Three Crucial Truths Every Freelancer Should Recognize…

write

As many of you know, I’m a freelance writer. Indeed, the name, “freelance,” definitely is a loaded word since there are countless perks to what I do, but my journey has certainly had its share of pitfalls. Just like the raw, uncut nature of my pieces before submission, I am a definite work-in-progress as I learn and grow as a writer and as an individual. Whether you’re an established freelancer or are just dipping your toe into the water, here are three crucial truths to keep in mind as you create an alternative stream of income while chasing the vision.

1. You Will Fall Forward — Often Multiple Times Per Day: Indeed, as a freelancer, many of the available gigs out there are heavily evaluative. In other words, each and every day that you tackle a project, there is a strong chance that your work will be heavily criticized or rejected outright, depending on the nature of your assignment. In my 3-year career as a freelancer, I experience rejection at least once a week. Last week, I encountered three instances of having my work either rejected, excessively criticized, or sent back for additional editing. However, the week before was a virtual gold mine of successful projects. There is a certain “ebb and flow,” and it’s essential to build a tough skin, learn from your mistakes, and fight to retain your place. It’s all part of the freelance lifestyle, and there’s simply no room for fear.

2. There is No Guarantee: When I first started freelancing, I expected guaranteed hours, just as one might hold at a traditional day job. However, I have discovered this to be nearly impossible. Again, your work is often strictly usage-based, so some days, you’ll experience more work than you can possibly manage. Other weeks? The “well” is far too dry for comfort. Therefore, the goal is to create multiple opportunity streams. In all honesty, I don’t think it’s possible to have too many opportunities lined up as long as you are meeting deadlines and staying organized and ahead of your game.

3. Get Ready to Work: Most importantly, as a freelancer, you must accept the fact that you might have to learn a new skill — to do what previously might have seemed impossible– in order to be successful. When I started content writing, I truly felt that I could never produce consistently solid content so quickly. However, I kept experimenting, practicing, learning, and taking the advice from my superiors to heart. Now, thanks to God’s grace and long hours of labor, I’ve been granted professional-grade status at two companies where I submit most of my content. It’s been tough.There have been many tears, many rejections, and many exhausting nights and days, but following a passion has never been easy for anyone. I’m done with complaining. I’m over it.

A lot of people talk a lot of flack about content writing, but I’m grateful that it puts food on the table while offering me the opportunity to share my voice. My companies have truly been good to me and respect me as a writer,  and, for the most part, my clients are generous, kind, and passionate about their projects, which is why I keep pushing forward.

Simply put, the most relevant advice I can offer you is to be both consistent and extremely teachable. Be hungry to learn, and never lose heart even though you will likely experience those “dark days of the soul” that leave your cheeks burning and your heart shifted a little to the left. Keep pushing, my friends, and never forget what drives you to follow your passion to the ends of the earth.

–Katie

Photo courtesy of http://www.shrinemont.com

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What’s Our Purpose?

 

 

 

Image

It’s been one of those weeks. I don’t think I can get out of bed in the AM, but it’s gotta happen. My grandmother suffered a massive stroke, and my mother apparently had a heart attack at some point and is at the hospital on the same floor. What I’m feeling now is so intense, and all I can think about is how much I deeply love my family and how resolved I am to change for good.

I want more than anything to take care of my family — to truly be there for every precious minute that I possibly can. Life is so short. I’ve heard this all of my life, and it really makes sense now. It made sense before, but seeing two people whom I deeply love suffer and look so frail has completely broken me. It makes all of the stupid things that I fill my time worrying about seem ridiculously pointless.

We’re all going to have to look Jesus in the eye and account for our time. It’s a scary thought if that time wasn’t spend helping others as much as possible. By serving others, we serve our Father. I’m saying this because I’m really seeing the point of it all. That “cup of water” given to the thirsty, that kind word spoken to someone who is hurting. Lately, I’ve been overwhelmed by the precious friends who are praying for my family. Their words are like honey — they are worth more than the rarest of gems…

There’s so much more to life. There’s other people who are waiting on the divine hand of Providence to grant them peace and help in a time of trouble. I’m ready to put this into action. My upline coach always stresses the importance of developing SOLID relationships with people — helping them as much as possible. And her goal is really powerful. I’m starting to see life in a completely different sense…in terms of that cosmic question, “What are we here for?” Is it for wealth, fame, self-worth? All posh if you consider that we’re all going to account for our time spent on this earth.

