In 2018, I decided that it was time to combine my passion of mental health with my hobby of writing. I began The Tiny Healer as a way to raise awareness of mental health and to share my journey of self development.
In 2019, I stumbled across a Medium article. It was a topic on self development, and I became intrigued in the platform.
That night, I read multiple articles and instantly signed up to become a member. Reading other writers’ experiences of earning money online, doing something they loved, made me crave that for myself.
Eventually, I got there. But not in the way you might think.
Self prophecy is a real thing
In all honesty, I convinced myself it was next to impossible to earn money online as a writer.
Although I read so many success stories, I didn’t believe it was possible for me. Why, you may ask?
Let’s start with my beliefs about money.
Namely, my fear toward earning and losing money. What I didn’t talk about in that post, was the ripple-effect this fear had on my confidence and self-worth.
For many years, I took jobs that paid below minimum wage. I didn’t think I was worth better pay.
Something I eventually learned: we all have super-powers in the work place.
Mine? Customer service and support.
Regulars would always say their day was better once they saw me. Of course, the other half of that compliment was that I brought them their favourite coffee and breakfast!
Only in the later part of a decade-long career in hospitality, I realised:
My skills are worth a decent pay-check.
Once I began believing this, the trajectory of my life changed.
Here are the things I did to earn my first $200 online as a writer.
Practice your craft
Over the years, I have written countless articles — mainly personal essays. I used the opportunity of self-expression to write stories that helped relieve a frustration or concern.
When I started my website and decided to take my writing seriously, it was important to me to write high quality articles. This didn’t happen overnight, but I knew from previous blogs I’d started, it was possible!
Even then, once I signed up to Medium, I did it with the intention of practicing my craft.
If you have a pen and paper, or a computer, or better yet, a computer with access to the internet, you have a way to practice your writing!
Practice your craft and do your best to publish content of high quality.
Bills still need to be paid
When I read articles of full-time writers and entrepreneurs who quit their job, I knew that it was a risk I couldn’t take.
No matter what the circumstances were, a paying job meant security for rent, food and transport.
No matter how passionate I may feel about a new project, going all-in without my basic needs being met is detrimental to my mental, emotional and physical health.
So don’t quit just yet.
Financial security is always a smart move when you’re building your own version of an empire.
Change your strategy or double-down on results
When I started posting articles, I made sure they were advertised on all my social media accounts. Within 6 months, I could see that my biggest traffic driver was Facebook. So I spent more time posting articles and posting frequently.
At this point, I was receiving messages with more interaction on my posts, but I wasn’t earning money.
For the record, I absolutely loved that people in my inner and outer community found value in my work.
Even so, I felt it was time to change things up!
Freelance work was the answer
After watching a few YouTube videos on earning money through freelancing, I decided to give it a go. What did I have to lose?
After signing up to Fiverr, I read forum posts about experiences and tips to success.
I then created my first gig with three packages using the Fiverr template.
- Basic: 250 words, delivered in 3 days.
- Standard: 600 words, delivered in 4 days.
- Premium: 1500 words, delivered in 6 days.
I received multiple messages and queries, but no jobs.
After altering my gig description and gig cover photo, I finally landed my first job. This was a difficult one and honestly speaking, I struggled to write an article that the buyer was happy with. Frankly, I felt lost as to how else I could improve.
Once the order was complete, I dusted myself off and moved on.
I didn’t let this first experience get in the way of my potential.
My persistence and willingness to keep going meant I earned multiple jobs afterwards.
The people I worked with were truly passionate about their business. They were equally passionate about helping others by offering support for mental health issues, self-care and self development.
It is an honour to be doing what I do.
I still have to pinch myself that I even have this opportunity.
Advertise your services
Recently, I switched to Wordpress Org this year and haven’t looked back.
These are the places I advertise:
- Website. I made sure that when people clicked on my website link, the first thing they saw was the service I offer.
- Facebook. Since this is still my biggest traffic driver, I have my services linked in the bio as well as in my personal information section.
- Twitter. If I am Tweeting about something business-related, I usually include my Fiverr link.
- Freelance platform. Fiverr has a search engine and I made sure when mine came up, it would display my professionalism and passion in the field. This has been where most clients find me.
Celebrate small wins
I was having a conversation with my partner about career and money. I felt down about my lack of achievement.
Knowing I still have a year and a half of my degree, made me feel sick and unworthy. I felt lost with my path and my potential.
He quickly reminded me about where I started.
- From $0 and believing it was impossible, I worked my way to earning $200 as a freelance writer in the last 6 months.
- Two years ago, I began a mental health website with no immediate help. I write my own articles based on personal experience or questions I’ve heard in the past. This platform was something I could call my own.
- And now, I was earning money from the comfort of our home.
- I occasionally make money flipping furniture and clothes. All the different forms of effort I put in place years ago are starting to pay off.
All of this is to remind you to celebrate small wins.
We are our own biggest critic.
It is so important to acknowledge success along the way.
Remember to look back at how far you’ve come!
Create multiple income streams
Over the last two years, I’ve been putting my time and money into other forms of income. My main form is flipping furniture and clothing.
When I was heavily focused, I was easily earning an extra $100AUD per week or more, depending what I sold.
I made a few errors along the way. Even so, this extra income paid for dinner outings, petrol and groceries.
I also tried earning as an Uber Eats driver. Although I enjoyed delivering people’s food, it wasn’t for me.
I know that these options aren’t for everyone, as we all have different responsibilities, abilities, access to opportunity and time constraints. But, it can become a worthwhile endeavour if it means your bills are paid.
On to the future
This year, especially since the pandemic, I have been feeling a little worse-for-wear when it comes to my creativity.
However, I still believe this is just the beginning.
Whether it is editing a draft, exercising or studying — I am working towards becoming better, each day.
And you should, too!
Money isn’t everything, but a little extra can go a long way if you are smart with what you have. If you have any other tips, share them below!
Relationships and Why We Need Them
Relationships don’t magically get better or miraculously heal our brokenness. It is always a work in progress.
5 Reasons To Take The Love Language Quiz.
Four years ago, I saw “The 5 Love Languages” by Dr. Gary Chapman on a list of recommended books to read.