How to Give Back by Doing Your Taxes

This post is sponsored by 1040 taxes, but all opinions are my own.

What time of year is it? Yes, it’s getting closer to spring. But you may be forgetting that it is tax season!

Maybe that’s a season only a personal finance blogger can get excited about. The reality is most of us don’t look forward to doing taxes. It can be complicated, messy, and time-consuming. But the good news is that there are ways to make filing taxes easier and simpler, and do some good for the world while you’re at it.

If you haven’t filed your taxes yet, I highly recommend looking at filing on 1040.com.

Continue reading “How to Give Back by Doing Your Taxes”

Life and Finances Update

It has been radio silent over here for a few weeks, and I’m sorry to have missed you!

As I have mentioned, my only “resolution” this year has been to be a little nicer and less hard on myself. So I actively chose to skip blogging for a few weeks.

Life is always crazy and busy, but honestly, these last few weeks have been very challenging for me.

As you may know, I am getting married at the beginning of March, which is coming up SO SOON. Wedding planning has been very time consuming. And other than that, life has been filled with a lot of travel. And some amazing things have been in the works for my freelancing business, so that has been even more consuming.

So here is a little update on where I have been.

Continue reading “Life and Finances Update”

Want to make money in the comfort of your own home and on your own time? A blog is the honest-to-goodness best way to start making money on your own terms. Here's a step-by-step tutorial on how to start your own blog today!

How to Start a Profitable Blog

When people find out that I make money through blogging, it never fails that they ask how to start a blog themselves. So today I will explain exactly how I set up my blog with Bluehost and give you step-by-step instructions.

If you start a blog using my link, you will receive a very low price on Bluehost hosting, AND you will receive a FREE domain name. It’s super easy to do, so let’s get started.

I’ve been blogging consistently for less than a year, and in that time, my blog has earned me significant money as well as given me the opportunity to earn even more money with freelance writing on the side. Never did I expect anyone to actually read this blog, and I definitely never thought I could actually make money.

I could go on and on (and on) about how much blogging has benefited me and why you should start one. But I will try to be brief! Blogging has allowed me to earn extra income on top of my 9-5 job. I’ve used that money to pay down my student loans and save for my wedding. I’ve had the opportunity to work with incredible brands, improve my writing skills, and meet some really incredible fellow bloggers.

It’s a lot of work, but so worth it to me. I love feeling like I have control over my income, and blogging has provided me extra security if either my fiance or I lost our jobs. Plus, the extra money is always nice to have (and all the freebies I get from blogging is a major perk, tbh!)

Big bloggers earn hundreds of thousands of dollars every MONTH. Yes, you read that right…many bloggers are making over a million dollars a year from working online.

Many people tell me they have thought about starting a blog, but feel like they should educate themselves and prepare before they start a blog. My biggest piece of advice is to just start a blog right now. You can try to prepare and understand, but blogging is one of those things you really just have to dive right in to learn. You cannot start making money until you start a blog, and blogs don’t have to be perfect to make money.

Many people start a blog through free blogging services like Wix, Blogger, or the free WordPress. Starting a blog on one of these free providers is a mistake. You soon will find that having a free blog will hinder you from working with sponsors and advertisers. You have little control over the free blogs, and you DO NOT own your actual website!

I know a ton of bloggers who started out on these free services, only to realize they soon needed to self-host. They had to go through a major mess of trying to transition everything from their old blog to their new, self-hosted blog. It cost a lot of time and money for them, so I hope you do not make the same mistake!

The good news is that starting a professional blog with Bluehost is easy and VERY affordable. My fiance jokes that my blog was the cheapest hobby to start and the most (or only?) hobby that proves to be profitable!

I chose to start my blog with Bluehost because, after doing a lot of research, I found that most bloggers I knew used them and recommended them. I continue to use Bluehost and have had a great experience with them. They are easy to work with, cheap, and efficient.

And they were easy! I’m not a technical person at all. My fiance is an IT guy, but I set up my blog (and continue to run it) all by myself. Please don’t be intimidated by the term “self-hosted.” If I can do it, I promise you can.

When you register through my link, you get a reduced plan rate at just $3.95 per month (!) and a FREE domain name!