Words. Actions. God says that we’ll recognize Christians by HOW they live, and this has really convicted me. I’m not going to worry about money or image anymore because I know that God is going to meet my needs if I keep the focus on doing His work. The image of Christ is success enough.

 Viewing the temporal, vulnerable state of our existence is a powerful thing. I humbly ask for prayer and that you let me know of any prayer requests. I can be reached here or at cafegirl777@gmail.com.

Here’s to hoping for a better week!

~K.

Best Rewards Shopping Programs…EVER!

Dear All,

I’ve really gotten jazzed about rewards shopping, and so far I’ve found an awesome one to share with you guys, and that is Extrabux.com. What’s so great about it? Well, for starters, you’ll get $5 just for signing up! Then, you can enjoy amazing discounts on products ranging from groceries to footwear. If THAT doesn’t excite you enough, then you should also be aware that you will receive 5 extra handy buckaroos for every friend that you refer to Extrabux.com. Your savings will be deposited into your PayPal account (or any payment method that you choose), OR you can even donate to charity! Yep, this program seems to be a proverbial win/win. I’m pretty excited. 😉 You can sign up at the link below!

http://www.extrabux.com/r/5332e67143

I’ll have more news and notes for you in the AM. Peace and love~!

–Katie ❤

Spring Cleaning 101: Life on a Budget

OKAY, so it’s been a little while since my last post, and let me say that I’ve missed each and every one of you dearly. My readership is highly valued. Don’t you forget it! 😉

I’ve finally completed my M.A. graduation requirements. It’s been a long road, but I’m ready to click my heels and “pow” have it over! ❤

AND things in my life have straightened themselves out. I’m 1000% jazzed about my line of work, and my job search is OVER! I’m still in the business world, but my attention has turned to shopping rewards programs and couponing. No more MLM, direct sell, or anything like that (happy sigh). I’ve joined an INCREDIBLE network for shopping rewards, and I’ve uncovered a GOLD mine of money-saving ideas here lately, namely a newfound obsession with drugstore bargains. I’m serious.

Today, I scooped up some incredible liquid makeup (RIMMEL), lipstick, nail polish, and shampoo for under $8. Yep, I’m pretty proud of that. *WOOT* I’m having the time of my life uncovering ways to stretch our funds and S-A-V-E. It’s a win/win since more $$ means fewer hours at work. If I can offer you ANY advice– be it jobs, contract work, or more insight into what I do as a marketing mommy, I’m always here to help — and I DO mean help. I don’t pitch, scam, or harass, so be prepared to be genuinely HELPED.

Now, off for some sweet slumber next to my little miracle. ❤

Learning from My Mistakes!

I’ve been a PATHETIC excuse for a business owner since losing Emerald Coach status in August, but that’s about to change. I’m going to COMPLETELY dive in and treat this as a real, true-blue business. Reading Mindy Wender’s story makes me even more inspired that I can do Beachbody FULL TIME from home, get out of debt. and help others, most importantly. 

I finally found that opportunity last June. No scam, no gimmicks, and honestly, if you roll up those sleeves and burn some elbow grease, you CAN earn a full time income. That’s my goal since I need a job that allows me the flexibility to be the best mom I can be. I LOVE teaching and writing, but doing it full time is very stressful. If you’re interested, I’d love to work with you, too, and we can make this dream a reality. We can do this together, but I need you to dive in with me

live fearlessly

get healthy

help others

and don’t hold back! 

We got this, and we’re going to rock ’14!

New Post at Pure Health Finds! Please Welcome Our New Guest Blogger, Lila Monroe!

Omigoodness. Sometimes when you ask for help, you get more support than you’d ever dream possible. Lila Monroe, my good friend, volunteered her amazing writing abilities here at Pure Health Finds, and her first post discusses an extremely practical method for approaching an emergency situation (in her case, it was a brown recluse bite). I proudly bring you her first post and ask for your support for this incredible writer and business woman. She has placed her information at the bottom of the post, so please check out her page at Sahana Wellness. I wish blessings to all of you this holiday season, and stay safe!

~Katie Mayo

Crime Scene by Lila Monroe

 

Time – 3 a.m., in the wee hours a cool, December morning

Setting – Sleepy little subdivision in Ouachita Parish, Louisiana

Victim – Middle-aged male – Sharp laceration to the nape of the neck while sleeping

Perpetrator – Arachnid, the BROWN RECLUSE aka the FIDDLEBACK Spider

 

It was already a fitful sleep, then…whoosh, and an “Aagh!!!”

