Why Almost Poisoning My Girlfriend — on Valentine’s Day — Was The Best Thing That Ever Happened to My Freelance Business
Find out how this embarrassing story took me from struggling to book clients to earning $116,016 in my first year freelancing full-time…
And how it can also help you make more money — more consistently — in less time, and with less stress. (Even if you’re struggling to book clients right now or trapped in the feast-or-famine cycle.)
I know, I know. I usually want to barf when I see someone bragging about making “six figures,” too.
But at the same time, there’s no way you’re going to believe what I’m about to tell you unless I back it up with evidence first. Which is why I had to mention it.
And before you say “ugh…another person claiming to make six figures without proof” — here’s a screenshot of my accounting software showing the revenue from my first 12 months of full-time freelancing.
Total Revenue: $116,016.01
But I didn’t always have a thriving freelancing business.
In fact, only a few years ago, my business was doing so bad that I almost gave my girlfriend food poisoning…
…on Valentine’s Day.
But that night was also a turning point in my freelancing career.
And it took me on a journey to find smarter, faster, and more effective ways to run my business.
That way, I could make more money — more consistently…
…in less time, and with less stress.
And now I want to show you how to do the same.
It doesn’t matter if you’re struggling to book clients right now…
It doesn’t matter if you’re trapped in the feast-or-famine cycle…
It doesn’t even matter if you’re making a steady living, but your income has hit a plateau — and no matter how many hours you put in, your revenue stays exactly the same.
With the right tools, systems, and mindset, you can grow your freelance income and make it more reliable — while reducing your hours (and your stress levels) at the same time.
So let me tell you why almost poisoning my girlfriend — on Valentine’s Day — was the best thing that ever happened to my freelance business right now…
…And then I’ll reveal how you can learn from my embarrassing mistake to create a more profitable and enjoyable freelance business for yourself.
It all started when my only client fired me out of nowhere.
It was a cold, gray afternoon in January. So Valentine’s Day was just a few weeks away.
And after losing my only client, my budget to do something special for my girlfriend took a HUGE nose dive…
Because at that point, I was worried about just meeting my basic needs.
Let alone planning an elaborate, romantic evening…
But at the same time, I knew I had to do something to show my girlfriend how much I loved her. So I started thinking about ways I could stretch my budget…
And after a week or two without any good ideas, the answer finally hit me while I was making dinner one night…
I was getting something out of the freezer. And in the back, I spotted a piece of organic, wild-caught Alaskan salmon.
It was leftover after I bought more than I needed for a recipe one time. (Back when I actually could afford it.)
“PERFECT!” I said to myself…the plans for a budget-friendly Valentine’s Day already starting to hatch in my head.
“I’ll cook us a romantic dinner,” I thought…
“But I’ll give my girlfriend the ‘good’ salmon. And I’ll get the cheapest piece I can find for myself!“
I thought I was a genius.
I could treat my girlfriend to a romantic evening. AND I could save a bunch of money by avoiding a pricey NYC restaurant bill.
But when Valentine’s Day finally rolled around, things didn’t exactly go according to plan…
And looking back, I’m just glad I didn’t have to call poison control.
Now before you think that I bought a bad piece of salmon and accidentally gave it to my girlfriend, that’s not what happened…
You see, the night started out great.
My girlfriend and I were both enjoying a glass of wine together. Meanwhile, both pieces of salmon were in the oven.
Once the salmon was ready, I popped each piece onto its own plate along with some salad — paying close attention to which plate had the “good” salmon for my girlfriend.
I handed her plate to her. And she gave me a kiss as we sat down to eat.
Smiling, my girlfriend put the fork up to her mouth…
But then, before she took a bite…her face started to twist.
And she looked at me, squinting and turning up her nose…
“Do you smell that?!” she said in disgust.
Now I’m not proud of this…but my first reaction was just to act like nothing was wrong.
So I took a bite of my salmon, and said, “I don’t know what you’re talking about. Everything tastes fine to me!”
But at that point, the smell had hit me, too. Something was definitely not right.
