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taken on new client

(9 Posts)
freelancenewbie Wed 05-Mar-14 10:46:13

Right, so I totally didn't listen to my own advice (see previous thread about NY resolutions for business owners - in which I confirmed that I would not be looking for new clients - instead, just focus on the one I had) - I've gone and got a new client. What is wrong with me? Why can't I ever just stick to what I've decided. I'm busy enough as it is (one demanding client & 2 pre-schoolers) - why do I always test my boundaries and stress myself out. Background: Great potential new client opening - I decided to go for it. Didn't really think I'd ever hear from them. 5 days later, terms are signed and we're good to go. It all happened very fast. It will probably result in me requiring more childcare. Have I done the right thing? Realistically, I will have great quality time with my DC on Monday and Friday mornings and weekends. And that's it. I will need the rest of the time to complete client work. Have I tipped the balance? Have I made a mistake? I was intending to keep with my one client and expand once DC are at school (3 year old and 20 month old). But I'm thinking if a great opportunity comes your way, you have to take it - right? Any general musings would be appreciated. (I would obviously have more time if I stopped going on Mumsnet but for me, it's part and parcel of being freelance - it's my support network!). Thanks. p.s. at what stage do you think I become a fully fledged freelancer rather than a 'freelancenewbie'? Ha!

PrincessScrumpy Wed 05-Mar-14 17:03:34

I've just done similar. I have a 6 yo and two 2 yo twins. They start preschool in September so should really have waited until then but the opportunity is now and I think I'll enjoy it. You can try it and see how you feel. Maybe re assess in 3 months? Good luck

freelancenewbie Wed 05-Mar-14 17:37:09

Thanks Princess - good luck with yours too. Crikey you will be busy with 2yo twins until September - or you using other childcare until then? I'm going to trial my set up with combination of two clients, childminder & preschool until August, give myself 6 months & then re-assess for September! Crikey, so busy now!

MrsMargoLeadbetter Thu 06-Mar-14 16:22:14

Hello freelance <waves>

I think part of the trouble (which a lot of us suffer from based on posts on here) is imposter syndrome. It sounds like you didn't think you'd get it....and then you did. A bit like how you thought you wouldn't be able to double your fees and then you did!

You are clearly great at doing what you do and also selling yourself. It seem the thing that is out of line is your view of yourself/confidence. Some of this is probably down to the fact you are new to freelancing, it takes time to get used to it and to build up experience of doing things in a freelance way and gaining confidence that it will all be ok. But it could be that you need to adjust your thinking about yourself too - sorry if I am way off there.

Have you read Lean In ? By the female COO of Facebook. It is full of examples of women who are too apologetic, don't push themselves forward etc. I keep thinking "Oh God I do that".

If you don't want to read the book, watch her TED Talk for free!

It does focus on senior employed women to some extent (but we shouldn't forget that we are the CEOs of our businesses, or rather "A freelancer" as I rather self-deprecatingly say which I need to stop!) but the general message that women need to be more confident & fake it until we make it is universal. The book is REALLY challenging my thinking - I think it could be life changing!

I do also think that in freelancing more than employed life there is a feeling of "the time is now" when somebody approaches, so I have lots of empathy with your view there.

I also personally feel that these are my best years (touch wood) and that I need to work now whilst I can etc. I am not aware that of any illnesses but I want to make the best of the best of me etc. That isn't to say that I won't still be working at 70 etc, but I imagine one will need to slow down a little etc.

Only you know how many hours you need to spend with your DC. As Princess says, why not try it? I know you don't want to let the cliet down further down the line, but that is part of the deal of them using a freelancer and a number of things could come up that changes your situation. See if it suits you and the DC and if it doesn't change - that is one of the benefits of our life smile.

I have also found this MN thread about high earning mothers interesting and inspiring.

Mostly they cannot work part-time as their work responsibilities won't allow that. So they have to put their children in childcare full-time and most seem comfortable with that. Not saying that you should feel like that or that your DC should go into childcare more, but I just found it refreshing to see working viewed in such a positive way.

Anyway, I think that is enough from me! I hope you find peace with your decision, enough to try it anyway. And congrats! I do think you have graduated from freelancenewbie - do let me know your name change though, I have enjoyed our chats!

whatdoesittake48 Thu 06-Mar-14 17:14:03

Rather than leaning In i believe in Jumping in - men do this stuff all the time - put their work ahead of their kids - and no one accuses them of anything.

children appreciate Mums who are proud of themselves and committed to them when they can be. Plus you need to do something for yourself.

Well done by the way.

CommsWhizz Mon 10-Mar-14 14:18:08

Hey Newbie,

Haven't we recently had this conversation on my very similar post? The complexities of being a working parent and the captain of your own ship, eh?

For what it's worth, I think you've done the right thing. If it's too much and it's making you unhappy, you can take steps to change things but give it a go. Remember I did the same, put feelers out thinking 'I could do that' and before I knew it, the work was mine and then in crept the dread and the worry and the parental guilt and imposter syndrome. I gave myself a dreadful time about it and while it's manic at the moment, it's also been great as a confidence boost and, of course, a boost to the bank balance.

Like oh-so-wise Margo says, now is the time to do this. We're all guilty of selling ourselves short, and I think if the opportunity is there, and you want to do it, why not? You've still got some great quality time with the children, and the extra childcare will free up your time to really devote yourself to growing your business and taking those next steps. Be proud of yourself and don't let the 'but I should be with my babies 24/7' guilt creep in. Once I'd made the decision about what to do, I could focus on the positives and it's transformed the way I work, how I value my own abilities and how I feel.

Way to go girlie, now just ditch the guilt and embrace your success. And remember, there are very few decisions in life that can't be revisited.

CW x

WilsonFrickett Mon 10-Mar-14 22:08:00

The first couple of projects with a new client are excruciating (I should know, in all seriousness I phoned someone I sub-contract for and asked her if she thought I was the right person for a job today!) and all-consuming, but eventually (with the right boundary setting from you) you will be able to do it in your sleep/while bouncing a baby/at soft play.

If it doesn't work out, back out - nothing is irreversible in this game.

OddFodd Mon 10-Mar-14 22:13:30

I've often taken on more than I can chew - told clients breezily that of course I can be in Geneva at 10am on Monday when I have no idea of how I'll sort out childcare but I've always managed to cobble something together and fly by the seat of my pants.

Good for you smile

freelancenewbie Mon 10-Mar-14 22:19:21

Thanks everyone - some great thoughts/advice - will read through properly tomorrow.

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