“What, baby?” I mumble trying to comprehend why my husband sat straight up like a B-movie zombie then proceeded to let out a bellowing wail while thrashing his pillow around.

‘I just got bit!” he stammered, then ripped the sheets off in a flurry.  Sure enough, I shined the bright light from my cell phone on the back of his neck which revealed the tell-tale mark of a spider bite.  After searching for several minutes we could not find the culprit, or the Calamine lotion.

Despite my plea to get it checked out, he decides it just itches and therefore isn’t serious, so he went back to bed.

Sound funny, even a bit familiar?

This could actually have been a disaster, a potentially lethal disaster.  But before I share what happens next, let me tell you about the brown recluse.

This critter is 15 times more poisonous than the black widow and is recognized for its marking just below his head, which resembles a violin.

It is nocturnal, seeks out warmer abodes in winter, and while generally not aggressive unless provoked, this predator is nevertheless responsible for several attacks on humans while they are sleeping.  More than likely, he does not like to share pillow space!

The brown recluse is found all over the Southeast and in some areas along the Southwest U.S.  If you live in or visit this part of the country, it is very important to learn how to treat a brown recluse bite, and even more important on preventing one in the first place.  Here are steps to protect yourself and your family:

Protect Your Home

  1. Inspect your property for holes or cracks along your foundation, walls, windows and floorboards.  Repair brick, cement or caulk where needed.
  2. Do not spray insecticides.  The brown recluse is resistant to insecticides and exposure to those toxins may cause aggressive behavior.  Simple spider traps are inexpensive and effective.
  3. Clean out under cabinets and along corners of window sills frequently.  Spiders love to hang out along the inside overhang of kitchen and bathroom cabinets.  Wear protective gloves and run along the underside of the cabinet to collect webbing, live spiders, and eggs.  Squish them and flush them down the drain immediately.

Protect Your Family

  1. Spiders love to hide—do not leave clothing on floor.  Shake out all garments and shoes before dressing, especially in the cooler months.
  2. Never reach into a dark, seldom used space without gloves, and ensure bed-sheets do not touch the floor.
  3. Keep an insect bite first aid kit on hand (see below for recommended contents).

Treatment

  1. Try to locate and trap the spider.
  2. Take one Benadryl according to directions on container/box.
  3. Help strengthen the immune system with 1000 mg Vitamin C, along with a generous portion of aloe vera filet from the leaf or in drinkable form from the pharmacy.  Consuming aloe vera orally provides a number of health benefits and is also helpful in fighting the bacteria, as it is a natural bactericide.
  4. Clean the bite area with soap and water.  I use Dawn dish soap or a non-toxic deep-cleaning insecticide spray like Mitactin.
  5. Generously apply powdered, activated carbon (pure charcoal with no additives) to the entire site.  Place in ziplock bag and roll with rolling pin to achieve consistency of powder.  We used a magic bullet which is fast, but a bit messier.
  6. Cover with wet paper towel and dress with terry towel or torn t-shirt.
  7. Keep this dressing on for one hour, then refresh, being careful not to be too abrasive in removing the old charcoal.
  8. When finished with charcoal treatment, wash the area gently again, then pat dry and apply an antibiotic topical pain reliever like Benadryl anti-itch gel for kids.  DO NOT APPLY HYDROCORTISONE.  You may also prefer to put fresh aloe vera gel from the plant on the wound and take an oral pain reliever such as Aleve gel caps.

Finally, as soon as possible, go to your nearest 24 hour medical clinic for a tetanus shot and doctor review.  The tetanus shot is important because the brown recluse carries the tetanus bacteria making its victims susceptible to tetanus disease which includes painful lockjaw and other calamities.  You may be given an antibiotic shot to fight infection, or steroid shot if swelling does not subside.  However, there is no anti-venom for the brown recluse in the US or Canada.

Therefore, drawing out the venom naturally with the charcoal, helping strengthen the immune system naturally to fight off the venom and bacteria carried by the spider, and treating the skin to mitigate as much damage to the tissue as possible, are the best practices in treating this type of wound.

Spider Bite First Aid Kit

I have seen kits sold complete for $29.99 and up, however, all the materials needed to treat a brown recluse bite are readily available at Walmart or can be purchased individually online.  You may find other uses for these supplies, or that you have some of these materials at home already.  A little research can save a chunk of change!

