Wondering how to support freelancers in your life? It’s easier than you think. You can support us crazy people in many ways. Here are just a few ways:
1. Ask us about our work & business
Thank you. Seriously. You will think I may not want this because when you ask I will probably have a very short answer. My answer will probably consist of some combination of “crazy” or “busy” and I will smile. Do not be thrown by my unusual brevity. I’m just kind of self-conscious of talking too much about my work and, since it is something that makes up a lot of my life, I try to not let it overly invade my personal life. That smile—that’s the important part. That smile is because you just validated me and treated my work like the “real job” it is. Thank you.
2. …just try & watch your nervous/surprised/concerned/worried tone
I know that if you’re asking me, you’re also worried about me. You care about me, probably a whole lot. Thank you. I just want to promise you right now that you don’t need to worry. I need no additional help with worrying. We freelancers have lots of worry to go around. We have lots of moments of doubt. We struggle with imposter syndrome. We are wary of judgement by those who have more “normal” 9-5 jobs. We are trying to blaze our own path. We know that is crazy—trust me—we probably shed maybe fearful tears over making this decision before we make it. Yes, I will be careful. Yes, I do have all those worries too. Yes, I’m still in business.
3. Grab coffee with us
Working alone can be… you guessed it: lonely. It’s not so bad, but I know for extroverts like me, it can get a little tough sometimes. Having someone who is willing to just get us out of the house for a break is so refreshing. It’s nice to see people and take a breather. I also severely appreciate the people who are willing to spend time with me while I work. I miss the office environment sometimes. You don’t know how nice it is to have someone to talk to while you work until you no longer have it. And sometimes it is just nice to have someone there, even if we aren’t saying anything at all. When I trained for a marathon several years ago, one of my close friends was willing to bike with me while I did a 21 mile training run. She wasn’t able to run that far and we didn’t talk all that much, but she was beside me as I worked to achieve my goal. Taking the time to be with me while I work is just as touching to me.
4. Share & interact with our social media
I know that doesn’t seem like a big deal, but you help our businesses tremendously when you like, comment, and share our social media posts. A simple click by you gets our work and name out and potentially get us work. EVERY SINGLE CLICK means the world to me. Really.
5. Refer us
I know it is weird to feel like you’re selling something to someone—trust me, I have to do it everyday. But referrals are the BEST way for us to get business. You’ve personally endorsed us. That’s something that we don’t take lightly at all. We know that means that you just stuck your neck out for us. Endorsing something means risking your reputation. Your word is important. We promise to rise to the occasion and deliver. You just helped me continue my livelihood. HUGE thank you.
6. Hire us
I LOVE doing good work for people, organizations, and businesses I have a relationship with. You are giving us the gift of the ability to work with you and help us provide for ourselves and our families. You are also giving us the opportunity to make you look as awesome as your are. THANK YOU.
So many of my dear friends and family have already done all of the above. Thank you. A thousand times thank you. I’m still going because of you. I know I’ll never be able to totally repay you, but please let me know how I can support you too, so I can try and return the favor.