Other advantages to Bluehost is the 24/7 tech support, the ability to have a professional self-hosted blog, and a 30-day money back guarantee. So if you have even been thinking about starting a blog, I would suggest starting one today.

Click here to get the discounted price for Bluehost and your free domain name, and then continue reading the rest of the tutorial for how to set up your very own website.

Once you’ve signed up for your very own website here, follow the simple instructions below.

  1. Choose Your Hosting Plan

Once you’ve signed up for your discounted Bluehost account, you’ll be shown a few different hosting packages and options. Save your money and go with the cheapest “basic” package (shown on the far left). When you’re just starting out blogging, you won’t need anything fancy or huge. Even with thousands of visitors a month, I’m still on the starter package with Bluehost and have had no complaints, plus you can always upgrade at any point.

Bluehost

Remember that Bluehost is very affordable, but it also comes with a money-back guarantee. If you start blogging and decide it isn’t for you, you can always cancel and get a prorated refund for any months you have left on your plan.

2. Choose Your Blog and Domain Name

A domain is just the name of your blog or website, which you get for free when you sign up with Bluehost!

Think about what you want your blog name to be. You want it to be clear, easy to read and understand, and not confusing to spell or type out. You also want it to relate to whatever you’re blogging about.

I named my blog The Latte Budget because I knew the idea of “the latte factor,” or the idea that coffee or other small, convenient purchases ruin budgets, gets Googled frequently.

You can really name your blog whatever you want! I would, however, highly suggest that you make sure your blog name ends in “.com” and not “.me,” “.net,” or any other suffix. In the world today, “.com” is most popular and it causes confusion for those trying to find your website if it isn’t a .com!

Once you choose your domain name, type it in the “new domain” box in Bluehost. This will tell you if it is already taken or not.

A lot of times, your domain name, plus the .com, will already be taken. Don’t get too frustrated! Just get creative with what you want to name your blog. Your blog name is important, but whats even more important is content. No matter what you name your blog, if you have good content, it will be read!

Once you enter in your free domain name, continue to follow through to register your new website. The last screen will list a bunch of extras you can add on, as shown below. Honestly, you don’t really need at this point. I don’t pay for any extras, so I suggest saving your money!

And then, congrats, you officially have your own blog! 🙂

3. Install WordPress into Your Blog

Now you’re not quite done, but you’re getting so close! The next step is to install WordPress onto your blog. WordPress is the actual platform your blog runs on.

Once you’ve completed the prior steps, log into your new Bluehost account. You will see a blue bar at the top of the page. Press “hosting” and then look at the white bar underneath that. You will see the option of “cpanel,” so click that.

When you’re on this page, go under website (not shown in the picture, but it is another box like where it says “marketing,” or “email.” Just keep scrolling down.) Once you’re in the website box, you will see a button that says “Install WordPress.” Click that.

After clicking the “InstallWordPress” icon, follow the directions and click install. You will install WordPress to the new domain you just created. Then go through and create your login info.

Now you are completely set! You can officially enter into your website by opening a new tab. Type in your website, plus /login to the end of the domain. (for example…www.thelattebudget.com/login). Now enter in your username and password and viola! You’re all done!

Really, if you have any questions about how to start your own blog with Bluehost, please let me know! Blogging has honestly provided me with so many opportunities and I want you to see for yourself what a blog can do for you. Please email me with any questions you may have (thelattebudget[at]gmail.com). I am so happy to help!

 

The Story of How I Almost Bought $30 Mascara

So the other week, I was at a party at my friend’s house. Wine was involved (I mean, hello, this is me we are talking about).

As the night went on, all of us girls ended up in my friend’s bathroom. Side note: IDK why girls always end up in a bathroom together. So many life convos. Anyway. My friend happens to be a distributor for a certain higher end makeup brand. So we were all in there trying on her makeup.

Let’s be clear. I honestly am not much of a makeup girl. But I am too frugal to pay someone to do my makeup for my wedding, so I have been experimenting with doing my own. So I was open to my friend and her products.

I tried on some of the mascara. It was that kind with 752 steps. And I put it on and holy sh*t! My eyes were huge! Gorgeous! I needed this! Everyone agreed!!

