Freelancing is hard. Yes, freedom is wonderful, but we can’t ignore the fact that being your own boss, making decisions on your own, and taking full responsibility for the balance in your bank account at the end of the month comes with it’s own stresses. Often a lot of them.
Freelancing is also lonely. Being able to work from anywhere with only a laptop, is something most people only dream of. And we may not realize until we’ve been doing it for a while, that we actually enjoyed those pointless chitchats with co-workers by the coffee machine. Working from home can make you feel isolated.
Usually your friends & family don’t quite understand your business, and as much as they may try to be supportive, they often can’t give you the advice or motivation you need in everyday business.
So what to do about it?
Find an accountability partner or two
You may have heard me talk about mine as I have mentioned them here and there on the blog (or been featured on the Freelancers Spotlight). My business has honestly changed since I’ve had them and I’m so grateful for them everyday.
Early in my business development I was encouraged during a business class to get an accountability partner. I simply connected with another woman in the group, and we checked in with each other from time to time. In the beginning we setup a call each week to talk about our goals for the week and what we had accomplished the week before.
It’s amazing how much more motivating it can be to get work done and to keep working toward bigger goals when you know someone will be following up with you.
Create or join a mastermind group
A fellow freelancer I had met as part of a online biz course, asked in a Facebook group if anyone would like to join her in forming a mastermind. I jumped on the opportunity. It started with us meeting on Skype once a month. There are 5 us, the perfect small group where we all get to talk about our ups and downs, get feedback on our current ideas, and brainstorm together. We have now setup a Facebook group where we interact daily. We post our current struggles, proofread each others program copy, and most of all support each other through sharing and spreading each other’s work. We’ll tell each other when ideas suck, we share articles, books & cool stuff online and give each other boosts of confidence when we need it.
Although I haven’t met these ladies yet in person (we all live in different countries), they have become best friends in business.
I can’t recommend having a mastermind group or accountability partner enough. But when you’re new to business, it’s hard to imagine where to find someone to join you and a little nerve-wracking to put yourself out there.
The thing to remember is that most freelancers or entrepreneurs are in the same place as you. Feeling lonely working for themselves, needing someone to brainstorm ideas with, and being supported on a daily basis. It’s just a matter of connecting with others and making it known that you are looking to put something more formal together. You don’t have to be in the same business or at the exact same stage of your journey.
Start out by deciding what you would like in a mastermind group. Do you want to meet weekly or monthly? Do you want to have specific topics each month or just talk about each other’s current goals and successes?
I recommend making it as simple as possible in the beginning and see where it goes from there. My group for example met once a month, then realized we loved it so much, we wanted a place to interact daily (so we made a Facebook group). We still have our calls- to see each other face to face in a more organized fashion (which we all look forward to), but it’s nice to be able to ask for feedback immediately.
Set some primary goals just to keep it organized in the beginning but let it grow organically from there.
Here are 5 places to find a mastermind group or accountability partner:
If you have already joined a Facebook group or two, simply post that you are looking for others interested in joining a group. Haven’t joined any groups yet? Get on it! You can find them simply by searching in Facebook groups for terms like entrepreneur, freelancing, freelancers, etc. If they appear to just be spamming or self-promoting groups, there are some other places to look as well.
Many freelancers have setup their own groups and use it for an optin on their website. Take a look at some of your favorite websites and blogs and see if they have something that says “Join Our Community”.
If you resonate with the person’s website or message, you will likely resonate with the other people that are part of their group, making it a perfect place to find mastermind buddies.
Connect with others on Twitter and reach out to some asking if they are interested in joining a mastermind group. Or simply post to your twitter (or your facebook too) saying that you are on the lookout and anyone interested can contact you. Don’t have many connections? Use a website like FollowerWonk to search for people based on the words in their bio. This is great for connecting in general but will also help you find people to mastermind with.
On your website
Write a blog post explaining why and how you’d like to set up a mastermind and tell people to contact you if they are interested. Or even easier, put up a little graphic in your sidebar as a sort of advertisement for your mastermind.
Straight-up ask people
Whether on social media, in forums, in groups, by email or in person, there is no harm in simply asking people if they are interested in being part of a mastermind or accountability group.
Setting up your own mastermind with a group of friends/colleagues is a great start, but joining paid masterminds can give you a next level of support an accountability. The reality is, people are simply more committed to success when they’ve got some money on the line. This also usually gives you access to the leader/coach who may be a few steps ahead of you and can guide you further than your peer-group.
Look at the coaches and communities you follow and see if they offer a mastermind. From experience, you’ll want to make sure you get 1-1 time with the leader, as that’s where the most progress can come.
Have you seen my FTF Accelerate Mastermind? Might be worth a look 🙂 Check it out here.
Look into some of the places listed above and put yourself out there. You won’t regret it, I promise!
Leave a comment and let me know if you have a mastermind group and why you love it (to motivate others to get one too) and if not, let my other readers know if you are looking for one!