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Control Those Emotions!

Emotions… they have been a topic on Posted Note so many times that I should just change the name of this site to “Emotional Posted Note” or something else touchy-feely.

This morning I received a certified letter from a client that wanted documented proof of hours spent working for them. Granted, the invoice that I sent them was dated August 3rd and so I haven’t received payment for that work and now they want to hassle me about my hours.

My first impulse is to rain fire and brimstone down on their heads and make threats of how I am going to do everything I can to ruin their business because they are ruining mine – literally.

When you are self-employed you obviously rely on your paychecks to pay your bills, but even more than that, you need money to make money. When you work for a company you just show up and use their resources, not your own, and so you just get a paycheck and call it day. For me, I have to buy software for the computer work I do. Flash, Dreamweaver, Photoshop – these are the tools of my trade for my day job. But then there is my DJ business as well that requires me to purchase music, lights, tablecloths, speakers, microphones – the expenses just keep adding up.

So when I don’t get paid not only can I not pay my bills, but I can’t make more money – or as much money as I could have made.

Also, when you can’t pay your bills on time you get incessant phone calls by automated systems that call your phone twice a day. Citifinancial Auto likes to call you twice a day, every day, from two different numbers asking you constantly, “When are you gonna pay? WHEN? WHEN!!!” and I keep telling them, “Just as soon as my 6,000 arrives from my clients”.

This type of stress makes me very emotional and I have to do everything in my power to control it, to stuff it down and to make it go away. I have to be professional and courteous and instead of getting upset, I can be the one to make phone calls and send emails and write letters to customers who don’t pay me. If it works for Citifiinancial, then it should work for me right?

In the end, I have to wonder what other people do in these situations. If you are self-employed, what steps do you take to get your money from non-paying clients?

By Evan Stark

Eddie Renz is an avid fan of Egyptology, Wilbur Smith and bacon. Not a fan of humility but often finds himself humbled when he is around people who understand numbers like the Fibonacci sequence and Pi.

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