How to start working for yourself

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    Maia Duerr

    Hi, I’m curious to hear from people who have started on the path of self-employment. I’ve had my own business for the past five years now, and wow I’ve learned a lot! I’m curious what other people who also work for themselves have found to be helpful in keeping them going when times get tough, when freelance work is in the ‘famine’ mode, and other tips.
    Feel free to leave your comments or questions here!

    Sheila McCann

    Hi Maia,

    I’m just starting out so looking to hear what tips are posted here.  Congrats on your 5 years : )





    Maia Duerr

    Hi Sheila,

    Wonderful that you are starting down this road! Would you like to tell us a little bit about your business, or what you envision it will be?


    Sheila McCann

    Hi Maia,

    Sure. Thanks for asking.

    It’s   rainbowframework.com  The rainbow framework is a color coded visual representation of the concrete and abstract parts of life.  It gives you an organized view of life and helps you expand your self expression by showing you where you might be disconnected or blocked.  Some of the main themes are self expression, creativity, blocks, finding your purpose, spirituality, meditation, evolution of consciousness etc.

    I’ve gotten the site moving along and I’m now putting together the workshops – I want these to focus on self expression, creativity and be a fun time.  It’s definitely a lot to juggle and takes time to build a presence.

    What is your business and what is the # one piece of advise you would give someone starting out?


    Maia Duerr

    Hey Sheila,

    Well, we’ve got a lot in common! I have a website called The Liberated Life Project which is similar to the spirit and vision of Rainbow Framework (I took a look at your site, fun!). I also have a consulting/coaching practice, Five Directions — I support small nonprofits and business owners to build more engaged communities. I do this through supporting them in marketing, communications, fundraising, and other ways.

    The number one piece of advice for someone starting out? Not sure I can narrow it down to just one, but how about the top three?!

    * Educate yourself by learning from people who share the same business values as you and have been successful in what they do (in my case, a couple of mentors/exemplars have been Pamela Slim and Chris Guillebeau)

    * Build relationships with people who can help you, and help them in return

    * Persistence! Be ready to stay in it for the long haul, and know that ups and downs are a natural part of being an entrepreneur

    I hope others chime in here with their experiences and advice… I love connecting with people who are expressing their creativity through a business.

    • This reply was modified 11 years, 1 month ago by Maia Duerr.
    Sheila McCann

    Hey Zenyu,

    Thanks so much for the great advice. I’ve been doing a lot of research and taking webinars…lots of mentors in this field. I think building relationships is key and I couldn’t agree more about persistence. This is a roller coaster ride on so many levels and there is no clear path for the tracks.

    I find it fascinating that you are an ordained Buddhist chaplain. Although I’m not a practicing Buddhist, I’ve been very interested in Buddhism for some time. I love your site…lots of great themes and yes we/our sites have a lot in common. I subscribed and I’m looking forward to your writings.


    I’m working for myself right now, and it’s so difficult! I’m fresh out of college, so I figured now is the perfect time to give a crack at it.

    I’m a Freelance Web & Graphic Designer, which I absolutely love, but finding clients is very difficult. I don’t mind being by myself as I am a very independent person, but having to find the work on your own rather than somebody hand you the work is very challenging!

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