you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you’ve always got?’, it will be etched on my brain! I will live and breathe that one. Because I have been blogging now for seven years, and whilst I am incredibly proud of all that I have achieved in that time, I now need to push myself to explore new areas, to try new things and to change up the way that I do things.
I am excited. I am nervous. I feel a bit sick! But most of all, I am excited.
I thrive on new. I am at my best when I have a challenge or a project on the go and this one should keep me super busy.
I have a little over three more weeks of the summer holidays left. I want to make the most of the time with the kids, and then I plan to start getting some of these new plans and actions in place. Ideas are formulating, my mind is whizzing and notebooks are filling up!
What do you think? Have I lost my mind?! Any tips and ideas gratefully received right about now…