As I’m batting my eyelashes at myself, someone asked the price of the mascara. $30. Ouch. A far cry from my usual $4 mascara I get from Target with a coupon.

Even with all the pressure, I walked away from buying this mascara. I know it doesn’t seem like much of an achievement, but can you think of times you were seriously tempted to buy something you didn’t really need?

I was proud I walked away from an impulse purchase. And here are some tips to help you walk away, too.

Don’t sip and shop

Had I had one more glass of wine, I would have bought a tube of that mascara. Had I had more, I would have bought 197 tubes of it. In short – we make some stupid choices with alcohol. It causes us to be impulsive and do things we wouldn’t normally do.

Be aware of this and don’t let it blow your finances! If you need to, ask a friend to hold you accountable. You don’t want to wake up with that sort of regret.

Thou shalt feel no guilt

We all have that friend who sells something. And we all love her and support her. But that doesn’t mean that we need to pretend we need whatever she is selling.

I love my friend, and I am thankful that she wasn’t pressuring me into buying her product. If I had $30 for mascara, I would buy it. But the truth is, I don’t have a makeup budget. And, though her product was nice, I really didn’t need it.

It’s so easy for women to feel guilty about not buying a product from a friend. But truthfully, if that friend is making you feel guilty or pressuring you into buying something, maybe she isn’t that great of a friend.

The only thing this does not apply for is Girl Scout cookies. If you know a chick selling those, you better order up and put her on speed dial.

Know your values

If makeup is your thing and you have $30 in your budget for it, go for it, girl. There is no shaming here. But like I said, makeup is NOT my thing and it isn’t a high priority for me. I would rather spend that money in other ways.

Personal finance is just that – it’s personal. So know your values and make the right, well -thought out decision for you.

You’re better than peer pressure

It isn’t easy. When all your friends are blowing a ton of money, you want to, too. You don’t want to look like the broke girl or the one who isn’t having any fun.

My girlfriends were telling me how good that mascara looked and how I NEEDED to buy it. And while I wasn’t offended by that, I just didn’t let it get to me. Because that mascara was not the right thing for me to buy.

Know how to brush it off and say no. Trust me. If you spend your life succumbing to peer pressure, you will be broke and unhappy. It’s all about making the right decisions for you.


Remember that it is called personal finance for a reason. Don’t let anyone tell you what you should and should not spend money on. Take ownership of your financial situation and commit to only making well thought out and planned purchases.

It’s 2017!

Happy New Years my friends! I hope you all enjoyed yourself this season.

One of my goals this year is to be a little easier on myself. So that meant no writing while on Christmas vacation, so no post from me today! But don’t worry, I’ll be back with some great content (and a story!) next Monday.

If you’re really missing me, check out some of these recent posts!

How to Make 2017 Your Best Year Yet

How to Start Your Own Profitable Freelance Writing Business

7 Productivity Hacks to Combat Procrastination

See you next week!

 

As I reflect on this past year, I realized something And it is...holy sh*t, I've learned a ton! Here are my 10 biggest financial lessons I learned in 2016.

10 Biggest Financial Lessons I Learned in 2016

As I reflect on this past year, I realized one thing. And it is…holy sh*t, I’ve learned a ton!

It’s refreshing to look back and see how far you’ve come and what all you have learned! So here are my 10 biggest financial lessons I learned in 2016.

1. Cost of living matters

I used to live in rural Iowa, where I could rent a 4 bedroom house for $500 a month. I moved to Charleston, South Carolina in 2014 and every single year, the cost of living increases astonishes me.

They estimate 40 people are moving to Charleston every single day, so the housing costs, in particular, is skyrocketing. Every year, our rent is being raised, so every year, we have moved to a new apartment complex.

I forever find myself wondering what our finances would look like if we could even save $500 a month on our living expenses, but for now, we both have jobs that pay us well enough that the high cost of living is nothing more than an annoyance. We couldn’t be paid as well in an area of lower cost of living, so we are trying to adjust to seeing our rent cost.