So before my girlfriend got food poisoning, I had to come clean and tell her about the two different pieces of salmon.
I was still confused though. Since I knew she got the “good” piece of organic salmon…
Well, what I didn’t know at the time was that even frozen salmon goes bad after only three months.
And the “good” piece of salmon I made for my girlfriend had been in my freezer for a little longer than that…
Okay, A LOT longer.
Oops! (Sorry babe…)
So that night, we wound up having to share the piece of salmon I originally made for myself. It was perfectly fine, even if it wasn’t organic or wild-caught. And my girlfriend and I still wound up having a great night together.
But inside, I was embarrassed.
I couldn’t believe that I had done something so stupid, just because I lost a freelance client…
After all, you and I both know that kind of thing happens all the time when you’re a freelancer.
Which means not only should I have expected it…
I should have had a plan for it, too.
So that night, I promised myself that I would never let my freelance business put me into such a bad financial situation again.
And over the next few years, I slowly rebuilt my freelance business — from the ground up.
But this time, I didn’t just follow the same-old freelance advice you see online…
…start an email list! hire a VA! post on social media! BLOG!
Instead, I used my love of systems and optimization to find smarter, faster, and more effective ways to run my business.
That way, I could make more money — more consistently…
…in less time, and with less stress.
Which is how — just a few years later — I was able to start freelancing full-time…
And in the next 12 months, I went on to earn $116,016.01 — while working less than 20 hours per week TOTAL.
(That’s all the time I spent running my freelance business. Not just the time I spent on client work.)
Plus I did it without hiring a team, spending money on ads, or even starting an email list…
My website barely even worked.
And in case you’re skeptical like me — here’s a screenshot from my time tracking platform to prove it.
It’s for the same dates as the $116,016 income report I shared before: September 1, 2017 to August 31, 2018. And it shows I worked 998.5 hours over those 12 months. So divided by 52 weeks per year that’s 19.2 hours per week.
Now at this point, you may be wondering “How is that possible?”
Well, it all goes back to finding better ways to run my business. (Call them “hacks” if you want — but to me they’re just smarter ways to operate as a freelancer.)
They allowed me to massively reduce the amount of time I spent looking for jobs…promoting my business…and dealing with all the other admin and operations that come with being a freelancer.
And I could use the time I saved to either work with more clients — and make more money — or take more time off to enjoy myself.
But that’s not all.
I also started to share my unconventional approach to freelancing in Facebook groups and Subreddits. And over time, more and more people started to ask me for advice.
Until one day, I realized how many freelancers I could help by sharing the tricks, systems, and operations I’ve developed…
And I decided I couldn’t keep them bottled up anymore.
So I launched this site — FreelanceLikeAPro.com.
Because freelancing doesn’t have to be stressful.
In fact, with the right systems and tools, you can build a freelance business that practically runs itself. (Without hiring a team or a VA.)
And that means you can spend less time running your business…more time doing the work that gets you paid…and increase your income without increasing your hours…
Or you can take more time off to enjoy the freedom part of being a freelancer. (And isn’t that why most of us get into this crazy business to begin with?)
Well, that’s what this site is all about.
I want to help you become an in-demand expert, working on exciting projects for dream clients who respect you. (In other words, a professional.)
To get started, see how you can get two referrals from every client you sign — like clockwork — with one simple, 30-second conversation…
Claim your free copy of 30-Second Referrals now. Inside this free PDF, I’ll show you how you can use this short conversation to get two referrals from every client you sign — like clockwork — and bring in more high-paying jobs than you can handle. I’ll even show you exactly what to say during this conversation with the word-for-word script on page 13.
But there is a small catch…
30-Second Referrals is only available to members The Freelance Like A Pro email list.
So enter your best email below to join us and claim your free copy of 30-Second Referrals now. (And you’ll get my members-only emails to help you run a more profitable and stress-free freelance business, too.)
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Thanks for the freelancing guide and the emails that you've been sending out — the 30-second referral method is so stupidly simple, that it's genius!Connor Inch, Freelance Copywriter