Freelance Writing Online and the Art of Letting Go

When it comes to freelance writing online, I’m all about hard work. I’m all about getting out there and taking massive action towards my goals. It’s great if you are too.

What I’ve realised though is that all this striving and pushing – all this moulding and sculpting and wanting – has in fact created a glass ceiling through which I can never penetrate while in the same mindset.

If you’re feeling frustrated with your freelance writing online career, has it ever occurred to you that all the goal-setting, the wishing and the striving might be causing it to stall?

This is a hard post for me to write

It’s hard because on Freelance Writers Online I’ve always advocated having confidence, taking action and going out and doing something about your freelance writing career.

I stand by that too. To a degree.

It’s also difficult because there is such a wide spectrum of people who want to make a living from freelance writing online.

Some of you may be thinking about starting a career as a freelance writer but spend most of your time making mental lists of all the reasons why you couldn’t or shouldn’t. That’s called being inactive – you’ve stalled because you’ve created things for your mind to chew over.

There’s a fine line between letting go of the baggage surrounding your goal-setting and sitting around procrastinating while playing Angry Birds all day.

At the other end of the spectrum though, there are those of you who appear to be doing everything you possibly can to become the high-earning freelance writer you want to be. You’re pitching, pushing on and projecting yourself and your career into a better future…

…and you’re essentially unhappy. Why? Because nothing seems to stick. It’s all too hit and miss. Where are you going wrong? You’re trying so, very very hard after all.

It’s for the latter that I write this post – and it’s important to tell you this in the way it came to me:

Stop standing on tip-toes.

Stop stretching and straining. Stop living in the perfect future that will never come. It will never be then – it will only ever be right now, and there’s nothing you can do about that.

So let it go.

This might be hard for you to hear, and even harder for you to put into practice perhaps, but for the best chance of being happy and successful (to a degree, at least) you’ve got to let your perfect future go.

So what do you do instead?

Well, if you want to feel like you think you’ll feel when you’re comfortably earning a full-time living from freelance writing, feel that way now. In other words, feel comfortable with everything in your life right now – not stretched and tetchy and like it’s not enough or not quite right.

Even if it all seems far from perfect in your eyes, have some faith that everything is ticking along just as it should be at this stage.

[Tweet “Enjoy this step – you have no idea what’s around the corner. #lettinggo”]

At this point, your mind will likely tell you things like: “Yes, I understand. I’ll just get to earning X amount per month from freelance writing online and I’ll definitely start thinking like that.”


“I will start feeling comfortable and satisfied with what I have… when I quit my day job. I can’t possibly be happy or feel good about myself while I’m in this horrible day job. Once I’ve saved enough or am earning enough to quit, I’ll definitely relax and start feeling happy with my situation.”

Guess what? You won’t. And the reason you won’t is because you don’t feel like that right now.

Feel good right now

What a relief it is to just let go of all those stressful feelings and feel good right in this moment. It’s like taking off a pair of shoes that were far too tight and spreading out your cramped little toes (only much, much better on every level).

The funny thing about the art of letting go is that despite it involving very little activity, as long as you’re not simply giving up – in spirit and in attitude – it usually leads to activities and results beyond your wildest imaginings.

Also, unlike other things you read online (and think you’ll put into action at a later stage) you can do this right now. Of course you may have to remind yourself of your fresh new outlook tomorrow morning when you wake up – and probably the next day too, and for many days after that. However, you can let go of all that negative yearning and wanting right now.

Just let it go.

Now breathe.

This is why it works:

Achieving anything of value takes energy, but that energy has to be positive, and what you (and I) have been doing with all that reaching and grabbing and wanting, is pumping our freelance writing careers, our projects and our lives, full of negative energy.

It’s negative because it’s based around not being satisfied with what we already have. That’s the key: get comfy with what’s happening in your freelance writing online career and your life right now.

Don’t do nothing at all. In fact, do everything you can each day – without strain or force. Just let all the crazy-person energy go. Get done the work you know you need to do and let the results take care of themselves.

In other words, let go of all the wanting and needing and the I-just-want-to-be-there feelings. You already are exactly where you need to be.

You just don’t know it.

Main image courtesy of Robby Ryke (text added). Side image courtesy of admitchell08 – both via Flickr.

13 thoughts on “Freelance Writing Online and the Art of Letting Go

  1. Hi, Kirsty, since I’m still working a full-time job as I build my freelance client base, it’s easy to become physically and mentally burdened by the constant striving. Just two nights ago, I thought, quit focusing on all your projects and just be thankful for them. You’re moving ahead, but you don’t have to constantly focus on the future. Enjoy the now.

    1. Exactly Amanda! That’s what I’m driving at – otherwise we’re simply going to miss all the good stuff.

    2. Greetings Kirsty:
      Thank you for your vaulable insight on freelance writing. It is most helpful. And I agree with your assessment on not allowing negative thoughts or whatever to hinder us from achieving our dream.

      My faith in God keeps me charged and determined to using this gift whether I’m getting paid or not. As we step out in faith and accept various opportunities to write for different companies, it opens the door to be exposed as a writer. In other words, people get the chance to read, view our writing style and discover our knowledge and wisdom on a particular subject.

      At the appointed time, we will be financially rewarded for our skills. In the meantime, I”m grateful for being able to write on different online sites. Please continue to updates us, for your knowledge is much appreciated.

  2. Kirsty,
    I’ve been reading your blog for a while and have always been impressed by your advice and inspired by the way you make this lifestyle achievable and are actually living it on your own terms.
    I felt the need to comment on this post because I really connect with what you are saying. Although sometimes I think I need to be less of a procrastinator in terms of my writing, as a life philosophy letting go is absolutely essential.

    Surrender to the present moment does not mean avoiding doing all the things you can to progress but as you rightly point out is about detaching from the result. By accepting what is right now we can have so much more peace and flow in our lives and connecting with this always makes things come back to us.

    Anyway! You put it perfectly yourself so I don’t need to add anything more – thanks for sharing!

    1. Thanks Ian – that means a lot to me. You’re quite right that there’s a fine line between procrastinating and doing nothing and simply detaching from the result. I’m so glad you decided to comment today and I hope to hear more from you in the future. 🙂

  3. Hi Kirsty,
    I agree with you, the more you can find the time to organize your life and to just relax and take things easy…. is the more you will be able to achieve your goals, it’s all about planning and strategy…

  4. Great advice Kirsty! It’s so important to be happy in the now and make time to do things we enjoy every day, while taking consistent steps towards our big dreams. Thanks for being an awesome inspiration : ).

  5. Brilliant post as always Kirsty. I believe maintaining patience and resolve on the path we are on and then letting go is what helps propel us forward to new paths. I try to remind myself of this after I send pitches to dream clients – despite my yearning for the project, after I send, the result is beyond my control, so I must let it go and move on to the next! 🙂

    1. Wise words – particularly “patience” and “resolve”…

      I have to remind myself too – it’s certainly easier said than done in some cases!

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