2. My current money situation is because of me

This is a hard lesson to learn. I have student loan debt because I didn’t pay for school as I went or apply to enough scholarships. I earned a degree that wouldn’t have paid well (and required a ton of hours). So there was a period of time I wasn’t able to put hardly anything towards debt. Now that I have switched careers and have also started freelance writing on the side, I earn more, but man, I have had to work my butt off to make what I do (not to complain…I love my job and writing!)

I can’t point fingers at my school for being too expensive or blame people for not educating me. Because I should have taught myself. I was just plain stupid.

You might find yourself in a similar situation. Once you claim responsibility for your current situation, you’re setting yourself on the right path to achieve financial freedom. And the good news is that even if you got yourself into a bad situation, you are the ONLY one who can get yourself out of that situation. It’s empowering. So go kick butt.

3. Weddings are NOT cheap

I try. I knew having a wedding in Charleston would be ridiculously expensive, but it was something we wanted to do anyway. I’m fighting tooth and nail to keep the cost of this wedding as low as possible, but man. It ain’t easy!

I knew going in that it would be expensive, so I would have to lower my standards. There are so many creative ways to save! I haven’t been afraid to break tradition, so I think that helps!

4. I can make more money

This year, I was able to start making money off my blog and by freelance writing. Honestly, I didn’t really think it would be possible for me. It took a lot of hard work, but I love earning more money!

Making money on the side has been extremely empowering. It’s comforting to know if I ever lost my job or had a financial emergency that I have another source of income. And I feel proud of the little business I have built!

5. Budgets will never be perfect

No matter how much you try, your budget will never be perfect. Every day, week, and month are different, and that’s why I am fairly flexible with my budgeting.

If a super strict budget works for you, go for it! It just doesn’t really work for me. In the near future, I will be writing a post all about my flexible budgeting.

6. I’m capable of a hell of a lot more than I thought

Okay, so this might not be a direct financial realization, but taking ownership of my finances this year has shown me a lot. I had debt to pay off and a wedding to save for. I had major goals, and I realized I needed to make even more money to make it possible.

So I started earning money freelance writing and putting that towards my financial goals. I also worked extremely hard at my full-time job to earn a raise. I made it my mission to provide value and then demand to be paid for my value.

It hasn’t been easy AT ALL. Planning a wedding by myself while my fiancé is in a grueling grad school program has not been easy. Plus freelance writing, blogging, working, and studying for a certification has been tough but so worth it. Yes, there have been meltdowns on my part and times I wanted to quit everything, but I am proud of what I have done to meet my long-term goals.

I don’t say this to humble brag, but I hope you can realize that you can achieve more than you ever thought. If you aren’t relentlessly pursuing your goals, then they aren’t big enough. I didn’t learn that until I realized my student loan debt would be the biggest barrier to my goals of going to further my education, so I am thankful to have learned this lesson.

7. You can’t be “average” with your money

I talk to a lot of people about money, and I have to laugh at how many times people tell me they are just “okay” at dealing with their own money. Though I admit I do tend to see things in black and white, this just doesn’t make sense to me.

If you are just “okay” or “average” with your money, that means you don’t have as much control as you should have. While everyone has room for improvement with finances, there are some very black and white things. Debt is bad. Savings is good. If you have debt but are telling me you’re working your butt off to pay it back, I would assume that you are recovering from being bad with your money.

These are more my thoughts, so feel free to agree or disagree. I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments!

8. Comparison is stupid

Everyone, especially women, are guilty of comparison on a regular basis. I am terrible at it! I find myself getting so jealous of other people. I compare myself to others, when I have no idea what their personal situation or feelings are.

Comparison is definitely something I want to work on in the new year. Because it’s a huge time waster! I’m excited to see what I can achieve when I put my blinders on and keep the focus on myself instead of comparing myself to others.

9. Emergency funds are a life-saver

I can’t emphasize emergency funds enough. You. Need. One.

My emergency fund gives me so much peace of mind and security. That $600 car repair bill earlier this year? I had cash for it. Without my emergency fund, my budget would have been blown for months!

10. Communication is ABSOLUTELY the key to healthy finances

Perhaps the most important lesson I learned this year is about communicating with my fiance about our finances. We have always been very open and honest about our own financial situations, and now that we are in the process of combining our finances, we really have to talk about it.

