I love this recent post on Neil Renicker's blog (which he calls, "the Marketing-Smart Design Blog). It's so heartfelt and inspiring that I feel compelled to spread it around, especially to any creative freelancer who feels discouraged because you're not quite where you thought you'd be by now (at this age, at this time of the year, at this point in your life).
Here's my favorite excerpt (but it pays to read the whole thing and see his awesome illustrations):
So here’s a call to thoughtful endurance. Here’s a call to entrepreneurs, artists, designers, developers, speakers, authors, inventors, and everybody else that has a big gap between the start of a great project and its successful end:
Make hard decisions - Be willing to cut out the fluff and the less important things in order to not give up on your project. Simplify! Focus!
Beware of the illusion of the Next Big Thing – That next great idea that you’re tempted to indulge in will eventually become just as dull and difficult as the one you’re wanting to give up. Obviously, sometimes we have to give up a project if we realize that it’s not what we really wanted to do. But if we’re honest with ourselves, our reasons for wanting to give up are often built on the illusion of the Next Big Thing. Kill that illusion, and invest in what you’ve started!
Stop being afraid of hard work – If you want to make something truly lasting and memorable, you’re going to have to work at it. Invest in it, change it up, and refine it – but don’t abandon it! Work has never been easy, and it never will be. That’s OK – and that’s why it’s so rewarding to finish well.
From my persistently and perpetually marketing-oriented perspective, what I love about Neil's post, Why giving up is so easy (and what to do about it), is the way he's using his illustration to strut his stuff!
And be sure to follow Neil on Twitter: @neilrenicker