5 Sweet Ways To Enjoy Self-Employment Again

Looking for self-employed tips? Want to enjoy being self-employed again? Working for yourself can be isolating, tedious, and frustrating. These 5 tips will help you like it again!

Self-employment isn’t always easy, is it? We spend years chasing the dream and then we get bogged down in invoices, client management and working from a messy dining room table.

But it’s possible to enjoy self-employment again! Really! Julie has been self-employed for 20+ years (!!!) and today she’s helping us fall back in love with working for ourselves.

5 ways to enjoy self-employment again

1. Write down your goals, desires and dreams for the next year of your business

Go ahead, we’ll wait…
Do you have an anxiety-inducingly long list in front of you and no idea how where to start? Perfect, you did it right!
Go through that list and pick out something that seems really juicy and break that task down into itty bitty baby steps that aren’t quite so intimidating. Stop focusing on the rest of the list and just focus on this new relaxing list.
Here is an example from my personal list:
  • Redesign my store web site home page 
  • Email web designer and schedule time to start project 
  • Find five web sites that have a look I admire 
  • Go through three magazines and cut out pictures that have the feel I want 
  • Ask two friends what they would like to see on my home page 
  • Make a list of my changes 
All of a sudden that task seems totally doable. Do one of your baby steps today!

2. Make your work space sparkle and shine

I think it’s super important to have a designated work space that is uncluttered and full of inspiration. This one is simple: clean up your mess. For some reason, when my work space looks pretty I make more money.
It could be Feng Shui, or it could be that when our spaces are cleared we feel good. When we feel really good people want to spend their money with us. Make a vision board for your business and hang it somewhere front and center where you can get inspiration and re-focus from time to time.

3.  Surround yourself with successful people 

It’s great if you have a huge group of friends that party all night and go to their desk jobs all day, but now is the time to expand your circle to include as many people as possible that are doing what you want to do. I gave this suggestion to someone once on a consulting call and she was sure she couldn’t do it because she lived in a small town and there simply wasn’t anyone around that inspired her.
I had her send emails to three people that she looked up to in her field. She sent simple emails that were along the lines of “Hey, I think what you’re doing is awesome”, which is a very non-intimidating way to send an email. She now has a circle of online (super inspirational) friends that she checks in with regularly. Reach out to one person today!

Related: How to network with substance, style, and soul

4. Get over your fear of self-promotion

I understand, it’s scary and intimidating. Today is the day to practice talking to yourself in the mirror about what you do. Come up with your 2-3 sentence cocktail pitch about your business, make it fun and enticing.
“I am a personal trainer” is very unexciting and I would not want to hire you. “I am a personal trainer and I mostly work with new moms who are trying to get their abs back!” would make me want to hire you and/or tell some friends.

5. Turn your computer off, put your phone on silent, and engage in some self-care

When we are starting a new business or trying to run a business it is very easy to put our self care on the back burner, when in reality that should be at the very front. Always, always, always make time to do something for yourself daily. It could be as extravagant as a pedicure or it could be something as simple as taking five extra minutes in the morning to close your eyes and breathe.
Because honestly, if you are following the first four steps then you will soon be lost in a sea of business and opportunities. If you don’t stop to admire yourself, relax and enjoy the process then what was it all for?

Related: How to spend money on yourself and your happiness

If you’ve been self-employed for a long time, how do you stay excited about it? How do you stay fresh? Tell us in the comments so we can try your tips!

P.S. How to beat self-employment burnout

photo by Ewan Robertson // cc


Elizabeth Dehn

All so very true—esp the need to do something for yourself each day, as counter-intuitive as that feels when you're starting a new business. I may need to read this post daily as a reminder! Thank you S + J!


I own a writing business but know that I'm not pushing myself as hard as I can with it – mostly because I have a day job that pays the bills. I liked Julie's article. In my case, I find it really difficult to promote myself & my business. I think I need to work on that for now.

Nicola Balkind

Fantastic post – thank you!

I second the one about finding inspirational people. Many of the people I look up to are now my editors and mentors (willingly or unwillingly!) and although sometimes they miss your point and assume you have something to learn, it's always great to have someone to ask for advice or give you a punch on the shoulder when you least expect it.

I'd also suggest going to any networking groups that meet in your area to meet similar small business owners and potential clients.

Ellie Di

Today marks 1 month to the day that I opened my biz, and I'm struggling mightily with that last step. I've taken about zero time for self-care or celebration, and it's (probably literally) making me nuts! There are other obstacles to making myself successful that're getting in my way, but I suspect I'd feel loads better about them if I'd just give myself permission to take a break!


My business will be open a year in November. I'm having a hard time getting over my fear of self-promotion, I know I need to in order for my business to blossom. Thank you so much for this fantastic & inspiring list.

alexia serpentini

I just wanted to say how perfect this was for where I am at right now. I'm not trying to start a business, but rather my career as an artist (which will be hard because i'm not trying to sell anything!!). the advice still stands though, especially when you're at the very beginning and path around you looks just as promising as the next.


I just discovered your blog, and I wanted to say that I'm really obsessed! I love this post and basically the whole shabang, so keep doing what you're doing!

Joan Silva

Love this article. So up my alley in entrepreneurial coaching. Love your writing style and appreciate your guidance. Thank you.


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