We don’t really have money fights because we have worked out our agreement. We each get some cash every month to spend at our own discretion. It’s been a huge learning opportunity this year, and I’m excited to see how our finances look when they are all officially combined (I know…nerdy to be excited about this!)


These are a few of my lessons learned this year! What are your biggest financial lessons learned in 2016? Comment below!

How to make 2017 your best year yet

How to Make 2017 Your Best Year Yet

Did you set a ton of resolutions at the beginning of 2016, only to find another year flew by without achieving all of your goals?

It happens to all of us. Our resolutions slip through the cracks and we give up when we lose motivation.

And you know what? It’s okay. We can be so hard on ourselves sometimes that the moment we mess up, we give up entirely.

Stand with me and promise to make 2017 your best year ever. Here is how I am planning to make the new year count.

Have financial goals

If you haven’t already made financial goals this year, now is the time to start.

There is so much you can do to improve your finances this year. You can start a budget, pay off debt, and start saving for an emergency. Decide what your goals are and go for it!

Find a way to progress at work

Ever wonder how some people work the same job for years and years and never move up?

Those people never pushed themselves at a young age. They never did more than what was asked, and they never took advantage of the opportunity in front of them.

We all know those people! I know I do not want to be one of them!

Being stagnant at work is a dangerous place to be. You lose motivation to get anything done and you lose passion for the job. And your boss probably will notice.

Find a way to keep your career moving forward, whether it means asking for more responsibility at your current job, going for a promotion, taking advantage of educational and training opportunities, or looking for a new job.

The people at work who you admire are constantly learning and keeping their skills fresh. They refuse to become stagnant and content. Keep pushing yourself. Find opportunity, even if it doesn’t look like there is any.

Start making money on the side

Making money on the side is an excellent way to help you achieve both your financial goals and your professional goals.

Think about what you would do with an extra $500 a month. You could pay off an extra $6,000 in debt in 2017 with that! You could build a $6,000 savings account, or travel the world….twice.

And making extra money every month is not difficult. You could get a second job, start a blog, build a freelance writing career from home, dog sit, nanny, or shovel snow. The possibilities are endless!

Another bonus of working on the side is that it keeps you motivated to do more. Think about what you currently spend your time outside of work doing. Are you fulfilled with that?

For me, freelance writing and blogging on the side has taught me so much about running my own business and how to build a website. These are skills that look good in my professional life, too!

Make time for your hobbies

Working a full-time job and a side hustle can be stressful. No matter where you are in life, it’s important to make time for your hobbies and spend time doing what you truly enjoy!

No matter what your hobby is, it’s important to invest time in it. If it makes you feel at peace, it is worth it. By spending time on your hobbies, you’ll be able to focus more on your professional and business life.

Workout

Working out. Ugh. It isn’t always fun but it is so worth it!

If you’re like me, you might find yourself sitting all day long. When I don’t workout, I feel so terrible and weak. My energy is at a low point and I feel terrible.

No matter how busy you are, make time for working out and eating healthy. It pays off. You’ll have more energy throughout the day as well as have a better attention span.

And those are just the immediate benefits of working out! You are setting yourself up for a long, healthy, and successful life when you workout.

Wake up earlier

You start your year with big goals. But you often find that you don’t have time to do them all. Especially those personal goals.

Waking up is exactly how to accomplish all your goals. Think about all the early risers you know. Would you consider them mostly to be very productive people?

I personally started waking up earlier last year. Some days, I get up 2 hours than earlier and some mornings, it is only 15 minutes earlier. But, no matter what, I am able to accomplish way more in the morning than I  could accomplish at night.

Get involved in the community

This year, make it a goal to find a way to get more involved with the community. You’ll be surprised how much you gain from further involvement!

Not only will you benefit those in your community, but you’ll gain professional skills and have a ton of opportunity to network.


The new year is the perfect time to implement some new, tangible goals. Push yourself and strive for balance to make 2017 the best year ever!

How to Start Your Own Profitable Freelance Writing Business

Have you ever wondered if it was possible for you to make money by freelance writing? I’m here to show you how, and why, you can start your own profitable freelance writing business.

