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If you could fill up your work days with anything, what would it be? What is something you’d love people to pay you for? It doesn’t matter whether you’re a freelancer or if you have a job, you should always work on something you’d one day love to do professionally.
For freelancers, it’s extremely important to always work on a little side project to sharpen your profile and to build a portfolio of work you want others to associate you with. For people who work full-time, it sort of goes by the same rule: if you ever want to apply for a new job, it will be much easier for you to get into something that you’ve been practicing on the side for a while.
New work always comes because of your previous work, so it’s important to have done the work you care about. Some people might argue that they don’t have the time to do the work they would like to be doing because it doesn’t pay, but let me tell you, that’s not necessarily true. You can always start a Kickstarter project such as I’ve done, Volker and Daniel have done, or Harald has done (several times) to launch a freelance business.
One of the questions I like to ask people is who they would like to work for or who you’d like to have as your client. If you have more than just one idea for a side project that you’d like to realise in the near future, it might be best to pick the one that’s the most relevant to your “target.”
You should always do something just for the sake of keeping your excitement high. Just because.. after publishing This Year Will Be Different, a lot has changed for me since now, the majority of my new work comes to me because of this one reference. And I really believe that anyone can do that, even though sometimes I don’t even believe I am myself. If you’ve seen this, you know what I mean.
So think, what would you like people to pay you for? Write me back and maybe I can give you some thoughts on how to make that work or even monetize it.
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