We’re in the first months of a new year which means I can guess that 50% of you reading this resonated with the blog title a lil too much.
I’m always honest with you. I feel that’s important because I’m not anyone special. I’m just a gal who knew the 9-5 life wasn’t the way.
When I tell you it’s OK to lose a client and ALSO be sad and upset and hurt about losing a client… I mean it all.
As someone with experience in this domain — my first client ever ended our contract at the end of 2020 after two years together — I want to remind you that when one door closes, another one opens.
But before you open the other door, let me acknowledge something: It’s OK for you to feel your feels.
Now, for the sake of transparency, I went into a spiral when I lost that client. Here’s what that magical mess looked like:
“I’m the breadwinner! What am I going to do without that money coming in?!”
“Did I do something wrong? She said it was a strategy thing but maybe she didn’t like my writing?”
“Where am I going to find another client in this climate?”
I’m not proud of the spiral, but I want to assure you it’s NORMAL. Especially as a freelancer.
Our entire working situation is up in the air. We create long-term contracts, have passive income, and diversify our income streams to provide some semblance of stability but, in the end, we’re at the mercy of our clients. They’re the ones who hire us and provide that stability.
With that in mind, remember to create true connections and relationships with your clients. Past clients may refer others to you, come back for more, or decide they made a mistake and hire you back.
That’s the upside to losing a client I never want you to forget.
The other thing I never want you to forget?
My number one tip when a client ends your working relationship together.
You’ve found clients before, you’ll find clients again. It may look different than you imagined, but they will come. And all these “failures” you experience along the way are teaching you everything you need to be successful and resilient.
I like to think of freelancers as the most resourceful people in the world. We don’t sit idly by and twiddle our thumbs when something happens to us. Instead, we navigate a rocky and potentially uncomfortable situation with grace and persistence.
We find new ways to entertain ourselves or fill our time. A new onboarding process here, a revamped service there, but one thing’s for sure… we never give up.
That belief, in ourselves and our dream, is how I know you’ll find a new client. In fact, you’ll find one that’s even more aligned with the direction you’re hoping to take your business this year. I just know it.
Or maybe you’re in a period where work isn’t the priority anymore. Something has shifted and your relationships or health (mental or physical) are becoming what you value most.
I get it.
Think about using this time to redefine success for yourself.
Do you love the clients the DO work with? Are you happy with the work you’re doing? Do you feel fulfilled going to bed at night?
Either way, you’re not alone and it’s totally normal. Feel good about that!
Lost a client and feeling yourself spiral? I bet you could use some freelance friends to encourage you and tell you it gets better. If so, the Social Support Incubator — a global membership community for freelancers and digital nomads who run their business remotely — is for you.