Loneliness Awareness Week 2021: Managing loneliness as a freelancer

Three experts share their advice

Loneliness has been a thread running through this past year. Isolation, fear, loss – it’s been a lonely time for many if not all of us.

Working from home was perhaps a fun thing at the start, but I think for many people the long-term video meetings, lack of interaction with human colleagues and not even leaving the house for lunch has added hugely to the problem.

Many were lonely before all this, let alone during or after.

As freelancers, there’s a lot of things that have come to everyone in the pandemic which perhaps felt like something we were already dealing with. The stresses of working from home, for example, or the pressure to ‘perform’ virtually.

Loneliness is one of them, in my opinion. For freelancers, the feels of working alone for days, wondering if someone has read our email, fretting whether we’ve said the right thing on slack or messenger, wishing we could have a coffee break with ‘in real life’ people, longing perhaps for the social side of office or shop life. It’s a real and ongoing juggle for us – many are thinking of returning to the office, gradually, but for freelancers the loneliness I’ve described could continue.

This week is Loneliness Awareness Week, and to mark that I wanted to get some advice and tips from people who have researched – and lived – the subject. I was due to finish this and send out on Wednesday, but then, in a freak moment, I slipped on an early morning walk with Roger (Flo was at home, but she’s fine!) and broke my ankle!

Two days later, here it is – as you read this, I’m waiting for an operation to pin the ankle. Proof, if we ever needed it right now and as freelancers, that you really don’t know what’s around the corner… or down the hill… I’ve actually felt the opposite of lonely since Weds, as I’ve had loads of messages and the paramedics and staff at the hospital have all been amazing!

But I often do feel lonely, and, if you do too, here’s what the experts want you to know:

Cheryl Rickman is author of Navigating Loneliness: How to connect with yourself and others, and told me there are three types of loneliness. “It’s important to understand the different dimensions of loneliness. There are three main types of loneliness, all of which come from a lack of connection. Emotional loneliness is caused by a lack of close relationships with people to confide in; social loneliness is caused by the relational lack of a trustworthy and supportive social network and existential loneliness is a feeling of collective detachment from others. Each type of loneliness corresponds with three main types of connection: inner circle, middle circle and outer circle, each of which can go some way towards providing a defence against their corresponding type of loneliness.”

Cheryl continues: “Emotional loneliness requires the development of deeper relationships with one or more person you can trust and confide in. Whereas, the type of loneliness that is perhaps more common for freelancers to feel is social loneliness, because freelancers are working alone without support from management or colleagues. As such, it’s important to try to cultivate connections with those who are in the same boat. Loneliness is about a lack of companionship; feeling isolated and left out from others. This is why you need not be physically alone to feel lonely.  You can spend a lot of time by yourself and enjoy the solace of solitude just as you can be surrounded by people, at home or at work, yet feel incredibly lonely. For a freelancer, feeling supported by other freelancers can be a positive antidote to the isolation of working solo from home. Connecting with a group of people within a freelance network, individually and as a whole, can contribute to a feeling of belonging and counter feelings of social loneliness.”

So, what can we freelancers do? Cheryl has four key pieces of advice:

1.  Get out of the house and tap into the flexibility and work-life balance that working from home can offer. If your work is such that you can work from anywhere with a web connection, hit the road occasionally and work from a coffee shop, a library, anywhere you’re not alone. Just escaping the confines of home can make a big difference.

2.      Synergise connection with tasks. Freelancers are often busy juggling working on projects with working to secure work. With busyness sometimes getting in the way of time to connect, you might need to get creative. One idea is to synergise multiple tasks into the same time period. For example, if you need to walk the dog, discuss a project with an editor, and post a parcel,  walk the dog to the post office and talk to your editor on the phone while you do so, then schedule in some time to spend in face-to-face connection with a friend.

3.      Schedule positivity-boosting activities during regular working breaks to counter the negative impact of loneliness. Try writing down three things you are grateful for, performing a random act of kindness or making a thank you card during your lunch break then delivering it.

4.      Cultivate more connection outside of work. Connect more outside of working hours to counter the deficiency that is causing loneliness. Volunteering can be a wonderful way to meet new people and feel part of a community working together for a good cause. Other benefits of volunteering come from the good feelings which being of service gives us.

