5 valuable lessons for your self-employed career

Daaf Bleumink
2 min readJul 13, 2021

This story is originally published on daafbleumink.com

I have been a self-employed web developer since September 2019. It’s been quite a ride. Let me share some of the most valuable lessons I’ve learned along the road.

Say “no”

It’s not as easy as it sounds. Especially if you feel a connection with the person you should say no to. Sometimes it’s the best for both of you. Short term pain, long term gain.

By saying no you don’t miss out on that one opportunity. It provides the space for other opportunities to present themselves to you, that you can take on.

Surround yourself with related self-employed peeps

This lesson is probably one of the most valuable ones. Once I started to surround myself with self-employed copywriters, marketeers, designers and photo-/videographers, my projects elevated.

With a group of self-employed experts you get to take on bigger projects and produce higher quality results. Also, it’s good fun to have some colleagues!

Customer’s interests prevails

Working with other self-employed is amazing, but keep the customer’s interest in mind. This should be the end goal. Sometimes this means doing things you hate. VB If it’s beneficial for the client’s interest, you should do the work. You will reap the benefits in the long run.

Is there too big of a mismatch between your customer’s interest and yours? Thank them and say goodbye.

Follow courses

It can be tempting to take on a sh*tload of work and just keep grinding. But please, my fellow self-employed, stay knowledgable. Take courses, visit workshops and go to meet-ups once in a while.

Following courses is one of the best investments you can make, as it’s an investment in yourself.

Know when to stop

The freedom to work anytime seems tempting at first. But just because you have that freedom, doesn’t mean you should take it. Find a rhythm that works for you.

Consistent work over a longer period of time makes success inevitable.

Those were some of the lessons I’ve learned in my time as a self-employed web developer. This list is going to be never-ending, but at the moment this is what I deem the most important ones.

Send me a tweet with your biggest self-employed lesson. Let’s make a collection!