Monday, January 4, 2010

Clean Slate Monday

It’s the first Monday of the New Year and I feel as I have a clean slate. I know it shouldn’t matter that it’s January, but a fresh start feels good to me and gives me a motivational boost that can’t hurt.

One reason I’m so excited about this year is that I get to apply some solutions to hopefully fix some of the problems I encountered in 2009. I endured a few rough patches in 2009 that resulted in lower income than the previous year. A couple of my steady clients pulled way back on the business they were sending my way. Two just dried up completely.

Last summer I had big plans to send my three older kids to a camp program so that I could really focus on work, but an unexpected change of plans killed that dream. I had a difficult time establishing a consistent working schedule while they were home; and you can imagine how much marketing I was doing…

I also had more clients paying late than ever before – and when I say late I mean four to five months later. To top things off my daughter was unexpectedly hospitalized for one week in October (due to complications with her chronic condition) and one week during December as a result of a stomach virus gone wrong.

When I look back on this year, I realize that a big part of my problem was being caught unprepared. Because I’m self-employed, I rely heavily on writing projects to survive. If I’m not working consistently, or promoting my services to get more clients, eventually I’ll have an even bigger problem.

Life happens. There’s no way of knowing what’s coming around the corner, but if I’m prepared for unexpected obstacles, twists and turns, they’ll have less of an effect on my earned income. This year will be different. Here's to a new year, a fresh start and the chance to try a different approach.
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