Sapnin’ gang? I have been in a bit of a creative slump this week and as much as I am a firm believer that good quality work shouldn’t be forced, I have come to realise that I can’t always afford to be in one.
My ability to write engaging material is often determined by my mood which in terms of security, is something that I often find frightening.
In an attempt to be productive, I have been dragging my arse to the library as much as possible and still can’t seem to generate work that I am happy with. Having said that, it has got me thinking.
On the surface, going solo, working for yourself, going it alone, however you want to put it, seems to be something that can often be quite appealing.
Weirdly, the other day right? I was asked to have a chat with someone’s daughter about how to become a writer. At this stage, I need to point out that I by no means feel as though as I am successful in my field. The best way to describe my current situation is that I’m constantly in a state of “not quite there but working on it” Do you know what I mean?
Anyway, the first thing that came into my head when I was asked to speak to the poor kid was “Prepare to be in a constant state of thinking ‘shit, shit, shit’”. Imagine being chased by a grizzly bear and clenching your bum cheeks whilst running because he is so close to eating your sorry arse. Yea, that’s pretty much what it sometimes feels like.
For some reason however (and without meaning to toot my own horn or whatever the saying is) people seem to find what I do way more impressive than It actually is. I’ve been thinking of writing a book entitled “How to feel like a Bit of a Fraud Whilst Managing to Sound Relatively Impressive.” That’s got quite a nice ring to it actually.
My point is this. I have learnt a lot in the past few years (I’m hella wise mate) and If It helps anyone who is deciding whether or not to go it alone, then I have put that knowledge to pretty good use as far as I’m concerned.
Although I’m specifically relating this to writing, all of these points can be transferred across the board and are definitely things to consider if you’re wanting to go solo. It is worth asking yourself if the positives out way the negatives.
This is really trivial but let me tell you, boy does it feel good to be in your comfiest clothes with a face mask on and still manage to be somewhat productive.
Admittedly, this is specifically aimed at those of you who want to work from home. You can wake up at 8:30 and be ready to rumble at 9 (Did I really just say “ready to rumble”? #AntandDec)
You Learn The Value of Money.
This one’s a biggie. I have really learnt the value of money because I know how much work has to go in to earning £1. You will often find yourself producing work for others that you will gain very little from financially (if anything at all) But you have to be prepared, especially at the beginning of your journey, to do a lot for very little. The results end up being more positive than you think.
Full Creative Control.
It’s yours. No more asking for permission to do stuff. You get so much freedom from working for yourself. You’re the boss. You set your own goals and you decide how much effort you are going to put into achieving them.
For me, spontaneity is a big part of creating good work. We get so caught up on the idea that we need to create an end product (whatever that may be) that we often forget to “play”. I mean, I fall into that trap often but luckily, working solo allows me to be flexible enough to give myself the time I need to get back on track.
The only person that needs to approve your holiday is you. Imagine that. Bliss.
It Can Be Hard to Switch Off.
I am regularly up at midnight because I have been woken up by an idea and feel as though I need to get the ball rolling as soon as possible. Not knowing when to switch off becomes a regular part of everyday life and it can be challenging to define where work ends and home life begins. I often feel as though I work 24/7.
Prepare To Be Lonely.
A lot. I completely get why working for yourself is something that people find appealing but the harsh reality is, I can be quite isolating. There’s no team around you so prepare to be your own motivation. Also no work do’s, no Christmas parties and yes, I know there are other parties to go to and I know work parties include having to have boring chit chat with people that you can’t stand but sometimes I miss that, damn it.
You know that pair of shoes you have been wanting that cost way more than you earn? Yea forget about them for now mate. Especially seeing as though work could dry up/fall down the pan at any given moment.
Having said all of this, If you really believe in what you do you shouldn’t let this hinder your progression. It’s normal to hit hard times. It’s a part of the journey. A lot of people don’t make it past the initial stages of struggle but if you do, that is often when you’ll reap the most rewards.
Hope you’re all having a lovely day.