You’re probably pretty psyched about these 37 tools, huh? It’s easy to get sucked into overthinking the tools and tactics of your freelance business, whether you’re just starting off or you’ve been doing it for decades.

But these things are mostly a distraction. In software development this would be called “yak shaving”.

Of course it’s important to pick tools you’re comfortable with and to improve your processes, but by and large the marginal utility of these decisions is *incredibly small*. It’s like trying to optimize your finances by skipping out on a coffee once a week instead of renegotiating a major loan. Sure its easy to implement but it won’t really move the needle.

As a freelancer you need to find clients, sell to your clients, and deliver value, rinse and repeat.

Tools make our lives easier, but these are not sufficient to having a good freelancing business.

You need a project management tool? There are dozens, probably hundreds. My partner and I have used several over the years. Now we stick with Basecamp. Too expensive for you? Try Trello. Not your bag either? Fine, *pick one* and move on.

Same with invoicing. I love Harvest. It’s a chef knife, not a Swiss Army knife. It’s really good at everything invoicing related. It doesn’t do project management, it’s not for book keeping and it definitely shouldn’t be used to pry open a stuck drawer. There are other invoicing services and the point is to pick one and move on.

These are like decisions at a great restaurant. Unless you have an allergy or a specific food you hate, you probably won’t regret a single course on the menu. You’re better off picking at random and enjoying your meal rather than boring your date by building a decision matrix and weighing the pros and cons of each item. It just doesn’t matter that much.

By all means spend time working on your positioning, networking with potential clients and other freelancers, building a library of marketing content, but don’t get sucked down the rabbit hole of spending your life pondering tactical decisions.

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