Freelance writing is appealing for a number of reasons. It gives you an opportunity to earn money while working from home on your own time. It pays well and if you enjoy writing like me, it only makes sense to get paid to do it!

I started TLB the summer of 2015, but it wasn’t until March of 2016 that I actually committed to blogging regularly. I started the blog simply to blog. I never thought it could ever lead to me making money, especially in such a short amount of time!

Since March of 2016, I have gone from making 1 cent from this blog to making a few hundreds of dollars a month – and my business is still growing.

I couldn’t have gained freelancing clients if it weren’t for my blog, so I consider my freelancing income as part of my blog profit.

While I have zero intentions of turning my freelance writing business into a full-time job as of now, it’s extremely comforting and exciting to know that I could fairly easily turn this into something more if I wanted to. In the meantime, however, I am too excited about where my day-time career is going, so freelancing will remain a fun side hustle.

If you aren’t yet convinced, here are more reasons why you should start freelance writing:

  • Extremely low startup cost – pretty much just need a computer and internet!
  • Work in the comfort of your own home
  • You choose your projects and work
  • Strengthens your writing skills
  • Writing skills are extremely transferable to any job
  • Make money!
  • Create a business on the side for more job and income security

So did I sell ya? Here’s my guide on how to start your own successful freelance writing business.

Decide on your niche

If you’re considering freelance writing, it is assumed you have strong writing skills. While you may think you have the ability to write about any topic under the sun, I caution you against that.

Clients want to hire experts in their field. They want to hire people who are just as passionate about the topic at hand as they are. By choosing a few niches, you are automatically making yourself look more skilled.

Obviously, my niche is personal finance and career. I also have experience in travel writing and legal press releases (from my full-time job…more fun than it sounds!) While I mention my experience in travel and legal writing to those interested, I will continue to primarily advertise myself as a personal finance writer.

Create a business plan

To be honest, the opportunity to get paid to write kind of fell in my lap. I didn’t have a business plan, but since I’ve gotten more writing gigs, I’ve started working on mine. Learn from my mistake and start your business plan “write” off the bat (ok sorry for the pun. It was TOO good.)

Like I mentioned above, the best part of freelance writing is that there is extremely little overhead. You probably don’t need to rent office space, buy a brand new computer, or pay for much inventory. So don’t be intimidated by writing a business plan, even if you’ve never written one in your life. Freelance writing will start off as a one-person show. You won’t have investors or anyone to present your business plan to, so it’s okay to be extremely simple. But you should write a business plan to create a clear picture of your company to yourself and your clients.

A simple business plan for freelance writing could include:

  • What is your company and what does it aim to do?
  • What services will it provide and to whom?
  • How will you market your services?
  • How will you charge and collect money for your services?

Having a business plan will save you a ton of time and confusion. Once you understand your business, you’ll set yourself up for success when finding clients to hire you.

Start a blog or website

I can’t stress this enough. My clients have even said they wouldn’t hire anyone without a blog or website and it makes total sense.

Clients want to be able to see living examples of your work and they want to know that you are technologically savvy enough to put up with the demands of virtual writing.

Having a blog in your niche shows that you have current knowledge of your topic and that you understand how to write articles that people want to read! It helps potential clients understand your style of writing and who you are as a person.

If you aren’t sure about the whole blog thing, at least consider starting your own professional website. Make sure the design is aesthetically pleasing and that it is accessible and easy to navigate. You’ll want to include examples of your work and provide potential clients with an easy way to contact you.

Reach out to clients

With millions of websites and blogs out there, you can’t just sit back and wait for people to stumble upon your freelance writing business. You really need to work for those first few clients.

Think of who might need your services. Are they companies? Bloggers? Make a master list of potential clients and their contact info.

If you are regularly commenting on blogs you would like to write for, it’s easy to just shoot the blogger an email saying you enjoy their work and to keep you in mind if they are looking to hire writers. Having natural relationships with other writers is incredibly helpful for more reasons than finding work!

If you’re reaching out to large companies and websites, however, you likely do not have a direct contact. These are big-time businesses, so keep it professional. Simply find a contact form and send a professional email, stating that you are a follower of their work and that you would like to be considered as a contributor and why they should accept you. If you have links to any work, include a few.

