Stories, great flapping ribbons of shaped space-time, have been blowing and uncoiling around the universe since the beginning of time. And they have evolved. The weakest have died and the strongest have survived and they have grown fat on the retelling…stories, twisting and blowing through the darkness.
Terry Pratchett, [Witches Abroad]
Among the pack of ravenous stories that habitually “prey” on the imaginations of [[expert]] entrepreneurs going “freelance” is the story of a smart, mentally tough person that survived the first year, and then lived happily ever after.
It’s insidious because statistically, you are more likely to fail in the few years after the first one.
This is because after quitting someone else’s business, you are riding the coattails of the past job, using contacts, projects, and reputation that you earned on that job, and the benefits of your own network supporting you by telling your story to others.
Those sources of clients will however fade, and if you keep telling yourself that “clearly” you doing a good job is going to bring you enough jobs to get by, you could end up gobbled up by that story and being forced to get a job again.
Prospecting and building reserves into your pricing are necessary. Projects will not simply keep finding the way to your door. It’s a story, which sounds great until you remember what stories eat.