Our ability to get freelance and consulting assignments is tied much more closely to the ups and downs of our own businesses than to the national economy.
Still, if you read a lot of online advice about how to freelance or consult, you’ll see that the gurus are obsessed with this Great Recession.
Sure, they say it doesn’t bother them. They’re so above it all. They are so steeped in affirmations and visualizations, so seasoned in their work, in so tight with repeat clients, with a backlog of customers begging for spots towards the top third of their waiting lists.
But the fundamental reason they sail through choppy seas that intimidate mere mortals? It’s because they do marketing, they tell us.
OK, sometimes they suffer brief twinges to the gut. And what do they do about it? Again, more marketing.
Marketing is always the answer
Well duh. Of course marketing is the answer to an economic downturn. That’s because marketing is always the way to get more work.
Fortunately, those of us prone to worry can justify our fears in any economic environment. If you’re prone to worry (I’ll admit it, like most people, I am), there is always something to worry about.
What about the good times?
Dow soaring? Your brother buys a flashy BMW? Your neighbor buys a boat he’ll only use one weekend a year because he’s away on so many vacations? Yes, it will happen some day. (I’m not predicting the date.)
But even good times do not guarantee that our own freelancing plates will be full
To tweak an old adage to fit freelancing, it’s a recession when my neighbor has no assignments and a depression when I’m idle. In other words, our own experience is far more relevant to us than some macro data.
This means we must manage our thoughts not only when we hear dire economic reports but even when the big picture is just fine. Just say “no” to round-the-clock doubts. And oh yeah, do some more marketing.