Next, I asked Gill Hasson, author of Lonely Less: How to Connect with Others, Make Friends and Feel Less Lonely, which cam out on June 17, if we can suffer a different kind of loneliness as freelancers. (You can follow her @gillhasson) “Yes,” she said. “Firstly, there’s the loneliness of being physically separate from others. You’re in a room/office/workshop alone without any one to have a quick chat with, go for coffee or lunch with and share ideas with. It is, after all, with those small interactions with colleagues that connections are made. Whole days can slip by without you actually have seen or spoken with anyone. You can feel quite isolated.”

“Secondly, you have to make all the decisions. And every decision you make has a direct effect on you, your welfare, your income your career. You may struggle to get help, advice and support when you run into problems with your work. Which just add to your sense of being alone.

Thirdly, you may well feel that friends and family don’t understand your work life; that there’s a disconnect between their working day and week and yours. For example, others often think you’re always free to run chores and errands and take time out to take family members for their appointments. Or they can’t understand why you often need to work at weekends or in the evening. It’s frustrating and leaves you feeling very much on your own.”

Gill’s top three tips are:

1. Do take a proper lunchbreak. There’s probably other people - neighbours, family or friends - nearby who also work from home. Arrange to meet up with those people. Meet for a short walk, a sandwich in the park, a snack in a cafe or pub.

2. Do make plans for after work too. Plans that involve meeting up with others; family and friends. As someone who works from home writing for large parts of the day, I rarely feel isolated because a few days in the week, I meet up with a friend or neighbour for coffee, lunch or a walk.

3. Join associations, Facebook groups and other social media groups for others that work in the same profession / industry as you, and attend conferences, and training. This is an important thing to do because the other people are, in many ways, your colleagues. Connecting with others in social media groups and events can provide support and sharing of ideas.

Finally, some words to sign off from Chez Spector,  founder of the Alonement community, who spoke to me for the Freelance Feels podcast. She credits journaling with helping her find peace with freelance loneliness.

“Quite a lot of the conversations I have with people now are around loneliness. Even the word alone, which can be a very neutral word, the contexts in which we use it are often quite negative. ‘I feel so alone’… nine times out of ten, that’s a bad, negative statement. So, the fact that people can’t immediately get their head around the idea that Alonement can be a good thing, not only do I understand that, that was me for 27 years before I created this concept!”

For her, a version of ‘morning pages’ is a great way to remove mental blocks before the day. “I would have a ‘morning meeting’ with myself. Without doing that, I’d be overcome by fear and mental obstacles around doing all these big scary things. It’s a constant process of cheerleading for yourself. And not to say you get that from the office, but you think you might, you live in hope of that rather than looking for it from yourself.”

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June: Turning down the volume on the freelance noise

It’s not about making them quieter, more about what you choose to hear

Sitting in the garden on a sunny Sunday (the last Sunday in May), I realised something was different – there was more noise. The sound of music (not the actual film, just tunes), laughter, chatting, lawnmowers, the crackle of a barbecue and pop of a cork from a bottle. Normal summer sounds, of course, but ones I hadn’t heard for a long time at such volume, because of lockdowns.

Outside the house, the traffic on the road is noisier, the rumble of engines, whizz of bike wheels and the chatter of groups of people walking into my local town. Then, in town, more noise, from the movement of tables outside pubs and cafes to children in a nearby playground or the bark of a dog.

It’s unavoidable - living in the UK, where lockdown has been easing, life is getting noisier. While it’s strange, I don’t mind it. The signs of life coming back to the community are more than welcome. I moved to Oxfordshire from North London (I’m from Surrey, originally), during a break in the lockdowns, in August 2020, and it’s wonderful to see the town opening up, business doors flung open and pavements filled with people having drinks and catching up. It’s challenging to have two dogs in the mix as I walk the pavements or navigate the field where we walk, which was often emptier. But, on the whole, the noise means life is getting back to normal and that can be no bad thing in the long run even if it’s a challenge short-term as I adjust.

‘Real life’ noise is one thing, though. But the other place I’ve noticed more noise is online, particularly on social media. It seems to me that, lately, everyone is turning up the volume on their freelance noise. Whether it’s sharing new Reels to Instagram with the most popular tune, doing a ‘live’, dancing on TikTok or posting on LinkedIn and Facebook – the noise on my social media has gone up alongside the gardens and traffic. There’s a lot of ‘look at me!’ and ‘I’ve done THIS!’.