  1. Gentle Skin Cleanser
  2. Activated Carbon
  3. Topical Pain Reliever
  4. Oral Pain Reliever
  5. Antihistamine
  6. Aloe Vera Gel – Taken topically and orally
  7. Dressing/Bandages

Remember, do NOT apply hydrocortisone or attempt to draw out venom in any other fashion; doing so may result in permanent damage to skin.   Skin graft, hospitalization and even death may occur from advanced stage bites that were not treated immediately and properly.

So, how did our story end?  Well, since we didn’t have anything on hand, the area did swell up something terrible.  Later in the evening he felt a tingling sensation in his hand.  That was it – I put my foot down and called the pharmacist!  After a conversation with Walgreens, the tech referred us to the 24-hour clinic.  With a still adamant husband, we did a late night Walmart run and performed the above treatment twice, leaving the last one on overnight.  We applied the Benadryl gel after the morning shower and covered the area with a bandage.  The venom is drawn out, swelling is reduced, there appears to be no infection, but we are keeping an eye on it!

Take a bite out of crime, naturally – follow me on Facebook at Sahana Wellness to learn how be prepared for spider bites and other timely health topics!

Guest Blogger Profile

Lila Monroe is an entrepreneur and runs a strategic investment and management consulting practice.  She credits her vitality, strength and stamina to healthy living and excellent nutrition.  An avid wellness advocate in her blog, Sahana Wellness, Lila reviews natural remedies, world class spa & wellness products, and provides tips & inspiration for healthy living.

Disclaimer:  This article is not considered medical advice, is solely for entertainment and educational purposes only, and does not replace the advice of a qualified, licensed, medical practitioner.  Nor is the author or blog owner responsible for any damages resulting from actions you may or may not take concerning your body or health before, during, or after reading this material.  That being said, I hope the information you read here will be of help to you and you and your family will benefit from our kitchen counter wisdom.

WE HAVE A GUEST BLOGGER! Lila Monroe, Welcome to Pure Health Finds!

Omigoodness. Sometimes, when you ask for help, you get more support than you’d ever dream possible. Lila Monroe, my good friend, volunteered her amazing writing abilities here at Pure Health Finds, and her first post discusses an extremely practical method for approaching an emergency situation (in her case, it was a brown recluse bite). I proudly bring you her first post and ask for your support for this incredible writer and business woman. She has placed her information at the bottom of the post, so please check out her incredible page at Sahana Wellness. I’m very grateful to have such professional help to get this blog going again. Blessings to all of you this holiday season, and stay safe!

~Katie Mayo

Crime Scene by Lila Monroe

 

Time – 3 a.m., in the wee hours a cool, December morning

Setting – Sleepy little subdivision in Ouachita Parish, Louisiana

Victim – Middle-aged male – Sharp laceration to the nape of the neck while sleeping

Perpetrator – Arachnid, the BROWN RECLUSE aka the FIDDLEBACK Spider

 

It was already a fitful sleep, then…whoosh, and an “Aagh!!!”

“What, baby?” I mumble trying to comprehend why my husband sat straight up like a B-movie zombie then proceeded to let out a bellowing wail while thrashing his pillow around.

‘I just got bit!” he stammered, then ripped the sheets off in a flurry.  Sure enough, I shined the bright light from my cell phone on the back of his neck which revealed the tell-tale mark of a spider bite.  After searching for several minutes we could not find the culprit, or the Calamine lotion.

Despite my plea to get it checked out, he decides it just itches and therefore isn’t serious, so he went back to bed.

Sound funny, even a bit familiar?

This could actually have been a disaster, a potentially lethal disaster.  But before I share what happens next, let me tell you about the brown recluse.

This critter is 15 times more poisonous than the black widow and is recognized for its marking just below his head, which resembles a violin.

It is nocturnal, seeks out warmer abodes in winter, and while generally not aggressive unless provoked, this predator is nevertheless responsible for several attacks on humans while they are sleeping.  More than likely, he does not like to share pillow space!

The brown recluse is found all over the Southeast and in some areas along the Southwest U.S.  If you live in or visit this part of the country, it is very important to learn how to treat a brown recluse bite, and even more important on preventing one in the first place.  Here are steps to protect yourself and your family:

Protect Your Home

  1. Inspect your property for holes or cracks along your foundation, walls, windows and floorboards.  Repair brick, cement or caulk where needed.
  2. Do not spray insecticides.  The brown recluse is resistant to insecticides and exposure to those toxins may cause aggressive behavior.  Simple spider traps are inexpensive and effective.
  3. Clean out under cabinets and along corners of window sills frequently.  Spiders love to hang out along the inside overhang of kitchen and bathroom cabinets.  Wear protective gloves and run along the underside of the cabinet to collect webbing, live spiders, and eggs.  Squish them and flush them down the drain immediately.

