The Next Big Thing is just around the corner
Freelance web developers face several challenges – but that’s the subject for another blog. How to make money? How to surpass stiff competition? How to motivate yourself as a remote worker? How to find mentors? Which tasks to delegate… The list is as long as everybody else’s, and frequently much more challenging than one of an employee of any institution.
The Best kept secret is a life long learning. That’s it? That’s the secret? Don’t be disappointed as you hear just what every teacher has already told you at school. If you never took it seriously or were reminded only once in a while, I have to tell you that as a freelancer I have to practise it without any excuse.
Some would take time to go back to school, as they approach second career in their life. I am already on my 3rd career and not planning to change it. Every phase took somewhere about ten years. I graduated schools and passed continuous industry exams, then completed some other professional courses. As the internet exploded, countless new resources became available.
One can argue that traditional school is only still needed for social skills, but not for knowledge. Common knowledge that kids need is vastly accessible. As you grow and approach the employment market, you will certainly need some certifications, but after that, it’s all up to you. Small groups of highly specialised people can work together on subject projects very effectively from different parts of the globe. This is an emerging trend of the smart corporations. Gather the best in the field for a short period of cooperation to achieve extraordinary results seems like a way to stay.
So how a freelancer learns? Of course you need a solid base to be able to do your job. But after that…
If you read up to this point, you are awarded the Real Secret: The Industry Best Kept Secret is Lynda. Lynda.com video courses are irreplaceable. I learned from the best and had fun doing it. When not spending time with Lynda’s knowledgeable instructors, I love to read up on SitePoint’s electronic books. They keep much higher standards than some of the copy cats in the area. When I buy SitePoint book I know that I didn’t waste my money. I constantly scan Amazon new releases. I also read a lot all over the internet sites on subject. Especially the open source platforms’ sites are The Source of a freelancer’s knowledge.
Learning the ropes is one habit, but it will not make you whole, until you also include learning the business side – and there is rarely anyone better than Harvard… Blog that is, because that’s as close as I can get to learning from Harvard. My morning routine includes 15 minutes of reading selected Harvard blog story, every day. I need constant motivation. It is more important than any tangible goods. Can’t live without it, so I am sucking it from every person I meet, every program I watch, and actively seeking books that would give me another boost.
Keeping close to teaching of Tony Robbins makes perfect sense for me, as did listening to Shirley Temple or Joseph Murphy, or Christiane Northrup, and most of all – my Mother. They give me the Spark that makes me believe that the Next Big Thing is just around the corner.
I keep learning to be ready for it. My school never stops for vacation.