Never undersell your worth
Desperation for money + imposter syndrome = getting lowballed
Imposter syndrome is something that most freelancers will suffer from at some point. It’s quite common for freelancers just starting out to suffer with it as they don’t feel they are ‘proper’ writers/artists/designers or whatever they are, yet.
But I have news for you, if you’re charging for your services then you are a ‘proper’ whatever. Even if you’re doing it for free, then you’re still a ‘proper’ whatever.
This is it. It’s real. You’re doing it. You may not have a lot of experience yet but it doesn’t mean what you’re doing is inferior to what someone with more experience might do. Talent and passion can go a long way when you lack experience.
If the work you do is just as good as what someone with a lot more experience could do, then surely you deserve to get paid the same? Clients don’t need to know how much experience you have, they just need to know you can do the job.
Don’t let yourself get pressured into taking on jobs or clients that aren’t going to pay your worth just because you desperately need the money. Walking away from toxic or lowballing clients gives you the opportunity to find better work and clients.
The worse your clients, the more likely you are to fail as you get stuck in the cycle of never realising your self worth.
I’d always recommend trying some side hustles to keep money rolling in so you have something to fall back on. I’d also always recommend having savings to fall back on. The more you can improve your financial stability the greater the power you’ll have over saying no to the low ballers.
Being able to pick and choose your clients and projects sounds like a dream but it should be a reality for freelancers. If you’re stuck working for too low pay for one client then you’re going to be missing out on a better client.
So, get your finances in order and shake off that imposter syndrome. And if you can’t do that, then go the fake it until you make it route. Remember that you’re running a business and there’s no room for self-doubt in business. Learn to leave emotion off the table when you’re negotiating and if client’s start to raise red flags, then learn to walk away, fast.
You never know what’s round the next corner.