Protect Your Family

  1. Spiders love to hide—do not leave clothing on floor.  Shake out all garments and shoes before dressing, especially in the cooler months.
  2. Never reach into a dark, seldom used space without gloves, and ensure bed-sheets do not touch the floor.
  3. Keep an insect bite first aid kit on hand (see below for recommended contents).

Treatment

  1. Try to locate and trap the spider.
  2. Take one Benadryl according to directions on container/box.
  3. Help strengthen the immune system with 1000 mg Vitamin C, along with a generous portion of aloe vera filet from the leaf or in drinkable form from the pharmacy.  Consuming aloe vera orally provides a number of health benefits and is also helpful in fighting the bacteria, as it is a natural bactericide.
  4. Clean the bite area with soap and water.  I use Dawn dish soap or a non-toxic deep-cleaning insecticide spray like Mitactin.
  5. Generously apply powdered, activated carbon (pure charcoal with no additives) to the entire site.  Place in ziplock bag and roll with rolling pin to achieve consistency of powder.  We used a magic bullet which is fast, but a bit messier.
  6. Cover with wet paper towel and dress with terry towel or torn t-shirt.
  7. Keep this dressing on for one hour, then refresh, being careful not to be too abrasive in removing the old charcoal.
  8. When finished with charcoal treatment, wash the area gently again, then pat dry and apply an antibiotic topical pain reliever like Benadryl anti-itch gel for kids.  DO NOT APPLY HYDROCORTISONE.  You may also prefer to put fresh aloe vera gel from the plant on the wound and take an oral pain reliever such as Aleve gel caps.

Finally, as soon as possible, go to your nearest 24 hour medical clinic for a tetanus shot and doctor review.  The tetanus shot is important because the brown recluse carries the tetanus bacteria making its victims susceptible to tetanus disease which includes painful lockjaw and other calamities.  You may be given an antibiotic shot to fight infection, or steroid shot if swelling does not subside.  However, there is no anti-venom for the brown recluse in the US or Canada.

Therefore, drawing out the venom naturally with the charcoal, helping strengthen the immune system naturally to fight off the venom and bacteria carried by the spider, and treating the skin to mitigate as much damage to the tissue as possible, are the best practices in treating this type of wound.

Spider Bite First Aid Kit

I have seen kits sold complete for $29.99 and up, however, all the materials needed to treat a brown recluse bite are readily available at Walmart or can be purchased individually online.  You may find other uses for these supplies, or that you have some of these materials at home already.  A little research can save a chunk of change!

  1. Gentle Skin Cleanser
  2. Activated Carbon
  3. Topical Pain Reliever
  4. Oral Pain Reliever
  5. Antihistamine
  6. Aloe Vera Gel – Taken topically and orally
  7. Dressing/Bandages

Remember, do NOT apply hydrocortisone or attempt to draw out venom in any other fashion; doing so may result in permanent damage to skin.   Skin graft, hospitalization and even death may occur from advanced stage bites that were not treated immediately and properly.

So, how did our story end?  Well, since we didn’t have anything on hand, the area did swell up something terrible.  Later in the evening he felt a tingling sensation in his hand.  That was it – I put my foot down and called the pharmacist!  After a conversation with Walgreens, the tech referred us to the 24-hour clinic.  With a still adamant husband, we did a late night Walmart run and performed the above treatment twice, leaving the last one on overnight.  We applied the Benadryl gel after the morning shower and covered the area with a bandage.  The venom is drawn out, swelling is reduced, there appears to be no infection, but we are keeping an eye on it!

Take a bite out of crime, naturally – follow me on Facebook at Sahana Wellness to learn how be prepared for spider bites and other timely health topics!

Guest Blogger Profile

Lila Monroe is an entrepreneur and runs a strategic investment and management consulting practice.  She credits her vitality, strength and stamina to healthy living and excellent nutrition.  An avid wellness advocate in her blog, Sahana Wellness, Lila reviews natural remedies, world class spa & wellness products, and provides tips & inspiration for healthy living.

Disclaimer:  This article is not considered medical advice, is solely for entertainment and educational purposes only, and does not replace the advice of a qualified, licensed, medical practitioner.  Nor is the author or blog owner responsible for any damages resulting from actions you may or may not take concerning your body or health before, during, or after reading this material.  That being said, I hope the information you read here will be of help to you and you and your family will benefit from our kitchen counter wisdom.