Are You a Freelance Translator or a Business Owner?

You have to make up your mind.

There is no more wavering.

You have to decide once and for all.

Are you going to be a freelance translator or are you going to own your business?

Wait, but Clint, aren’t those the same thing?

No, young Padawan, they are not.

The difference?

Three things.

It’s your mindset.

It’s the way you approach your work everyday.

It’s the way that you think about your long-term goals.

Freelance Translator vs. Business Owner
The Mindset Difference

How do you view what you do?

Mindset refers to understanding that you’re in control of your life’s outcome.

Nobody is responsible for your failure except you.

Nobody will put you on the path to success expect for you.

It’s time to stop blaming others for your place in life.

That’s a victim mentality that will never allow you to get ahead in life.

So many translators on translator forums are perpetuating their failures to become what they think they want by blaming everyone except themselves.

(Which is why you should stay away from translation forums.)

Here are things I hear:

“It’s not fair that people don’t hire me. I’m just as good as the next guy.”

“I went to college/got a Ph.D./have tons of experience and nobody will give me a chance.”

“Nobody will pay me what I’m worth.”

All these are thoughts of someone with a victim mentality.

Do you really think these people will ever break out of this degenerate mindset?

No. They won’t.

They will either still be on the translation forums complaining about something else, or else they’ll have left the translation industry completely, claiming “they never got their fair shake.”

Instead of having a victim mentality, you need to have the mindset that you can have success if you put the work in and actually, you know, do it.

Reality: Today is the greatest time in history to be a translator.

I’ve pointed this out before when talking about 6 signs that the translation industry is hotter than ever.

Here’s just one stat:

Screen Shot 2016-07-05 at 8.12.24 PM

Don’t fall for the doom and gloom naysayers.

Change your mindset and you’ll change your outcome.

Freelance Translator vs. Business Owner
Your Everyday Approach

How do you approach your work on a daily basis?

One of the things I constantly tell my kids is this:

Consistent, focused effort beats talent every day of the week.

You can be the greatest translator in the history of the world, but if you’re not out there everyday getting things done, you won’t go anywhere.

Instead, you’ll be complaining about the inferior translators who are beating you.

If you want to be successful, you have to work every single day.

You can’t take a day off.

You have to market. Every day.

You have to find clients. Every day.

You have to hustle. Every day.

You have to practice your craft. Every day.

There are no weekends.

There are no holidays.

Only your drive to succeed.

Freelance Translator vs. Business Owner
Your Long-Terms Goals

What are your long-term goals?

Most freelance translators I’ve talked to haven’t thought past their desire to be freelance translators.

OK, that’s fine, but anyone can call themselves a freelance translator as long as they do this one thing.

It’s time you started asking yourself some questions?

Why do you want to become a freelance translator?

Do you want to work for yourself?

Do you want financial independence?

Do you just want to work with languages?

There are a ton of other careers that can get you to these goals; then why freelance translation?

Is it because you know you can succeed?

You can feel it?

You know it will happen?

OK, then we’re getting somewhere.


Where do you see yourself in a year’s time?

What about five years?

Fifteen years?

You should be evolving and progressing?

Is your freelance translation career as well?

Remember that businesses evolve and change with the times to take advantage of the changes that occur in society.

Jobs, on the other hand, get outsourced, downsized, or become obsolete.

You’re going to have to make a choice.

Make the right one.

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