Yip, it’s that time again… the time of year we sit up and take stock of ourselves, our lives, our wants and our dreams. For many of us, those dreams include taking the plunge and stepping into the unknown world of ‘Self-Employment’
I have been self-employed for most of my working life and although it is a constant ‘kick yourself up the backside and plod on’ kinda venture, it is also HUGELY rewarding. Selling something you have created or seeing the results of your work makes your heart burst with pride and gushiness. Yes, 10 Noddy badges per triumph over here! Being able to fit things in around school plays, sports days, anniversaries & birthdays is a huge bonus too and well worth the work done in the wee small hours of the morning to catchup!
So, I did a little research and have come up with these top 5 tips for those of you who may be considering the road to self-employment, be it an Etsy, Folksy, eBay store or even becoming a professional blogger. (Dream job alert!)
Don’t be afraid to charge what the value of your product or service is worth! So often I see entrepreneurs undercharging for beautiful items or services (particularly social media related!) which I know have probably taken them the best part of a week to complete!
Bailey sums up this (sometimes tricky) issue for crafters in particular here in her article by saying:
“If you want to actually profit from your crafting, you HAVE to charge what your product is worth. It’s going to be higher than Walmart pricing, and that’s okay, because your items are made by hand and that takes time, effort, materials, and more. If the consumer truly appreciates the products that you are selling, they will buy it, regardless of the price. The biggest factor is demonstrating the value to your customers. Once you do that, people will realize that your products are worth their cost, and you will see more sales!”
2. Find a Space
Designate a little corner in your home that is Just Yours. It could be a spare cupboard, a chest of drawers or even a movable caddy like this:
Whatever it is, assign yourself a little space to get creative and help keep yourself organised! If you really want to have a mooch around a heavenly craft space, check out Jaime’s room over at Raising Up Rubies. *Drool warning!* Pure.Happiness.
3. Have a system & a schedule
Organisation in your ‘workplace’ is key here…. you will be the Director, HR Manager, Secretary, Marketing Guru & Creative Genius all wrapped up into one! Implement a system for keeping all of those bits of paper organised, orders in check & dates diarised and you will sleep waaaaayy easier.
I find it all too easy to just pop the laundry on, or stop what I’m working on to vacuum the house because it’s bugging me….
Have.A.Schedule. And stick to it! I found a great article on How to Create a Cleaning schedule that really works over on Organise My House – check it out Here!
4. Surround yourself with things that inspire and motivate you!
Staying motivated is KEY to being successful by working at home. It’s all to easy to sit at your computer / craft table for 6 hours straight without taking a breather. I often get ‘writers block’ and the best way to unleash the words is to go and sit in a coffee shop with a notebook & pen. People-watching creates great stories! So does coffee. Oh coffee how I love thee.
Give yourself a break to go and do something you really enjoy… even if it’s just a brisk walk around the block or a quick swim before you pick up the kids – the perks of working from home is that you are able to schedule time to do these kinda things!
Make it pretty! I have a stationery PROBLEM. I heart pretty stationery… pens, post-its, sticky tape, paper – you name it, I LOVE it! I have loads of the stuff and use it daily – I’m convinced it helps me be more productive. Convinced. 🙂
5. Be Easy on Yourself
Working from home isn’t always plain-sailing, BUT it’s hugely rewarding. Don’t beat yourself up if you didn’t get all 52 things on your To-Do List done today. Becca at My Crazy Good Life has some great advice here…
“Your to-do list will never be done.
Every night, circle the three most important things on your to-do list for the next day.
Get them done.
If you have time, do more. And at the end of your day, turn your computer all the way off and close the door to your office.
There’s always tomorrow.”
Keeping home and work seperate is always going to be the most challenging, and you won’t always get that balance right – don’t beat yourself up & most importantly have fun, network lots, read lots & enjoy every second of being your own Boss!