Bootstrapping shares a similar emotional rollercoaster to freelancing. On an up day, I might have a few dozen signups and, all-of-a-sudden, I feel unstoppable. I start thinking about hiring people and taking on less client work. I look months into the future and make projections on where Cushion will be based on that one good day.
Then, I won’t see a single new signup for an entire week and that impenetrable confidence begins to waver. I start doubting that I’ll ever be able to hire the help I so desperately need. I look to take on new clients because I’m now projecting the future based on this week alone, thinking I’ll be homeless in no time. I feel like no one cares anymore because nobody mentioned Cushion that week.
I can totally sympathise with him (as most entrepreneurs and sole business owners can). At Offscreen, there are days when I get ten orders for back issues and a couple of starter packs within hours, and then there are days when no one orders anything. It’s difficult to remind yourself that people still appreciate your product even when there is no chatter about it online or you make no sales.
In the past I’ve been completely guilty of jumping from project to project without reflecting on the amazing things we’ve achieved. That’s when we started our Glory Wall (sorry for the name, it just stuck) where every month the team pins up something they’ve achieved on a wall in our office. It can be anything from a lovely message from a community member to a press clipping or a quote. It’s a wonderful, visual motivation tool and a daily reminder of how far we’ve come.
Go forth and build your own Glory Wall. I know I will.