Basic tools, strategies, principles for a business and/or freelance life. Motivation and productivity advice. Includes planning, goal-setting.


Interesting Facts

Ups, Downs, Pitfalls

By Pam Wilson from BIG Brand System (article here). Expect these and prepare:

  • Economic ups and downs
  • Income that disappears (e.g. losing client, dropping demand)
  • Your product becomes a hit
  • Potential projects fall through
  • Sales fall flat: update your product? Replace it?
  • New partners out of nowhere
  • Discouragement
  • Small victories - celebrate them!
  • Business will shape shift (guaranteed!)

Principles, Motivation

  • Be confident in your manner and message
    • Don't say "I hope". Say "I will"!
    • Client will trust you more
  • Do not give up.
  • Don't change your mind! Find a direction, then stick with it
  • Dream big: get "cash-cow" clients that pay regularly. Be willing to turn down bad ones!
  • Be different. (e.g. only one with an audio guide, personal e-mail, respond). Examples from Pat Flynn:
    • I never hide anything
    • I disclose my income sources
    • My own blog theme
    • Blog about my personal life (I have a face and voice)
    • My blog is ad-free
  • Own a well-designed web site
  • Build a mailing list (opt-in, autoresponder: e.g. 10-part series)
  • Build a rep for impeccable value

What Clients Want!

From Make A Living Writing

  • Convenience
    • Minimize their workload
    • Provide a clear plan
    • Be self-sufficient and show it
  • Competence
    • Explain how your background helps
    • Display your knowledge
  • Confidence
    • Teach clients about what they need
    • Outline your approach
    • They will trust your judgement


  • Focus: don't try to do everything you want to do. (Rob Hatch, newsletter from Jul 17, 2014)
    • Take a clear and determined action toward a goal
    • Commit to one thing at a time
  • From Pat Flynn: instead of daily to-do lists, make project-specific to-do lists!
    • Daily to-do lists usually get thwarted by urgent stuff
  • Discipline: e.g. read one book a week, write one article.
    • Make a strict daily schedule
    • How many hrs for marketing, content, interaction etc.
  • Sustainability: set a pace and keep it up

Am I on the Right Track?

Check my...

  • Values: beliefs, personal qualities
  • Money: is it more each year?
  • Freedom: do you have the freedom you want?
  • Achievements / personal progress: am I enjoying the journey? Satisfied when overcoming obstacles?
  • Stats and sales: visitors, commenters, shares
  • Social status: presence on social media necessary for references, guest posts, links, exposure. Do people reference me?

Long-Term Visions/Plans

(from Pam Wilson's e-mail re. "true calling")

  • Starting out: In the early days of your business, it’s tough to know your true calling. You should have a vision, and make an educated guess. You’ll discover by taking action.
  • 1-5 years: After you’ve implemented some of your ideas, your true calling becomes clearer. Why? Because at the same time you’re taking action, you’re listening, responding and adapting to feedback.
  • 5+ years: At this point in your business, your true calling is very clear. Just be prepared, because it may change over time! Fortunately at this point you’ve cultivated the skills of acting, listening, and responding, so modifying your true calling should feel like second nature.

Going International

Article on Make a Living Writing

  • Pitch global trade shows
  • Act as a local contact (correspondent)
    • For press kits, social media campaigns, marketing materials
  • Be a cultural consultant for companies moving to town