If you just realize that you overlooked a deadline, missed that big phone call with a client, that you are about to be over budget and the time is running out.

You are in a freelance mess…

But don’t panic, here are 3 tips you can do to minimize the damage.

Breathe

Panic energy is really helpful when you are trying not to be eaten by predators, but no useful if you are trying to handling freelance emergencies.

You are stuck in a rough spot, but it’s not a life or death situation.

Resist the urge to blame

If a collaborator has shirked their responsibilities (and thus has ownership of part of the mess) calmly point out the snags that both parties have encountered, and move towards a solution. It’s better to be the fixer than the finger-pointer.

Don’t overshare

Have a plan. Explain it with as much confidence you can muster. Move forward calmly. You’ll be surprised by how quickly many clients forget your missteps.

I am NOT saying you have to feel confident and calm, internally. Vent as much as you want to your friends, family, and therapist. But be wary of oversharing with clients – if you panic, they’ll panic, too. Paddle smoothly forward – they needn’t see the frantic motion propelling you underwater.

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