And it’s not so pleasant. The noise from other freelancers can feel deafening, and it’s often so loud – and so many voices at once – that it can really damage our wellbeing and mental health if we let it. We might not be prone to comparing ourselves to someone, but the more they shout, the more we end up hearing them, and then the comparison begins.

Lately, I’ve found that I’ve been distracted so much by other people’s noise, that I’ve veered from my own to-do list or path, wondering if I should be doing more of what they’re doing. One person’s noise has made me question my entire business plan, while another’s has made me wonder if my podcast is any good! I sit, scrolling, letting the volume get louder and louder, as if the scroll itself is a volume button with no limit.

But, hold on. It’s not their noise, or them that’s made me think or feel those things. Arguably, it’s me. As freelancers, we choose to listen to their noise, and we choose what volume we have it turned up at. So I am striving not to silence them, or turn down their noise, but to turn down the volume at which I listen to it.

With freelancing in mind, this is so I can try and focus on what I’m planning, making my own way and doing my own thing. Is that putting myself in a bubble? I did wonder if it was. I’m also aware that I make my own noise which might, in turn, bother other people or cause them to veer off their path. There are the corks popping in my own garden, my own music on the stereo with the window open. My car driving down the road, my dogs barking (Roger!).

The idea of my freelance noise upsetting someone bothered me because I would hate to think I’d caused that. It’s a fine line between making enough noise to build a business and keep your own goals in focus, and not shout so loud you become like a giant foghorn, in everyone else’s faces.

So, how to find balance? For me, turning down the noise from other people starts with how much I listen to it, at any volume. That is to say, ‘tuning in’ to their frequency by following them on social media, specifically on the ‘stories’ part of Instagram. Stories is often where people shout louder, it’s more of a running commentary on their lives and, if social is a showreel, Instagram is the outtakes, script, and promo material.

Secondly, I am reminding myself that people only shout about the good things. It’s easy to forget that. Someone might be up to their highest volume both on their dial and yours, about a project, some kind of win, or a challenge – but in reality, there are a lot of other things they’re not shouting so loudly about. We never seem to shout loud about the failures, or the upsets, do we? I guess that’s social media, in many ways.

Third up is choosing which ‘stations’ you listen to. If other people are radio stations on a dial, or in your digital radio, you can programme which ones you listen to as priority. Setting your ‘alarm clock’ to someone’s noise about their business could really wake you up into a bad mood. If you are going to listen in, make sure you listen in on your terms – when you’re open to hearing what they have to say. Choose the stations that work for you, and if they don’t suit you, tune into others. Follow new people, make connections with people who make the right noise that’s music to your ears.

The only true way to turn down the volume you hear other freelancers at, though, is to turn off the stream of sound. Take a break from social media, or the places you hear from other freelancers. Is that the advice I’d give you? It’s very personal – I do think a break is important, as well as choosing when you listen. I enjoy social media and like spending my time on there, in general. I see it as a good tool for business and I enjoy seeing other freelancers thrive. But there is an argument for only checking at certain times, and always coming back to that knowledge that people are only shouting louder about the things they really want you to hear. Remind yourself that the one shout they’ve done that deafens you could be the only thing they’ve said in their otherwise rather silent day.

READ, LISTEN, SUBSCRIBE

Read: This article on boundaries in business looks at where to draw lines between yourself and clients.

Listen: This week my guest on the podcast was chef, pub owner, author and presenter Tom Kerridge on the Freelance Feels podcast. He was so entertaining, honest and fun to talk to and I’ll always be so chuffed he made the time to speak to me. A longer piece with some quotes from him will go live on the Freelance Feels blog this month.

Subscribe: Two for you this month! I appeared with both these ladies on a panel in May, so I’m sharing both their newsletters

1)    Rachael Davies runs Failing Publicly, all about her ‘freelance fails’ as a journalist.

2)    Mixed Messages is a ‘weekly newsletter all about the mixed-race experience’ with interviews by Isabella Silvers.

Some upcoming things from me… (said at the end in a quiet voice, not too shouty!)

My one-day workshop for coaches who want to know journalist tips, and work on press coverage that suits their coaching business and niche still has places left for June 11. There are 30 listed on Eventbrite because some have booked with me directly - if you do so you can have 10% off the price! (It’s £350).