If you’re not feeling super confident with reaching out to larger companies, focus first on scoring some smaller clients. They are more likely to work with you and teach you a few things and give you references to other clients.

But whoever you are emailing, make sure it is written well and always err on the side of professional. Even as a small blogger, I get emails from writers that start with “Hey,” and have a ton of spelling errors. Not a good look!

Keep in mind that you will face rejection a lot. It isn’t fun, but not everyone is always hiring freelance writers, or they may have a different budget. You have to keep trying and once you score one, the rest come easier!

Have a service mindset

Freelancing is NOT EASY. There are strict deadlines and it’s up to you to create contact. If you’re not an organized person, it can be challenging to cater to multiple projects and deadlines.

So above all, remember to only take on what you can provide exceptional service for, and make sure the client is a good fit for you. One of the best parts about being a freelancer is that you can choose who you want to work with.

It might be tempting to take on a ton of jobs and clients who either aren’t writing about a subject you are knowledgeable in or who are very demanding to work for. Don’t chase the money! Only take on what feels right and what you can do well. For example – I personally would never, ever take on a sports freelance writing project. Because I. Know. NOTHING about sports! I would waste my time trying to research the topic and be disappointing to the client. I wouldn’t be delivering exceptional service and my career would suffer.

As you gain more clients, keep in tune with their needs and wants. Some clients may want you to check in often, while others may want you to charge ahead with little direction. If you’re not sure what they prefer – ask! Ask all your questions ahead of time so they are out of the way. You will want to ensure you both are on the same page moving forward.

Understand the business side

Freelancing should be run like a business. You need to dedicate time to the financial side of your business, the marketing, and customer service.

You’ll need to develop a process. How will you organize conflicting deadlines? How will you invoice clients? How will you deliver your writing?

As far as the financial side goes, keep in mind – you likely are not paying taxes on whatever you earn, so you will be responsible for your own quarterly taxes! This means you will have to pay money in taxes every quarter, so it’s important to save your earnings. The last thing you want as a freelancer is a hefty tax bill!

DC over at Young Adult Money wrote this amazingly helpful article about freelance taxes – check it out!

To keep track of my freelance finances, I personally have my own Capital One 360 savings account, where I put all of my freelance earnings. I also put my travel fund, wedding fund, and emergency fund all within my Capital One 360 savings account, which is why I love it so much! Use my referral code and get $25 when you open an account with at least $250 in it.


My personal experience with freelance writing has been amazing. I honestly had no idea I could grow the beginnings of a business from home so quickly.

The fact that I can pick my own clients, make money from home, and create my own schedule while having almost no overhead makes freelancing a fun and profitable business. I love that I can grow it as much as I want…it’s very empowering!

7 Productivity Hacks to Combat Procrastination

Raise your hand if you’re guilty of procrastination (me!!)

But for real, sometimes we find ourselves getting so overwhelmed with all that we have to do that we don’t know where to even start. Or maybe the task at hand is SO FREAKING BORING that we can’t focus for more than .3 seconds.

So the only solution to combat procrastination is to wait until the very last second and cram to get something done, right? Wrong!

As much as we all use excuses like “I work well under pressure,” or “I do my best work at 3:00 am,” these are just lies we tell ourselves to make procrastination okay.

Procrastination sets us up for some pretty unhealthy habits. It brings unneeded stress into our lives and messes up our schedules so that what we could have done weeks ago becomes first priority last minute.

Continue reading “7 Productivity Hacks to Combat Procrastination”

The Best (and Affordable) Christmas Gifts for Your Best Friends

This post may contain affiliate links.
Last-Minute Holiday Gifts for your BFF

 

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Since the holidays are right around the corner (!!!!!), I thought I’d share a few fun products for your bff!
Even though I am doing a no-gift Christmas, for those of you who chose to buy gifts, I wanted to include some options.
Not ready for a no-gift Christmas? Here are some alternative, money-saving ideas instead! 
The watch is a little more expensive, but quality, and would be such a great gift for someone close to you or a splurge for a secret Santa!

Happy shopping!