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Write At Your Own Pace

A clock with multiple faces

In 2021, I took a long break from social media. It was an important time in my freelance business because the break helped me overcome an internal dilemma.

I never liked the short-term nature of social media. As a lifelong writer, I grew up with a romantic idea about the permanence of the written word. I wanted to publish stories and ideas that survived longer than a few hours. I wanted to write in the long form and explore big stories that couldn’t fit in a punchy Tweet.

The problem was that I received almost all my leads from social media. By giving up Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn, I feared I would doom my business to fast failure.

But by the end of 2020, I also had a growing suspicion about social media that I felt compelled to test.

The idea was simple: The less time I spend online, the more time I can spend producing higher-quality work for clients and building out alternative marketing avenues to stay in business.

The result, I hoped, would be a bigger and better freelance business than I had before.

So, I gave up all social media for more than a year. The experiment worked.

I published more long-form articles than any year before. My earnings and email list grew substantially. And most importantly, I built a business that fits my personality and preferred work style.

The break also, perhaps ironically, freed me to return to social media.

Today, I don’t rely on social media to find new clients. This means I can simply publish at my natural cadence rather than feeling like I’m on a publishing treadmill. I use social media to keep up with events, track the performance of my clients’ posts, and share stories or articles when I feel like it.

Some people love clicking publish every day and I fully support it. (I even have clients for whom daily publishing is their preferred cadence and I help them keep up.)

But there are a lot of loud voices on the internet telling you to click publish every day. I just wanted to share my experience and give others like me the freedom to step back.

There’s more than one way to grow a professional service business. Instead of force-fitting your writing into a rigid schedule…

Write in a form that feels right. Move at your own pace. Do it for the love of the craft.


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