Only the work doesn’t come pouring in and it can all feel a little odd now that you’re working from the back bedroom with the shortest commute of your working life. What can you do ease the process of adjusting to working for yourself? Here are 5 tips to make sure you keep sane as you go about changing your life.
Find an Accountability Buddy or a Mastermind Group
When we work for an employer we are accountable for the work we do, the targets we work towards, the projects we deliver on. That all changes when we work for ourselves. We only have ourselves and our clients to be accountable to – but I’ve noticed something strange happen. Many people who work for themselves forget that they are accountable to their clients. They procrastinate, putting things off, distracted by social media and other ‘more interesting’ things. This is where your accountability buddy comes in - or better still a Mastermind Group that supports you, encourages you, and holds you accountable for your delivery goals.
Create Daily and Weekly Routines
It’s well documented that a lack of routine can lead to stress and in extreme cases depression for those who progress onto working for themselves. Avoid having this happening to you - make sure that you create routines for yourself. And the first of these is to get dressed. Decide on your work uniform and make sure you get dressed every work day. Also, decide on your work hours and stick to them as much as possible, making time for family and friends.
You’re in danger of suffering from ‘home-office fever’ also known as cabin fever when you work for yourself until you get enough work that you are going to work on projects and photographing clients. As you build the business make sure you get yourself out of the house – even if it’s just to do some shopping. You need to encounter people in the rest of the world so that you don’t go stir crazy.
Work ON the Business
As a photographer you will inevitably work in your business – and it’s easy to make that at the expense of working ON the business. Make sure that you do your accounts, that you market your business even when you’re busy, that you ensure you don’t over-trade by taking on too much work. Keep focused on what you need to do as the manager and entrepreneur of your business just as much as the technician, the photographer. Being in business is so much more than being a photographer, and it helps to be passionate about business as well as photography.
The Money In Your Bank Account Is Not Yours
Survival of your business relies on remembering this one thing – the money that comes into your business belongs to your business. It is not yours. People who spend the money in their business bank account as if it’s their own end up with significant cash flow issues. And that’s what leads to disaster for most new businesses.
There's a lot more than this to do to ensure your transition is successful - but at least keeping your eyes on these 5 steps will ensure a greater chance at being successful. Now, go on, get working on your business, and become a success!