If you love to write, and you’d like to make some extra money to help support your family, you’re probably intrigued with the idea of freelance copywriting. You think it could be for you, but you’re not sure how to get started. Or maybe you have started and you’ve worked with a few clients here and there, but you’re struggling with trying to create a consistent income.
If either of those scenarios describes you, then you know exactly what it feels like to be STUCK, and it’s not fun.
There are a couple of things that happen when you find yourself in that situation, and in this article, I’m going to give you some solutions for what to do if you feel stuck and you’re not sure how to get something started with your freelance copywriting business.
First, I’ll break down three common responses freelance copywriting mamas have to getting stuck. I’ll tell you what happens when you try those three responses so you can identify whether you’re in one of these loops.
Then I’ll reveal what causes you to feel stuck. The crazy thing is, it’s not what you might think, and the solution might just surprise you!
Common Response #1: You Freeze
There are three things freelance copywriting mamas commonly do when they feel like they’re not making progress and they’re not sure what to do next. It’s a tough place to be in. If you stay stuck, you won’t move forward and nothing will change. And that’s the first common response to being stuck. You don’t know WHAT to do, and you’re overwhelmed, so you do nothing.
I have to say, out of these three responses, I am probably the most likely to do this one. I don’t like feeling like I don’t know what I’m doing. I’m a recovering perfectionist, so I like to do things that I’m already good at. In the past when I got stuck, I would just back off and go back to something I already knew.
That can work if you have something to go back to … but what if you don’t? That was what happened to me. There came a point in my journey where I couldn’t go back to what I did before I became a copywriter.
I got a phone call out of the blue one day in 2017. During that phone call, I learned that the client who was responsible for 80 percent of the income in the graphic design business my husband and I ran was retiring, effective immediately.
The worst part was that my husband had just quit his job to work with me, and we had just decided to homeschool our kids. There was no going back, but I also didn’t know how to move forward. My only choice was to go forward and look for places where I could find other people I could learn from.
That’s what you’re doing right now. You’re looking for people you can learn from and ask questions of. You want to figure out the right steps forward, and I just want to let you know you’re in the right place.
If you’re a mom who loves to write and you want to find a way to generate a consistent income from anywhere without sacrificing your family or your freedom and flexibility, you’re in the right place. If you want to learn from another mom who’s been there and done that and built a multi-six-figure copywriting business serving clients and can show you the way, step-by-step, then this is the place for you.
You do not have to stay stuck in your current situation feeling like you don’t have any options, because you do. You DO have options! So let’s just let that response go by the wayside right now, okay? We are not going to settle for just staying stuck.
Because here’s what happens if you do nothing. If you never do anything different, you’ll never get a different result. You have to do something different if you don’t want to keep struggling financially or having to leave your kids at daycare to go work a job you don’t love.
Common Response #2: Dive Into Learning Mode
The second common response we have when we feel stuck and we’re not sure what steps to take to get started in the right direction is to dive into learning mode. We join Google Academy and enroll in YouTube University. We start following anyone and everyone we can who we think we could learn from.
We convince ourselves if we just knew more, the way would be clear. We’d suddenly have this epiphany of exactly what to do, and the problem would be solved. If you approach learning as the precursor to taking action and then take action on what you’re learning, that can boost you out of Stucksville.
But many times that’s not what happens. Once you become a student of Google Academy and YouTube University, you’re surrounded by so much information it seems like there’s always something else you need to know before you can do the thing.
Good luck. It’s like racing down a rabbit hole that branches off into a million trails. The information is plentiful, yes, but how do you know what’s trustworthy and proven and what’s not? It’s like flavor-of-the-day on there, and you end up confused and overwhelmed by information overload.
So you keep learning and learning and learning, telling yourself that until you know more you shouldn’t take action. You end up getting sidetracked by the latest shiny objects like courses, trainings and webinars. Before you know it, months have gone by and you know a lot of stuff … but you haven’t really done anything.
Don’t get me wrong. Learning is important. It’s necessary. But it’s not enough on its own. Learning has to be combined with action. Without action, it’s just information, not knowledge. Information alone cannot pay your bills. You have to take action … but sometimes we take action on the wrong things.
Common Response #3: Hyper-Focusing on the Wrong Thing
The third response to being stuck that just plain doesn’t work is hyper-focusing only on your copywriting skills.
This is super easy to fall into. After all, copywriting is the thing you’re building your business around, and you want to be good at it so you can get results for clients because clients are the key to getting paid.
If you start listening to all the learn-how-to-write-copy gurus out there, you’ll end up copying other people’s sales letters and practicing headlines, blog articles and ad copy all day long. That doesn’t leave much time for prospecting for clients, does it?
Is it important to hone your skills? Yes.
Do you want to be good at copywriting? Yes.
But if you want to generate income consistently and land clients day after day, week after week, month after month … you need more than just copywriting skills.
It’s not enough to just be a good writer. If you put all your time and focus on attention into copying people’s sales letters, you’ll end up with really good penmanship, but not a whole lot else. Plus, copying other people’s sales letters as a way to grow your skillset won’t teach you what really works or how to use your critical thinking skills to create results for your own clients and their unique offers.
