This past week hasn’t been the best. In fact, the past couple of weeks have been less than stellar. There’s been a lot of internal and external conflict.
Besides a downturn in copywriting work, everyday life has been difficult. Recent events took their toll physically, mentally, emotionally, and in several other ways described by words ending in “ly.”
At times, it might have been easier to give up and “go home.”
Have you ever felt that way?
Frustrated that plans weren’t going as smoothly as hoped?
It happens and I want you to know you’re not the only one. We all have down days. Days when our goals seem to move farther away, just out of reach.
But, I also want you to know that while you’re in business for yourself, you don’t have to be in business by yourself.
If you choose, you can be a part of a copywriting community.
There’s help in the community.
There’s companionship in the community.
There’s support in the community.
Just before I wrote this article, I found out just how much support there can be.
What’s happened the past few days has astounded me.
Come… walk with me a while. Let me tell you what amazing things have transpired.
You, too, will come away with a fresh and renewed outlook…
What is a copywriting community?
We often think in terms of a community. That is, a local group of people, usually a town or neighborhood.
But, a Merriam-Webster dictionary definition puts it this way:
g: a body of persons of common and esp. professional interests scattered through a larger society
So, you could say that copywriters in general comprise a community of similar professional interests. And, since you’ve read this far, that means you belong to yet another sub-community of that: members of the B2B Writing Success site.
I also belong to a small community of copywriters that met at an AWAI Copywriting Bootcamp several years ago. We encourage each other, do peer reviews of each other’s work, and generally back each other in our efforts.
Recently, there has been some debate on the value of these peer or accountability groups. Personally, I feel they are extremely important. As individual entrepreneurs, we often work in a virtual vacuum.
Banding together in small groups — and even larger, international ones — keeps copywriters from feeling like they are alone in their efforts.
Sharing successes and setbacks, ideas and strategies, and even personal challenges provides an important feeling of camaraderie and, well, community.
So, what happened that my community of writers rallied around?
We are businesses… and people, too
Of course, Steve Maurer Freelance Writing is a business. I even have a City of Fayetteville business permit that says so.
But, Steve Maurer Freelance Writing is also a person. And, because of that, business environment changes aren’t all that affect it… or me.
As I look back, it’s hard to determine the exact sequence of events. That’s often the case because many times cause and effect are intertwined, and have a cumulative effect on each other.
At any rate, I was experiencing downturns and roadblocks in client work. At my job, a major project came up that required a lot of extra overtime. It was physically demanding and I’d come home totally exhausted.
During that time, we got the news that my mother had been diagnosed with a life-threatening disease.
Everything together had a snowball effect on my work performance, my mental attitude, and my personal welfare. Like I said, it would have been very easy to throw in the towel.
Instead, I turned to my community for support.
I made a brief mention of my family situation on Facebook. The response was incredible. In less than 24 hours, there were over 150 “Likes” showing support. There were nearly as many individual comments as well!
It continues to grow. Many were from personal friends.
But, the overwhelming majority came from my copywriting community. Some were from fellow writers I’d never imagined were even aware of my existence.
Many comments came from people round the world, many of whom I’d never met in person. Even so, they rallied around Mary, me, and our family to let us know they were thinking of us and were there to help.
In our weekly call and on our private Facebook page, my copywriter’s group expressed their support. They’ve become my closest friends. They proved it.
To say the least, I was awestruck… and humbled… by the show of support.
But, that’s what community is. That’s what community does.
Always remember that you are a part of this community now.
We are here to help… you.
So, what’s been the outcome of all this?
A renewed energy to build my business. If nothing else, it served as a wake-up call.
Time is limited. Time marches on. And, the time to get crackin’ is now!
I’ve gone back and started reviewing the basics to buttress the strategies which have brought me this far. I’ve restudied several of the programs that taught me necessary skills and tactics.
Revising and strengthening my business plan has top priority. Getting my act together to move forward faster than before.
I’ve been dawdling at times, getting distracted by some pretty, shiny objects.
So much so that some think I’ve lost or changed my goals.
Not true… but, understandable.
The weeks ahead will no doubt test my mettle. They won’t be easy, to be sure. But, with support from my community, it will be doable.
When life happens, resolve to happen harder. Make your own dreams… Reality!
I’ve mentioned that you are now part of this community. And, that we are here to help you, too.
I mean that, you know.
In the comments below, let us know of your challenges. What things are holding you back?
And, if you have some successes, share those too. Seeing the progress of others often encourages us to do more, do better… to strive harder.
Then meet me back here next week. Until then…
Here’s wishing you the very best of B2B Writing Success!