I’m a guest speaker on diversifying your freelance career for IPSE’s National Freelancers Day on June 17

Going Freelance with Confidence runs on July 10 at City, University of London

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If you’ve enjoyed this newsletter please do share, and tag me if you’d like (@freelance_feels). If you enjoy the podcast, please rate and review it!

For the coaches among you

Announcing a new workshop all about media coverage for your coaching business

Hello everyone,

As you know, I usually keep the newsletter to a monthly missive unless there is a pertinent day or event in the calendar.

But I wanted to get a message to any of you who are coaches, as I’ve launched a workshop specifically for coaches - coaches who’d like to secure media coverage for their business.

So - non coaches, delete! (ooh, or send this to the coaches you know…)

Coaches, read on…

‘How to get your coaching business featured in the media’ is a one-day workshop all about securing press coverage, the kind of coverage that will resonate with your clients and brand and help gain you the right kind of visibility.

The full details are on my website https://www.freelancefeels.com/workshops

And Eventbrite: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/o/jenny-stallardfreelance-feels-31076774243

There’s an early bird price of £250 if you sign up in May.

Please do email me if you have any questions!

Jenny

Here's to the #littlefreelancewins🎖🌵

Sometimes freelance life can feel all about the big wins and the massive achievements – especially when we’re looking at other people’s, which (and I don’t know about you, but this is so true for me) seem so, so HUGE and way bigger than our own. It’s like the world is meeting all their goals and milestones while we’re just, well….. trying (and feeling like we’re failing).

From book deals and podcast launches to collaborations, downloads or super duper follower numbers, everyone shouts about the big wins, don’t they? I know I do it too, for sure! It’s the large wins that we often focus on, work towards and celebrate the most. The new clients, the price raise that a customer goes for, launching a podcast, writing a book or being interviewed for an article.

The little wins often get forgotten. But then the problem is that if there is no really big win, and you also forget the little wins, it can feel like there are no wins at all. Which is rubbish – even if it’s not the case. You see, there are always wins. There is always something you did that you didn’t expect to do, or that challenged you. Let’s big up the little wins together!

And I’m not talking medium, I’m talking little. The things that might seem teeny-tiny, that you consider to be everyday occurrences, or that you don’t feel count as a win – those ones. The day-to-day ‘stuff’, the things we overlook but that actually do the hardest work to keep us going more than we might realise.

Recently I’ve been experiencing a lot of anxiety, and I’ve been working hard to manage it. (I share that not to make you worry, but so you know that if you have, too, you’re not alone). One thing that’s come to the fore is that the smaller things in life are actually big things when you’re feeling pretty on edge or not very positive about yourself.

Here’s an example:

Lots of groups that I’m in, including one I co-admin, have ‘wins’ threads, where you can post the things you’ve been up to, shout about your work, share things, crow about your success. They’re great – a clear way to share if you want to engage with people, or a place to show off without seeming so ‘showy offy’.

In one group I’m in, I shared some news, that I had signed up a new one on one client. And then… well then I shared that I’d been ‘brave’ enough to leave the dogs by themselves (safely at home) and go to M&S to get my favourite wrap for lunch.

It felt like a huge deal. And I realised that it really was a huge deal. It showed me I was doing better than I thought. I was managing. I’d got out, I’d made a choice, I’d achieved the goal of getting that wrap.

For many of us, it’s the small things that can show we are still managing. The small things can be an indicator of our commitment, our drive, our courage or our tenacity. It wasn’t just any old wrap, it was a wrap that I battled the ‘leave the dogs alone’ anxiety to get. (And they got treats, too, so it’s a win-win).

As I’m sure many of you do, I follow Matt Haig for his words of wisdom, and this post stood out to me, in particular the part about being scared of things and still doing them. That can apply to the ‘little things’ too.

A post shared by @mattzhaig

Taking those small actions outside or beyond our comfort zone can feel like huge mountains to climb and not acknowledging them is a shame.

Little wins can be business related, or life related that help your business. Getting out for a walk when it felt – and became - impossible the day before. I joke on Instagram about hair washing day but getting up, washed and dressed is a huge little win for many of us. Sending an invoice (which I always put off, like it’s asking a favour. I know. I shall speak to my coach about this!).

