4 Easy Ways for Freelancers to Develop the Growth Mindset

A growth mindset helps freelancers succeed

“Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t—you’re right,” said Henry Ford, founder of Ford Motor Company. Ford could have been a farmer like his father. Instead, he used his growth mindset to transform cars from a novelty that few people could afford or thought were useful to something that re-shaped life in the 20th century and helped build the American economy.

A Growth Mindset Can Make You Smarter

Ford continually looked for new things to learn and do—because he had a growth mindset. People like Ford with a growth mindset know that they can develop their talents and ability through hard work, persistence (or grit), and knowledge. They know that they can get smarter. And they’re willing to put time and effort into doing this.

Other people believe that talent and ability are fixed. They also believe they shouldn’t have to work hard for success, and that doing better is beyond their control.

These people are wrong.

A Growth Mindset Leads to Freelance Success

“Everything starts with mindset. Your mindset guides your actions. And your actions dictate your results,” says Ed Gandia, in “Ten Strategies for Developing a Moneymaking Mindset.”

Successful freelancers have a growth mindset. They believe that working hard to develop their talent and abilities will lead to success. They believe that they can learn new things—including how to get the high-paying clients they deserve and build a stable, successful freelance business. And they put the time and effort into doing this.

A Fixed Mindset Leads to Frustration and Failure

“But I’m not good at marketing” is something I hear a lot from freelancers.

Marketing is a skill, just like writing, editing, design, or other types of freelance work. If you learned how to write, edit, design, etc., you can learn marketing.

But if you have a fixed mindset, you’ll think that you can’t learn how to market your business so you can get the high-paying clients you deserve. And you’ll be more likely to give up if things don’t go your way.

If you have a growth mindset, you’re much more likely to face challenges head-on and overcome them.

4 Ways to Develop a Growth Mindset

Your mindset—growth or fixed—is usually your destiny. But it doesn’t have to be. Like Ford said, “Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t—you’re right.”

Here are 4 ways to develop a growth mindset so you can build a stable successful freelance business.

1. Take small, repeated actions.

“Here’s the truth: it’s your daily actions that will change what you believe about yourself and the person you become,” says James Clear in “How Your Beliefs Can Sabotage Your Behavior.”

“It’s about setting a schedule, showing up, and sticking to it. It’s about focusing on building the right identity rather than worrying about getting the right result.”

2. Focus on small wins.

Take actions that will give you small wins. If you say you’re going to get 5 new clients in 30 days, for example, you’re setting yourself up for failure. But you can commit to spending 30 minutes a day on marketing.

When you check your daily marketing off of your to-do list, this small win motivates you to keep making progress. Setting SMART goals will move you closer to a stable, successful freelance business.

3. See challenges as opportunities.

All freelancers have challenges. Feeling sorry for yourself actually makes the situation worse!

Face your challenges. See them as opportunities to do something better or different. Think positive.

Plan and take actions that let you achieve small wins and make progress in overcoming your challenges. Making progress helps you develop a growth mindset.

4. Grow your grit.

Also called determination or mental toughness, grit is what helps you keep going until you reach your goal. Grit is more important than anything else in achieving business goals.


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Learn More About the Growth Mindset

From The Mighty Marketer

The Ultimate Guide to Goals for Freelancers

The Superhero Power You Need to Know About: Grit

4 Ways to Become a More Positive Thinker

Other Resources

James Clear, “How Your Beliefs Can Sabotage Your Behavior”

Ed Gandia, “Ten Strategies for Developing a Moneymaking Mindset”