It seems like a good idea. It seems like it could result in more clients. But focusing only on your copywriting skills will just keep you more stuck. You also need client acquisition skills, lead generation skills and project management skills, just to name a few.
What should you do then if you feel like you’re stuck in your business or stuck at the very beginning with no idea how to start? Well, I’m going to tell you, but you’re going to be like “What? I didn’t see that coming!”
The Solution? Stop and Get C.L.E.A.R.
Here’s the important thing you need to understand. You can’t get unstuck and make progress like you want to if you don’t have any clarity on where you’re going.
When my husband and I were newlyweds there was a huge blizzard right before Christmas. We had just been over at my parent’s house playing games, and the wind started to pick up. We said to ourselves, “We better get home before it’s a white-out.”
My parents only live three miles away, so we didn’t think it was that big of a deal. I mean, we knew where home was, and it wasn’t that far, right? Famous last words.
We did okay on the highway where we could see the plow marks and stay between the lanes. But once we turned off onto our gravel road, things were a different story. The plows had not yet been out, and you couldn’t see a foot in front of you. My husband was driving on the wrong side of the road with his door open so he could see the grass line where the road met the ditch so we didn’t end up in the ditch.
Guess what. We ended up in the ditch. We drove across a driveway, which meant there was no more grass line, and just went straight into the ditch on the other side. We had to call my dad to bring the backhoe to come pull us out, and he led us the rest of the way home. I’ve never been so thankful to be a farmer’s daughter!
The point of the story is, when we couldn’t see and our view was blocked by snow, we didn’t have the clarity to get ourselves home. We could have easily wandered around in the snow for hours or sat there in the ditch and frozen to death.
Now you may not be in danger of freezing to death (I certainly hope that you’re not!) but if you have no clarity on the path in front of you, you could be wandering around for ages and never actually get out of being stuck.
That’s why the best thing you can do when you feel stuck is to stop and get C.L.E.A.R.
“But Christa, I thought you said we shouldn’t just do nothing. I thought you said to take action.”
Hang in there. I’m not contradicting myself. It does no one any good to take aimless action, and stopping and getting clear doesn’t mean stopping everything. You must take a step back so that you can move forward, and you’re going to go through a very specific process to do that and get the result you want.
C.L.E.A.R. is an acronym that stands for five simple steps that will move you out of Stucksville and into action that will work. So let’s break it down.
C is for Calling. Identify why you want to be a freelance copywriter and why appeals to you. Remind yourself why you love to write and what motivates you to keep going. It could be your family, time freedom, or getting to do something you love every day. Your why is your why. There’s no right or wrong answer. The important thing is to fix it in your mind
L is for Limiting Beliefs. Limiting beliefs will stop you in your tracks every time. If you want to be able to move forward, you’ve got to push those babies out of the way and replace your limiting beliefs with truth statements. When you call something out, it loses its power over you and shrinks down to size. Refuse to let lies and limiting beliefs keep you stuck by ditching them now.
E is for Engineer your Business by Design. Now that you’re clear on your calling and have banished your limiting beliefs, you can get down to the nitty-gritty of figuring out what you want your business to look like. This will help you work towards an achievable goal and keep you from floundering. Start creating some guidelines for:
- What you want your working day to look like
- How many hours you’d like to work each day
- What type of services you’d like to offer
- What industries or specialties appeal to you
Do you have to know every single thing about what your future business will look like right this second? Of course not, but it is good to have a goal to shoot for even if it’s just a few steps ahead on your journey.
A is for Avatar. Avatar is just another word for ideal client. Who is the person you want to serve? What problems do they have? What types of businesses are they in? What are they trying right now in order to solve their problems?
When you get really acquainted with your ideal clients, it’s much easier to find them and connect with them. You can get very specific on how you represent yourself. It focuses your communication about what you do, who you serve and what type of results you can get for them.
R is for Rates. What do you want to charge? Trust me, you want to think about this before you go into discovery calls. If you don’t know what you want to charge, that can hold you back and make you feel uncertain. If you’re afraid to quote your rates, it can affect your confidence and how you show up on calls.
Even if you’re not brand new and you’ve been serving clients for a while, getting clear on your rates can help you get unstuck. Many times, not charging enough is part of the problem.
When you get C.L.E.A.R., the way opens up in front of you. You can push past all the junk of your limiting beliefs and dial down on what you want your business to look like, who you want to serve and how to talk to them about what you do. You’ll be able to stop wandering around and have the motivation and direction you need to take action that will move the needle for your business.
If you are feeling stuck, try the C.L.E.A.R. Method. It really will help you shake yourself out of Stuck Zone and take the next steps to the next level.
Hey Look, a Free Gift!
Want some help knowing the next steps to take to grow your freelance copywriting business? I have a free masterclass where I break down the 3-step framework to making money from anywhere as a freelance copywriter. I used this framework to go from zero to $250k in my first 12 months as a full-time copywriter, and I break it all down for you step-by-step. I also reveal the three big mistakes I see freelance copywriting moms make and how to avoid them. Click the link to watch now. https://www.wordymama.com/wmca-free-training.