Each tiny thing is a cog in the machine that makes you ‘freelance you’ and they are vitally important.

Maybe you got time to yourself, finished off that ‘thing’ that was really bugging you. Maybe you posted on a group when you had a dilemma and that, for you, was a huge deal. Perhaps you tidied your desk, did a bit of admin, or made an effort to drink more water. Maybe you got up, perhaps that was your win. It doesn’t have to be a work thing to make a difference to your work. That wrap was the boost I needed for my afternoon ahead! (Oh, and the ginger beer, too).

The point I hope I’m making is to not dismiss the baby steps you take day by day to get through freelance life. Those are the foundations that the house of ‘big wins’ are built on.

So let’s celebrate the little wins. If you want to, please do share them with me. If you reply to this email I’ll screen grab and share on social. Or feel free to share and tag me (Instagram is best) @freelance_feels

Use the hashtag #littlefreelancewins

Some things I’m doing that you can sign up to….

This Saturday (May 8th), I’m running a one-day workshop, Going Freelance With Confidence, at City, University of London, and there are still places available.

My masterclass for coaches who want to know all the secrets of how to get press coverage for your coaching business is now open for bookings. you can choose from June 11 or 12. It’s £350 but for newsletter subscribers, £300 if you book in May.

Join in with National Freelancers Day 2021, where I’ll be speaking about how to diversify your freelance career. That’s also Freelance Feels’ second birthday!

LISTEN: A friend recommended this podcast to me and can’t believe I’d not listened to it before! FEEL BETTER LIVE MORE with Dr Chatterjee looks at all things mental health, with some great guests and bitesize episodes too.

Another great listen was the Gardener’s World Magazine podcast with Gynelle Lyon of Prick London, talking all about Cacti and their resilience!

READ: Seven ways I deal with stress as a freelancer

SUBSCRIBE: This is slightly more of a ‘sign up’ but I want to highlight the Introduction to Copywriting course with Maggie Richards, who has been a huge support to me while I begin my work with City. The next date for this is May 22.

Thank you for reading my newsletter! If you enjoyed it, do share it. If you enjoyed this, why not try the Freelance Feels podcast - and if you enjoy that, do take a moment to write a review.

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April: Dealing with freelancer stress

It's Stress Awareness Month

If any year brought us stress, it’s the one that’s just gone by, right? As freelancers, there are so many things that can make us stressed that when I started thinking of a list it felt never ending!

There’s money – and having to generate our own income – and dealing with all the things that come with that (invoices, taxes, chasing late payments). The stress of finding new clients, working with them, worrying that we’re doing it right, and the stresses that come with being the ‘everything’ for our business, from the marketing to the IT to the HR to being the bookkeeper and planning social media…

You might have noticed this newsletter is a little later than it might normally land in your inbox. Well, getting it done was stressing me out!

And I’ve been putting off sending it because it didn’t seem quite right. Who was – am – I to give advice on dealing with stress? You see, if I’m honest, I’m not amazing at dealing with it. I’m reactionary. I cry, I even scream, I get angry and I get panicked. I have anxiety when I am stressed, to the point where I can even break down in tears.

I can get so angry my jaw clenches, my blood feels like it’s starting to boil, I have conversations to the air around me, imagining what I’d like to say to the person or situation that’s stressed me out.

I get stressed with clients (not to their face!), and I get stressed with myself, then, when I’m stressed, I judge myself for not being able to cope or stay calm. I’m sharing this because I want to be honest – I can’t say ‘I cope with stress all the time, and you can too’. So, this month’s newsletter is a mixture of some things that work for me and other resources where there is professional help and advice which can help you further.

The theme for this year’s awareness month is ‘Regaining Connectivity, Certainty and Control’. I really love that. To me, it’s saying ‘ok, fine, we know we are stressed, but let’s try and move forward from it, not to overcome or beat it, but regaining. It’s pressing reset, in a way. That’s what often happens to me, when the stress fades, there’s a reset. Whether it’s the stress of something immediate (an email in your inbox that’s someone else’s ‘urgent’) or money, workload (or lack of it) or pressure on yourself to be the best. When the calm comes, I sometimes learn a lesson about how I could have done things differently in that situation.

