Use this Word to Boost Your FreelanceYou may not know this, but I’m a second-career nurse. My first career was in business administration, public relations and marketing. Desk jobs.

I returned to college at mid-life to pursue a lifelong goal: become a nurse. It was exciting…and very, very scary. Would I be smart enough to complete the course work? Would I have the stamina (at my age) to pull 12-hour clinical rotations on a med-surg floor? Would I faint at the sight of blood?

Fear is a natural part of the learning curve

As you launch a freelance writing career, you may be experiencing similar jitters. Try to remember fear is natural whenever we undertake something new and unfamiliar. The key to achievement is managing that fear as you move from novice to master.

Think about it: life constantly presents new challenges that evoke in us a twinge of anxiety. The first time you drive a car, your hands may shake a little. As you master the skill, you find yourself sliding behind the wheel with confidence.

Nursing school presented me with challenges that gave me more than a mild twinge of anxiety. The first time I started an IV or placed a Foley, I was a nervous wreck. And then I learned a secret to help me conquer those fears.

Add this one word to your vocabulary to find confidence as a freelance writer

Because I entered nursing school for the experiential aspects as much as for the skill-building, I decided one day to let go of my fears and fully immerse myself in the program. On that day, I banished the word “no” from my vocabulary and replaced it with what I call ‘the rapid YES.’

When you say “yes” to something before that timid, doubtful “no” can escape your lips, you send yourself a signal of self-confidence: “Yes; I can do that.” The more often you say “yes,” the more quickly you will overcome the fears and anxieties that accompany doing something new.

Leap before you look

I call this my “leap before you look” method. Almost my entire freelance career has been built on taking leaps of faith, on quickly saying “yes” to something before I could seriously consider the implications of the decision—and talk myself out of it.Don’t stop to ask yourself ‘if’ you can (1)

In nursing school, this tactic landed me spots in coveted rotations like the OR. Because I raised my hand faster than anyone else, I got in. Those who took more time to consider their options got left behind.

In freelance writing, you will often be asked to produce deliverables you’ve never written before. Maybe you’ve always written articles but today someone asks you to write a white paper. Say “yes.” Don’t stop to ask yourself ‘if’ you can do it. Simply grab the opportunity and then teach yourself as you go. You will be surprised at how your freelance confidence will grow the more often you say “yes” to these opportunities.

The more I said “yes” in nursing school, the more confident I became as a nurse. The same can be true for you, as a freelance writer.

Have you ever said “yes” to a freelance opportunity and then thought, “Oh, no! What did I just do??” Tell us about it in the comments!

Wishing you well,