Here’s what has worked for me:

Outsourcing

Yes, I know this is an ‘if you can afford it’ one. But it could be that with some maths, you realise that you can afford it, and perhaps it could actually help you generate more income long-term. One thing I outsourced earlier this year was a revamp of my website and I don’t regret it at all! First up, the time you’d spend on something to ‘save’ the money that outsourcing it would cost is then taken away from your earning time. Secondly, outsourcing is like a magic wand that erases the stress of the task from your mind.

Exercise

Obvious, right? Well, I think we all forget to do it, and most importantly we forget to do the exercise we actually like. But I imagine that when you do, you feel less stressed. So, this one’s twofold – doing exercise, but exercise you like to do. Personally, I’m counting the days until the local Lido reopens. I used to run a lot but actually found it quite stressful (sports bras have a lot to answer for). Maybe team sports are your go-to, or long walks, or you’ll be first in the queue for the gym again.

Breathing

I was going to do a section on meditation, but I don’t meditate so didn’t feel it was the right thing to advise on. That said, it involves considered breathing, as does Yoga, so I’ve gone for breathing in general. Stop. Breathe. Slowly, deeply. Use an app to help calm your breathing if you’d like to. But take time to breathe, to let the air in and out of your lungs. I’d also recommend taking a breath (or ten) before replying to an annoying email, to answering a call that says ‘unknown number’ or looking at social media (again).

Talking

No this isn’t just me shoe horning in coaching! It really helps me, and I think if you have blocks in your business that are holding you back or you feel are in the way, then coaching can help you remove them. On the same lines, if you need to, consider talking to a professional therapist about your stress. And if neither seem quite right, you could try talking to a friend or freelance ‘colleague’. As part of the advice for this month, the Stress Management Society advises to share what has worked for you, so while I’ve done that, I urge you to do the same. If you do, and would like to tag me on social media, I’ll keep my eye out so I can re-post!

Singing and dancing

Ok, so we’ll have to wait a little longer to do this with a lot of people, but for now, stopping to put on some favourite tunes can be a real stress buster. For me, it’s always 80s music that does the trick. Here’s Wham!, just because.

Unfollowing

Oh god, you think, she’s said it again?! But then you still have ‘that’ account you follow which stresses you out, don’t you? I’ll say it once more IT’S OK TO UNFOLLOW. This is something that came up in a recent podcast episode with Fiona Thomas, and she has lots of other fab advice in her episode too and her book, Out of Office.

TV

I really like watching TV. And it definitely de-stresses me! Especially ‘guilty pleasure’ TV like 90 Day Fiancé or Say Yes to the Dress. Coronation Street, Line of Duty… I’m not a TV snob, in fact quite the opposite.

Dogs

If you follow me on Instagram (although I understand if you’ve unfollowed for some reason!) then you’ll most likely have seen Florence and Roger, our dogs. Roger is basically a giant hugging machine. And yes, while they do bring me stresses, they are also the most amazing stress relievers. Time wasters, too. But I wouldn’t have it any other way. If you don’t have or can’t get a pet, then try seeing if you can borrow one – a friend might let you pet sit once we can go indoors again, or perhaps you can meet a friend who has a dog for a walk.

And some professional Resources:

The Stress Management Society which runs Stress Awareness Month has a challenge for the month as well as lots of advice

Rethink Mental Illness has resources on Stress including PTSD

This booklet from Mind is useful, too

Identify signs of stress and order a special booklet from the Mental Health Foundation

Read, listen, subscribe:

READ: Anna Codrea-Rado’s new book ‘You’re the Business’ is a practical take on freelancing which will help tackle the stresses in many different ways. And she’s coming up as a guest on the Freelance Feels podcast soon, too.

LISTEN: Startup Magazine’s podcast, The Cereal Entrepreneur, will cover several aspects of self-employed life, including talking to technology startups themselves, to get their stories and journeys out there to the world, as well as talking to industry experts who can shed light and give advice in a number of areas that startups will go through.

SUBSCRIBE: This is also a ‘buy’ I guess! Freelancer Magazine is new, and is one to check out whether you’re new to freelancing or an ‘old hand’… I love that it’s in print format, not online.

If you enjoy the newsletter, or a particular part of it, feel free to screengrab and share on social, tagging me @freelance_feels or share the link and tag me. Forward on to those you think might like it, too.

Listen to the Freelance Feels podcast

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Find out more about coaching with me

See you in May!

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